Our Take: A Review of Bon Iver’s New Single “Heavenly Father”

Liza's Take

I think it’s important to note upfront that I am, and always have been, a Bon Iver fan. I’m one of the ones that doesn’t think all of his songs sound the exact same. Although “Heavenly Father” possesses elements that characterize many of Justin Vernon’s tracks, it has its own unique qualities. The static beat carries listeners from start to finish, while drums and guitar chords are introduced in particular parts to create for variety in the instrumentals. And, as usual, Vernon’s echoing vocals acts as an instrument on its own.

The single, made for upcoming movie Wish I Was Here directed by Zach Braff, is infused with emotion, heard through the poetic lyrics crafted by Vernon. It most likely has specific meaning to the plot of the movie, which will be fully realized when it releases on July 18th, but it stands on its own, a quality that truly makes a successful made-for-movie single.

ever since i heard the howling wind
i didn’t need to go where a bible went 
but then you know your gifts seemed heaven sent
just lead me to a choler, dad, thats the thing

i don’t know how you house the sin
but you’re free now
i was never sure how much of you i could let in
am i free now
won’t you settle down baby here your love has been
heavenly father
it’s defiantly lava
why you don’t carry other names

heard about a day where it dropped the Know
to go another day as we learn to close

cause I’m a known coward in a coward wind
but you’re free now
you turn around now and you count to 10
to see you go now
well i know now honey that i can’t pretend
heavenly father
is whose brought to his autumn
and love is left in end

i just been up here for god damn years
can you see now?
filling up hulls with god damn fears
i am free now
i know about it darling i been standing here
heavenly father
is all that he offers
a safety in the end

This track is a worthy addition to Bon Iver’s impressive body of work. Hearing this track, along with the Shins single, has definitely convinced me that Wish I Was Here is a must-see, if only to hear what already seems to be a pretty phenomenal soundtrack.

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