- I Love You, Honeybear

Father John Misty - I Love You, Honeybear
CRITIC SCORE
89
Based on 30 reviews
2015 Rank: #6 / 718
USER SCORE
84
Based on
700 ratings

WHAT DO YOU THINK?
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
Exclaim!
The themes are universal, yet its subject matter and ways in which the album executed are deeply personal, making this a truly resonant record.
100
Loud and Quiet

Perhaps it’s Father John Misty as an antidote to the American dream that makes ‘I Love You, Honeybear’ such a compelling and addictive listen. That underneath this beautiful sounding record things are pointed toward a seedier truth.

100
The Guardian

For all the layers of irony on I Love You, Honeybear, the biggest irony of all might be that such an ostensibly knotty and confusing album’s real strength lies in something as prosaic and transparent as its author’s ability to write a beautiful melody.

100
NOW Magazine

He's equally talented at writing heartfelt acoustic guitar riffs or quiet piano tunes, adding the ideal dose of strings and lush backing vocals.

95
The Line of Best Fit

A messy, extravagant, astonishing, beguiling and honest experience: that’s love, and that’s also what I Love You, Honeybear is. Just magnificent.

91
Consequence of Sound

Over its 45 beautiful but tortured minutes, I Love You, Honeybear weaves a complicated narrative of love gained at the expense of the individual.

91
A.V. Club

Fortunately, the masterful I Love You, Honeybear proves that Misty the character doesn’t overpower Tillman the musician.

90
NME
It's a hugely ambitious, caustically funny album about the redemptive possibilities of love, and being heartily sick of your own bullshit.
90
Slant Magazine
Tillman's narrator is a self-destructive train wreck, but he's so masterfully sketched that he feels more than deserving of sympathy.
90
Drowned in Sound

I Love You, Honeybear pinwheels between an honest, bruised tenderness and worldweary cynicism, but never in that yawnsomely earnest way you all too often find when singer-songwriters use their material to present and fillet their own relationships.

90
Spin

I Love You, Honeybear, is littered with carefully wired bombs meant to blow up in the face of those seeking straightforward love songs.

90
No Ripcord

Tillman becomes one of the great diarists of our generation in Honeybear, possessing a keen, merciless intelligence within a sophisticated melodic sensibility.

90
AllMusic

I Love You, Honeybear, despite the occasional double entendre, is as powerful a statement about love in the vacuous, social media-obsessed early 21st century as it is a denouement of the detached hipster charlatan.

90
musicOMH

It’s the sort of album that even repeated listenings can throw up a myriad of surprises: you never really get to know who the character of Father John Misty is ... but it’s clear that Josh Tillman has slowly turned into one of the most talented songwriters of our age.

90
FasterLouder

An intimately close-to-the-bone emotional exploration that not only fulfills his potential that was glimpsed three years ago, but trumps the folk masterpieces of his old outfit through sheer conviction.

88
Pitchfork

Fans of the Beatles and Sufjan Stevens will find that songs from Honeybear sit comfortably in their Spotify "Mountain Drive" playlists; fans of stand-up comedy will find the album as thorough, sad and bitterly cathartic as any good hour-long special.

86
Sputnikmusic
Tillman takes his musical cues from his confessional forebears, ‘70s singer-songwriters like Jackson Browne and James Taylor, his soulful tenor a warm and inviting presence that makes his refreshingly modern lyrics and transparent sensibilities all the more affecting.
83
Pretty Much Amazing
The majority of the album is rooted in the same vintage Californian folk-pop tradition – think the Eagles or Electric Prunes – but its reflections on globalization are decidedly contemporary.
82
Paste

Honeybear thrives on the knife’s edge of that enigmatic split personality, as he attempts to reconcile the love-swept optimist with the world-weary wise-ass.

80
The 405

Honeybear is rich with sarcasm, flagrant in some places and barely discernable in others. It is impossible to take seriously, but too damn compelling to be dismissed.

80
DIY
For all his determination to thumb his nose at convention, ‘I Love You, Honeybear’ finds Tillman falling face first into perhaps the most expected of musical tropes: the “mature” sophomore release. Thankfully, he’s on track to age with grace.
80
The Skinny
The production is grand and glorious, aping the spaciousness of dusty road Americana without sounding overwrought… Or, if it does, you know that it’s entirely intentional.
80
Time Out London

Fans of sensitive woodburning-stove indie may be surprised to hear the one-time Fleet Foxes drummer skewering shortcomings close to home. 

80
Under The Radar

I Love You, Honeybear, finds the character going through every cycle of life, from lust to love to fear to hopelessness to depression to loneliness, only interrupted by the occasional bout of happiness.

80
Rolling Stone

Upping the spectacle from Fear Fun, his 2012 debut, I Love You, Honeybear is an autobiographical set about love, marriage and derangement that's both ironic and empathic.

80
Clash

In some ways it may have too many ideas, just falling short of Grant's 'Pale Green Ghosts' ... But '...Honeybear' is easily a masterpiece and already one of the best albums of 2015.

80
Billboard

Lyrically, Tillman has a penchant for enjambment that leaves punchlines and revelations momentarily suspended, so songs unfold with continual surprises.

80
Uncut

From such banal beginnings a new life – and a truly compelling new album – have bloomed.

80
God Is in the TV

This is a more than worthy follow up to 2012’s ‘Fear Fun’, and while I’ve been well looked after at the Tillman Motel, it took me a while to get used to the furniture.

70
PopMatters

I Love You, Honeybear is a big, ambitious statement that few artists can pull off for a sophomore follow-up to a beloved debut. But unlike Fear Fun, it does ask the listener to meet the artist at least halfway.

95
Completely honest, funny, relatable and relevant. It's heartbreaking and brilliantly poetic without trying too hard to be. Highlights include "Chateau Lobby #4 (In C For Two Virgins)" and "The Night Josh Tillman Came To Our Apt." Fantastic, an immense improvement from his last album.
BuffaloStaple
85
One of the funniest and most charming albums about love I've ever heard, these lyrics are fucking gold a lot of the time. The very grand approach to the production was also a really nice touch, very few complaints with this thing honestly, can't wait to continue listening to it. Also really stoked for his Pure Comedy album that's releasing this April now after hearing this.
tinymusiccritic
87
Now I'm by no means disparaging the quality of the music on 'I Love You, Honeybear' but this album is all about the lyrics and the persona of Father John Misty. I'd go so far as saying that this album probably cements Josh Hillman's status as indie music's premier lyricist. This album is sad, morally dubious to the point of being offputting, caustically hilarious, gloriously cynical, and yet, at its heart, a deeply moving and searingly honest examination of a loving relationship. And there are ... read more
SiberianBreaks
86
Tillman improves in every way possible from 'Fear Fun' with one of the most heartbreaking and funniest folk releases of the year. Much more grand and gorgeous this time around as well.

Favourite tracks: I Love You Honeybear, Bored in the USA, I Went to the Store One Day
raymon
90
FJM crafts an remarkable and astonishing album about love, marriage, and the pitfalls that may come with it. It is such a conflicted album when it comes to a perspective about love. FJM is utterly honest and isn't afraid to lay out his emotions and fears. A great feat, and an album that I have been desperately waiting for.
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Track List
  1. I Love You, Honeybear
  2. Chateau Lobby #4 (in C for Two Virgins)
  3. True Affection
  4. The Night Josh Tillman Came To Our Apt.
  5. When You’re Smiling and Astride Me
  6. Nothing Good Ever Happens At the Goddamn Thirsty Crow
  7. Strange Encounter
  8. The Ideal Husband
  9. Bored In The USA
  10. Holy Shit
  11. I Went To The Store One Day


Added on: November 4, 2014