Does die Hoffnung Get Played at Emo Nights

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The way to color off the page
is to swipe away with
a little thwip thwip, you can
make the noise, go ahead.

die Hoffnung is The Hope
and their songs wear
frayed laces and cracked
belts, they jump into

glacial water, they’ll get
to it when it’s time exactly.
On Love Songs it was
just Jon and Jim and

played with mortar between
big swells and treadmills.
Before then they were i hate
myself and later it was

die Hoffnung which means
The Hope, a marathon from self-
loathing to a glimmer, long-
distance runners that pulled the ribbon;

I mean these musicians
are comfortable locking eyes
with gawking voids. Love
doesn’t sound like

love songs but love songs
are like eels or big fish
you know they’re slippery
to catch by hand.

That album is bigger than the
internet would tell you on first
blush, there’s a lot of emotion
going on in there you

know a lot like love, it
splits, it churns, it really
scrambles you up inside
a lot of the time.

They asked Travis to help
with more guitar but it’s
a seamless spackle if you
knew from before you

probably couldn’t tell or
at least you’d have to touch
your tongue and really
taste the air a second.

With Travis, die Hoffnung
put together Elegies and
Creation Songs and before
it came out Travis died

from addiction and depression.
The LP carries a letter about
him and a CD-R of separate songs
for those in his absence

and a burned disc automatically
feels so intimate. Does die
Hoffnung get played at
emo nights, the emo night

with sweet mocktails and
multiple die Hoffnung tracks
on the short list is the night
for me, where is that night. Elegies

starts slow like it knows but
of course it doesn’t, it’s a record
and Travis is on it, and I didn’t
know Travis but it’s clear

his spirit is a weight, like
Gilbert’s heavy box which
I think about in daylight
and shade, and in a way brothers

Jim and Jon have been
whispering and shouting
about for a long time. Creation
songs are early verses and

elegies are the late ones but
of course we can shuffle them
together because snakes and math
show are examples of endlessness.

Some people write songs
they think people want
to hear, die Hoffnung writes
the songs they have to write

and sometimes even that isn’t
enough to fend off tides and debt
collectors and brain chemistry,
all that splayed energy, you know,

that doesn’t mean there isn’t
hope in the bent notes and the
melodic snare and the spoken
parts and the clipped shouts;

this album is stacked with hope
it’s lousy with it like little divots
that might trip you up if you aren’t
listening close and even if you are.




Levi Rubeck is a critic and poet currently living in the Boston area. More shenanigans can be found at

Casting Deep Meteo, Music