• Record Label: Sub Pop
  • Release Date: May 1, 2012
Metascore
83

Universal acclaim - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 29
  2. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. Apr 30, 2012
    80
    Fear Fun's deft mix of folly and grandeur strikes a nice balance between the over the top hippie shenanigans of Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros and the vapid, calculated debauchery of Lana Del Ray.
  2. Jun 8, 2012
    80
    It'll be hard to find a more awe-inspiring album this year than Fear Fun. This is a record that deserves a spot in just about any contemporary music collection.
  3. May 14, 2012
    73
    Tillman varies things up on Fear Fun, reveals an adventurous palette, and makes what may be his best album to date.
  4. May 2, 2012
    80
    [Fear Fun is] packed with sardonic, self-effacing songs that recall the finest traditions of harmony-soaked West Coast folk-and-country influenced rock'n'roll. [Jun 2012, p. 68]
  5. Jun 20, 2012
    80
    Fans of Fleet Foxes will find much to enjoy on his seventh album: there's a backwoods feel to much of his material and no shortage of sublime melodies. [Jun 2012, p.101]
  6. Jul 18, 2012
    60
    He stomps or sways along in the nu Seattle folk/rockabilly grave-fun way displaying a sing-the-phonebook grace. [Jun 2012, p.93]
  7. 80
    A striking funereal stomp, considering its bleak subject matter, it really shouldn't be quite as sensationally sexy as it is.
  8. May 1, 2012
    80
    He confidently establishes himself here, and with a debut album as Father John Misty (he's also released several albums as J. Tillman) that's every bit a match for the brightest moments of Fleet Foxes' latest release.
  9. May 1, 2012
    80
    Despite the prevalence of rootsy Americana throughout the album, there are a pleasing variety of styles on display.
  10. May 1, 2012
    75
    Tillman soaks up the sounds, smells, and free-floating strangeness of his environment, and revels in its humanity.
  11. Dec 20, 2012
    80
    Fear Fun leaves his previous work in the dust.
  12. 70
    A striking, adept piece made accessible by Tillman's clear-as-a-bell voice, Fear Fun is the ideal companion for a weird headspace.
  13. May 10, 2012
    80
    Tillman's voice sounds sublime delivering lyrics about sexy graveyard encounters, ex-girlfriends and the dark side of California living.
  14. Apr 30, 2012
    70
    These are songs about trying to find onself, realizing how cliché that quest is, and then further realizing that there's no choice but to push through anyway.
  15. May 31, 2012
    70
    Overall, though, the mood on Fear Fun is consistent in its constant fluctuations; it's eerie when it needs to be and just familiar enough to lure in the listener.
  16. Apr 30, 2012
    80
    Whereas Helplessness lived up to its title through a narrator that found inspiration in leaving childish things behind, Misty treads the same notions of spirituality in a decidedly earthier manner.
  17. Nov 29, 2012
    80
    [An] inspired brew of, indeed, both fear and fun.
  18. May 3, 2012
    76
    [Josh Tillman] distinguishing himself as more than a back-row howler.
  19. May 9, 2012
    80
    Tillman had released solo records before joining Fleet Foxes in 2008, but none of them was as vivid as his latest.
  20. May 30, 2012
    80
    A captivating listen. [No.87 p.58]
  21. May 10, 2012
    89
    Black humor, demons, g-o-d, easy women: Welcome to the cult of Father John Misty.
  22. May 7, 2012
    90
    One of the most endlessly intriguing albums of the year so far.
  23. 100
    This stirring collection makes Father John Misty's debut one of the best solo efforts this year, a true freak-folk standout.
  24. May 2, 2012
    80
    A nourishing collation, Fear Fun has more rock (than the work of Fleet Foxes, or on Tillman's previous solo work), masterfully nuanced production (by Jonathan Wilson), and some exemplary compositions.
  25. Apr 30, 2012
    60
    At 12 tracks, though, Fear Fun could do with a good trim.
  26. These twelve tracks are full, they're self-aware, they're straight up funny, and it's these traits that immediately separate Father John Misty's folk-rock from what Fleet Foxes do.
  27. Fear Fun is the kind of album that can name-check Sartre, Heidegger and Neil Young in the same song.
  28. May 3, 2012
    80
    Some might listen to Fear Fun and hear a man feeling sorry for himself, but with melodies so sweet and sentiments so comically self-loathing, this album won't suffocate you with sadness.
  29. Though he dumbs up his songwriting half the time by fearing fun literally as regards forward motion, don't give up.
User Score
8.3

Universal acclaim- based on 39 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 8
  2. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. May 6, 2012
    5
    Not a bad album but not what I had expected, unfortunately in mostly an unappealing way. There's maybe three or so tracks that I enjoyed andNot a bad album but not what I had expected, unfortunately in mostly an unappealing way. There's maybe three or so tracks that I enjoyed and the "Hollywood Forever ..." track was the one stand out I'd add to my regular playlist. I kept wanting more of that but instead got plenty of pretty standard country influenced tracks.

    If your up for that then I think this'll float your boat, otherwise maybe wait to see where Misty goes next.
    Full Review »
  2. Mar 14, 2015
    2
    I purchased this based on the reviews here. At first I though that the speed on my deck was incorrectly set. Nope 33.3 is right. What is wrongI purchased this based on the reviews here. At first I though that the speed on my deck was incorrectly set. Nope 33.3 is right. What is wrong is the Gregorian like, pro-tools distorted vocal on this Album. I will confess that i never got past Side A. It was just to annoying to listen to. Must be the negative influence from my past life as a Catholic. I never really research the music I purchase because that would be a bit of a spoiler for me, after all, some of listening to a new album is hearing it for the first time. I have changed my thinking thanks to Father John Misty. Really? I give it a two, the music is pleasant for the most part but the vocals completely ruin it for me. Full Review »
  3. Jul 2, 2013
    7
    A lot of the songs sound like "something" you've heard before, but every track is solid. I wish he stayed in Fleet Foxes because he and RobinA lot of the songs sound like "something" you've heard before, but every track is solid. I wish he stayed in Fleet Foxes because he and Robin had great chemistry Full Review »