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


Side A

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…


Side B

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.


"Tell Her I'm Just Dancing"
by Hiss Golden Messenger