This ethereal song is from Greta Van Fleet's second album, The Battle at Garden's Gate. The record finds the band exploring the human experience, with this track being about a human utopia.
The first verse finds Josh Kizska reflecting on how love is always the answer in tough times.
Sorrows of the Earth
May our tears of rain wash down to bathe you
During the second and third verse, Kiszka sings of an army "'marching across the land" spreading a message of peace.
We do not fight for war
But to save the lives of those who do so
The reference to an army spreading a message of peace ties in with the title of Greta Van Fleet's debut album, Anthem of the Peaceful Army. Asked by Kerrang who the peaceful army is, Josh Kizska replied:
"The phrase originated from a poem I wrote at 5 a.m. one morning. I carried it around with me for a year and when we started writing the album it started to make more sense.
It's open to interpretation what the Peaceful Army itself is, but I think it's a banding together of people who believe in a world of freedom and truth and kindness. There's so much hate and oppression and violence and bulls--t, which has been going on for thousands of years and has never worked."
In the chorus Kiszka sings:
Can you feel my love?
Rising with the heat above
Life's the story of
Ascending to the stars as one
This is a reference to the humans entering a utopian existence after choosing to love each other. "There's plenty of love left in this world, even though it may not seem like it," said bassist/keyboardist Sam Kiszka. "And that's what 'Heat Above' is about, rising to the stars together."
So how does "Heat Above" fit into The Battle at Garden's Gate? Josh Kiszka said each track has the theme of "different cultures and civilizations inside of this world searching for some kind of salvation or enlightenment." Though the record starts with this song, its narrative concludes with its story of humans finding paradise.
Reviewers likened Greta Van Fleet's debut album, Anthem Of The Peaceful Army, to the heavy rock sound of Led Zeppelin. This song, which opens their second record, introduces some different elements, including a Hammond B3 organ and string instruments.
The band recorded a live performance video where they play the song on an ornate soundstage in Nashville.
Josh Kiszka first wrote the lyrics for this song in 2015 before dusting them off five years later. It ultimately became the bridge between Anthem of the Peaceful Army
and Gardens Gate
. "It's all sort of a shared world," said Kizska to American Songwriter
. "There's this tapestry that's going on, and it's all strands of material that make up this really colorful thing."