Outside of having released one of the best albums last year, Father John Misty (Josh Tillman) has proven himself an expert at performing bare and direct renditions of iconic songs. For CBC Music, he covered Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” off their same-titled 2010 album — which CBC naturally suggested was chosen due to his fandom of Canadian music.
With his smooth, affectless voice and oft-upbeat melodies, Tillman has made a sonically attractive platform for his often dark and sardonic lyrics — founding his songs on some of the joyous moments of his personal, married and domestic life, and then using the songs’ own fleeting beauty to address death. It’s not too much of a stretch for him to cover a song called “The Suburbs,” whose innocuous title merely gilds a track whose final lines are “In my dreams we’re still screaming’/We’re still screaming’.”
Watch the cover: