music merch

Taking Sides (album)

by Court Hoang

  • Streaming + Download

    Includes high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. Paying supporters also get unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app.

    Includes artwork by RJ Hinojosa and Whitney Hoang, as well as a bonus track.

      name your price




My first full-length album recorded! 13 tracks written and recorded in Hanoi, VN; 2010-11.


released November 17, 2011



all rights reserved


Court Hoang Fort Worth, Texas

Court Hoang is a singer/songwriter, composer and actor based in Fort Worth, TX. Originally from Dallas, he's worked in California, Vietnam, and most recently Austin before moving back to north Texas. He has composed music for several stage plays in Los Angeles as well as in Austin, where he released his most recent album, Compass Rose (2013). ... more

contact / help

Contact Court Hoang

Streaming and
Download help

Redeem code

Track Name: Please, Don't Mistake My Weakness for Grace
the folding chairs are where i set my sights
the separation folds into night
but i can't sit you down until dark
no i can't sit you down until dark

from the top come dozens of grays
from the bottom come the light rays
but i can never open your eyes
no i could never open your eyes again

so, please, don't mistake my weakness for grace

tell me something beautiful now
just close your lips and tell me right now
because i can never read you right now
no, i can never read you right now

just, please, don't mistake my weakness for grace

don't you know you can turn me over
don't you know that you can just turn me over
Track Name: Undefined
don't be afraid of me, darling
i won't cry, i won't cry if you just
tell me your name and your heartbeat
stays with mine, keeping time inside you

don't get in the habit of be-
lieving you were born to be
something different
from me, from me

what would you say to me, darling
you would lie, you would lie to keep me
free in a sense that i don't think
i can define, yours and mine would never

correspond in this time or be-
gin to follow paths that intertwine
there's yours and then there's mine
there's try and then there's try
fucking open up your eyes
there's something wrong with you
there's something wrong with you
tell me what is wrong with you
something's wrong
you won't tell me what's wrong
Track Name: Only Ghosts
i was on a freight train running over hillsides,
wond'ring where you were
staring at a letter torn out of your notebook
scrawled in broken verse

tried to say goodbye, you know i'm just a maybe
not a certainty
but if you stuck around, i'd show you i'm not so bad,
maybe you'd agree

and if you still believe it's only ghosts who bleed unseen
i don't want to hear your anecdotes when i am grieving

i can hear your breath in whispers now there's no one
keeping it from me
if you want to go, just say so, we'll go far away
from this old world

i don't want to take your antidotes for my diseases
if you still believe we're only ghosts then stop your bleeding

now the wind is crying only for the ground ten
thousand feet below
i can feel your heartbeat pulling me up, but i think
you just can't say no
Track Name: Makes Me So
after so long i can't believe you don't believe me.
i can tell, you're long gone, you don't want to see me,
don't have a reason to go on
so now we're done

if you're going, i'll move on but i don't think you're really
gonna stay gone. you promised to leave me,
don't have a reason to hang on
you swore me off

but we both know that you don't keep
your promises
and don't pretend you know why you break them
you don't know
it makes me so

our days of infancy are wearing thin
we linger on until we break the skin
fortunes pass us by as we build walls
for mansions standing tall built for
separating lives
and taking sides

if you don't mind, i'll come with you, at least until you feel you're
satisfied. but i can't help the voices inside me
that say you're wrong

i don't know what i feel anymore,
i don't know why
you won't abide the stumbles and falls of everyone
who sees you choke
it makes me so
i don't know what to think anymore
it makes me so
i can't forgive the things i'll never even know
it makes me so
Track Name: Starting Over
never had a chance to get you down
something tells me you wouldn't give in
so easily

always had a leg up on your shoulder
something told me somehow we'd get by
oh, somehow

i had time and you said you wouldn't mind
starting over
but now it's late and i don't have to feel
anything when i'm sleeping

revelations separate the fights
never had a chance to get me right
in the face

all this talking, all this sympathy
something told me someday we could get
so much higher than this

i had time and you said you wouldn't mind
starting over
but now it's late and i don't know where we're
starting from, someplace new

no i don't feel better
no i can't see
we could be so much
better, you'll see
oh, you'll see

tear me open, tear my heart in two
don't just stand there
tear me open, tear my heart into
something new, something new

no i don't feel better
no i can't see
we will be so much
better, you'll see
oh, you'll see
yes, you will see
Track Name: Open/Shut
laid out on my floor, pictures try to sell me things
i was walking out my door and stopped to breathe
picture's fading, feeling free

(h)ours are all the same, yours and mine are both the same
i was listening until the picture faded
and the clock covered its face

in seasons of the deepest of the seas
i was waiting for your teeth to open/shut and tear through me

won't you come and sit with me sometime
there is a reason to go outside the lines of the pane

it struck me as unwise to derail the dialogue
looking closely helped me see through all this fog
see you clearly as i was

pouring down the drain thoughts of intrigue and of blame
but something's catching me up in the same old ways
picture's fading out of a

clear night in the moonlight and the skies
are singing songs of love and grace,
singing songs of hating the

daybreak making clear all of our mistakes
don't know what you're asking for, but i can't help you anymore
i can't help you anymore, i can't help you anymore
Track Name: The Basement
thoughts of intervention
left me floating in oceans foreign to me now
this could go all night
you know
i could go all night

tales of indiscretion
leave me with notions
and i can't see you from the shore
"don't you follow me."
you don't
have to follow me

it's only in your head
the oceans burning red
i followed you downstairs
i thought you'd open up there

but i was
wrong to call on you
to draw on time spent fighting me
spent watching you
i won't follow you
but don't you know
half of me was you

it's only sometimes now
the ocean's empty now
i followed you downstairs
i thought you'd open up

there you go again
and i don't know what to do with you
what to do
it's nothing real now
it's nothing new
i could
stand in oceans deep
and drown with you
Track Name: Don't Hesitate
hark! the herald angel said to me
where the fuck d'you think you're going now
the party's over this way
oh, but i forgot to bring your shirt
you must think i never had a chance
to wash the stains away

when the smoke is the glass
and you can't relax at all
i can't even hear you cry anymore

so, where did you go again last night
did you think i'd never notice if you
didn't come back home to me?
i don't know how you think we could live
in the same confinement if you don't
pretend to give a shit

when you know it's a lie
but you won't supply the answer
i can hardly even try anymore

don't be afraid of my love
don't hesitate to surrender

when the hints turn to shouts
and no one's about to answer
i don't even question why

watch the gates and close them if you see
anything that constitutes a moving violation
in this town
oh, but i remember you can't dance
how about i take your legs and bind them tight
so you can't walk?

when there's nothing to gain
from sparing with painted faces
you don't even have to try
i don't mind anymore

tell me, do you think i went too far?
did i take you for a ride and leave you
hanging out to dry this time?
oh, but i don't think you understand
when i held you down i swear that you were
always on my mind
Track Name: How to Cope
i was never open to the way that you
played the game exactly how you wanted to
but rules were made for breaking spirits
how to cope is something i can help you learn
broken pieces fit together in their turn

but you don't have the patience to stay on the wagon's charge
i don't know
why you have to go so early in the morning
in the afternoons i get so fucking bored in
this room
bring me with you and i'll show you where to go
but if you want to leave me here then go, go, go

i don't need you half as much as i need something stronger
from johnnie walker

don't you want me now
don't you care
don't you dare

vision's blurring as the night is wearing on
wonder if i'll see the sun before it's gone
simple things are never simple if you don't
take the time to recognize you'll never know

and justifying never seems to change the fact that
broken bottles look so much like diamonds sparkling
after fighting i can't even get my brain to start to
tell them apart
Track Name: Basic Properties of Sight
deal in dreams and stake me on them
crawling back into the ring somehow
my head is bleeding from the shock
the curtains falling to the blue
are cov'ring up the spots where i was
falling to the ground, too slow to stop
my head is reeling from the sight
can't hear the screams over the fight

one survivor tells the tale of
millions dead and millions more to come
the sequel's better than the first
the focus clearer now

you don't have to go,
you don't have to go,
just say so

i can go alone,
i can go alone,
i can go alone,
just say so

the basic properties of sight:
you look at me and close your eyes

you can tell me no,
you can tell me no,
just say so

you don't want to go,
you don't want to go,
you don't want to go,
just say so

you don't want to go
so change out of your cheap disguise
don't keep the mourning out of sight

soldiers climbing up the hill don't
raise their flags until they spill the
blood of men and children's bones are
laid out on the ground and screaming

don't get up
don't get up
don't get up
but you won't give up
Track Name: Not Really an Apology
won't you take me home
there's nowhere left to go
there's nowhere else i want to go
and will you wait outside
as the door is closing
when the moon is falling from the sky

because i won't let you in
i tried to make pretend
that we were partners in this war
but now my flag's been flown
i'm never fighting for peace
i'm never fighting for the chance to begin

and i know that's not okay
yeah, i know it's not okay
i don't know what to say

leave your coat with me
when you need to breathe
and i can still believe in you
but when the clocks are gone
will you stay in my thoughts
will you stay in my heart until the end

because in the streets i walk
i can't hear you call
when my wheels are turned around
so help me try to see
when there's no one in reach
when there's nothing in my head but me

because you know i'm not all right
yeah, you know i'm not all right
so why'd'you look so surprised?

in the falling snow
my thoughts are falling low
so won't you please just take me home
i'll never try to be
the kind of person you'd meet
the kind of person that you'd see
on the street
i promise i'll be discreet
Track Name: Wind-Up Girl
i was a no-brainer trapped inside a
well-don't-you-know, trying to go in too deep
never-you-mind passed me by and told me
i shouldn't care

honesty posed on the ground for me to
capture the sound, turn it around, and send it upward
all that i know now is i can't feel my feet: someone
picked me up and dragged me through the air until i cried

trying to buy patience from a broken
vending machine; oh-what-a-dream just laughed in silence
holding a transparent mirror to my face
seeing you

oh-what-a-chore asked me why i never
tried to pretend, knowing the end, well, why'd i bother
i said what i said to the face of someone strange
lied and cheated and the feeling didn't change until you cried
best wishes and a chance at fortune fading from inside
Track Name: Imprint
all of the elders fell from the burning tops of the trees
foxes in fables searching for silence in their screams
notions of people forgotten and lysis of disease
famous for fables and yarns spun around the open seams

but i should've known you, i could've brought you something
something to burn or something to leave at your feet
as a record of the changing mean
i feel its range in me
and i left an imprint on your cheek

rondels and songs have always been on the edge of weeds
planted and sown for someone to grow around their seeds
standing on tables and flailing their arms in ecstasy
moments of glorious madness and authenticity

but i should've known you, i could've helped you to keep
something to burn away all the older memories
you never had a chance to see
you wouldn't stand with me
when i demanded peace
you never granted it to me

but i never asked for you to leave
and i laid the answer on your sleeve
i left an imprint on your cheek
i left an imprint