Reflective melancholy drives a search for truth, peace and love.
“I believe the world will be saved by beauty”; so says Prince Lev Nikolyaevich Myshkin, the protagonist of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novel, ‘The Idiot’. As a proponent of this maxim, Heath has produced an album that speaks to what inspires the best in us, our aspirations for what is truly good and what connects us to each other.
Self-produced in the rural idyll of western Pennsylvania and mastered by Grammy-winning engineer Pete Lyman, (Chris Stapleton, John Prine, Jason Isbell ), many of these songs were written during challenging experiences for, Heath such as a long struggle with anxiety and the death of a close friend.
There is an immediacy to these songs, which are unadorned with studio trickery; they choose to speak directly from the heart. The opening track, ‘You’ll find me‘ sets the tone for the rest of the album with its air of languid melancholy and partnering harmonica; you can almost hear the logs crackling on the fire as the track exudes a gentle rustic atmosphere. The lyrics are clearly showing Dostoevsky’s influence with the lines, “You’ll find me/ in the hills and forests/Oh you’ll find me in the fields/You’ll find me, in a child’s laughter/Oh you’ll find me, in all that’s real”. The title track, ‘Kingdom Come’ could have been a 1960’s protest song with its search for truth, hope and peace. ‘Rise to Arms’ urges humanity to awaken to life’s possibilities and refrain from living according to others’ expectations. Celebrating the love of friends, life and peace is the theme of, ‘The Feast’ whilst, ‘Wait for Mercy’ sings of a hidden light for humanity wherever that may lie.
A meditative collection of songs then, that are predominantly slow in tempo and simple on instrumentation. Shades of Springsteen surface at times, but Heath’s approach seems kinder, simpler, certainly less exuberant. Given the time and space, the songs may grow with you and offer a release from a restless world.