A few months ago, M.C. Taylor revealed that a new Hiss Golden Messenger album was due out in October and played a new track, “Happy Day,” from it. Now, the official details behind the release have been announced: It’s called Heart Like A Levee and is out on 10/7. It also comes packaged with a second album, titled Vestapol, that contains eight previously unreleased songs that were recorded by Taylor “in various motels on the road and at his home in Durham, NC.” Listen to the album’s lead single, “Biloxi,” and read a statement from Taylor about the album’s creation below.
The writing of the songs that became Heart Like a Levee started in a hotel room in Washington, DC, in January of 2015 during a powerful storm that darkened the East Coast. At that time I was feeling—more acutely than I had ever felt before—wrenched apart by my responsibilities to my family and to my music. Forgetting, momentarily, that for me, each exists only with the other. How could I forget? Though maybe my lapse was reasonable: I had just quit my job, the most recent and last, in a series of dead-end gigs stretching back 20 years, with the vow that my children would understand their father as a man in love with his world and the inventor of his own days. They would be rare in that regard. And then—driven by monthly bills and pure fear—I left for another tour, carrying a load of guilt that I could just barely lift. But in that snowy hotel room I found the refrain that became my compass: I was a dreamer, babe, when I set out on the road; but did I say I could find my way home?
Heart Like A Levee is out 10/7 via Merge Records. Pre-order it here.