Hiss Golden Messenger's
Heart Like a Levee
by Christopher Wolford
Artist: Hiss Golden Messenger
Release date: October 7, 2016
Label: Merge Records
I can honestly say Heart Like a Levee isn’t just the album of the year,
it's the one we need to get through it.
A track-by-track annotated guide
1. Biloxi - The scene is set: the new south where the old still haunts, life pushes & pulls like a river - sink, fight, or float along.
2. Tell Her I’m Just Dancing - Fire, a river’s foil, carries smoke to heaven, where we cannot go, blinds, leads us away from the sacred stream.
3. Heart Like a Levee - Building & building, the heart holds all it can until it breaks. It pours & pours, washing us away to new places.
4. Like a Mirror Loves a Hammer - The empty heart can only float. There’s a need to destroy everything, leave it all behind.
5. Smoky’s Song - A chance to come up for air. Reflect at daybreak. Breathe deep if it’s your last. A sonic redemption, baptism by sound.
6. Cracked Windshield - The stream meets the empty sky. All men, in heaven, on earth, go tumbling down. But nothing grows in one place.
flip the record…
7. As the Crow Flies - Swim to the surface. Death flies higher than smoke, comes down when it wants. Don’t forget this. Death never will…
8. Happy Day (Sister My Sister) - And the living are everywhere, drowning without hands to haul them to the surface. You have two strong ones.
9. Say It Like You Mean It - A hurried sermon. But nobody’ll believe a word if you look back without the will to keep up with the current.
10. Ace of Cups Hung Low Band - A minor arcana, five streams converge. Love doesn’t sleep on the riverbed, but it’s within reach. Pluck it.
11. Highland Grace - Every river spits you out into the sea. Swim to shore, look out at a new world, wider, deeper than any before it.