There are albums that own you from the opening line through the last breath. H.C. McEntire’s solo record Lionheart begins with the hymn “A Lamb, A Dove”. Heather’s voice and piano chords, “You’re in my blood, You’re in my head, You’re in my eyes, You’re in my bed…”
Welcome to the service, sisters and brothers. The record ends with heart stopping desire “Dress in the Dark”: “You rolled into town all wrong, When everything was calm, Oh baby, are you kidding me?”
Heather McEntire is the front woman for the North Carolina indie band Mount Moriah. I’ve been an unabashed fan of theirs for years. When they decided to take a break so one of the members could start a family McEntire went on tour with Angel Olson as a back up singer. But look, nobody puts Heather in the corner.
There’s a readily available story about how she wanted to do a punk collaboration with Kathleen Hanna who steered her back to the baptismal depths of the past, the religious southern roots, the classic country music from her childhood “in the land she cut her teeth on” — all in conflict with her coming out. The result is Lionheart.
To choose just one song from this 2018 release is sacrilege. This Heather McEntire and Jared Hogan produced video of the song “Baby’s Got the Blues” is a stunner. She’s a poet and a storyteller; she’s a musician and songbird. She’s the real deal. This is H.C. McEntire.
(Song recommendation by Erin L. Cork)