Father John Misty released “Ballad of the Dying Man,” a new song from his forthcoming album Pure Comedy, on Wednesday. It is simultaneously plaintive and winking and obnoxious and beautiful, as all the good Father John Misty songs are.
In a fortuitously timed coincidence, after dinner Tuesday night I ran into a raggedy fortune-teller who demanded I solve a tricky riddle. “Is poptimism destroying rock music?” he asked.
Four hours later, I had solved it. In return, Brian (the fortune-teller) showed me a tantalizing glimpse of the future: The Ringer now possesses knowledge of all of the records FJM, a.k.a. J. Tillman, will ever release. For legal and metaphysical reasons, we cannot share the full albums with you, but here are some short descriptions and track lists:
‘Crystal Feud’ (2019)
A theme album about Father John Misty’s long-standing tiff with smoothie entrepreneur Amanda Chantal Bacon, regarding a stolen quartz crystal.
When We’re Quarreling Amid the Dusts (3:24)
I Wrote a Sestina (4:55)
Peter Singer Blues (3:25)
My Deliberate Falcon (2:31)
Quartz Hurts (2:49)
A Rose, a Rose, a Rose for You (3:09)
My Soul Goes Round ’n’ Round (2:50)
A Good Man Is Hard to Find (2:39)
How Can You Say You Love Me When You Never Give Me Butter (6:44)
Another Kaleidoscope, for Amanda (3:28)
Animal Liberation (12:11)
‘De Banalis’ (2025)
After Misty moved to Tulum with Bacon following the Great Crisis, it took a while to find a label to release this one. Tillman couldn’t release it himself digitally, because of what happened to the internet during the unrest.
Raoul Gave Me His Avacado (4:24)
Where Have You Gone? (2:48)
Elegy for the Rest of the Fleet Foxes (5:12)
Atlantic Solitude Bastard (4:00)
O, I Long for Peace From My Beard to My Toes (3:22)
Remembering My Televisions (2:43)
Eagle Rock’s Last Smoothie Shop (3:45)
Ruined Agave (2:12)
Satire Attire for a Mass Funeral (3:41)
Bored in Mexico (5:44)
‘Another One to Fear Fun’ (2029)
Misty teamed up with DJ Khaled for a benefit mash-up mini-album to raise awareness of potassium deficiency. It is released to zero acclaim.
All I Do Is Win at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery (4:14)
No New Friends in Babylon (3:22)
Nancy, From Now on We Takin’ Over (3:32)
Only Son of Gold Slugs (3:35)
I Got the Keys to the Chateau Lobby #4 (2:58)
The Night Josh Tillman Came out Here Grindin’ (4:13)
Following the failure of the Khaled-Misty collab, Tillman disappears for 44 years. He largely fades from the pan-national consciousness, partly due to continued geopolitical unrest and partly because everyone gets back into disco for a couple of decades.
Finally, a young filmmaker tracks down FJM on a Foucault-themed commune in Wuhan, China.
Misty reemerges in a critically heralded Snapchat documentary, Searching for Josh Tillman.