Release date: 19 September 2014
Label: Rubyworks Records
If the name Hozier just brings the Take Me To Church to you mind, then maybe you haven’t quite heard his whole album. If you are one of those people then I suggest you come back to this blog after you are done listening to his album. The reason why I decided to write a post on this commercially successful artist is solely because people haven’t quite realised his fullest potential yet. The album is truly a masterful piece on some groovy and soulful rock n’ roll riffs.
The self titled album starts off with the ever so popular and consistently quoted and over played Take Me To Church. Don’t get me wrong, it is a beautifully produced sound with a poignant message. But once you listen to the album you’ll realise that isn’t the best piece on there. The magic truly starts from Angel of Death and the Codeine Scene which is a groovy ballad of toxic love and of a woman of a questionable nature. The mysterious lyrics and subtle artistry is on full display here. To those who refer to the lyrics may be able to relate to this much better. There is a complexity of references within those simple lyrics. The song which follows this is Jackie and Wilson, a classic rock n’ roll tune with power chords and power riffs running throughout the song. This song is sure to stay with you long after you’re through with this album. Someone New can be considered as one of the most honest expression of lust and love and its truly confusing nature. These are one of the rare songs that have honest lyrics that are backed by simple musical accompaniment. What this song produces is one magnificent experience. The next song in the album is a testament to Hozier’s mastery of the guitar. His ability to bring around a gritty riff and coupled with his resonant voice, this is one of the truly intimidating songs in this album. If you aren’t still convince make sure you check out the acoustic version of this song. The link will be attached in the end with the credits. It is a difficult transition to a rather cheerful tone with the next tone From Eden. The confusing parallel lyrics of an account of an affair and his love for his wife; this song is brilliant for this reason alone. The fact that it takes a couple of listening sessions to actually understand the meanings that lie between the lines.
What comes next is one of the most beautiful songs of this decade (in my opinion). In a Week, a song tackling the topic of death and the brevity of life. the lyrics are beautiful tied together by the soulful voice of Karen Crowley; whose voice adds an atmosphere that would be amiss without her. Her voice is at par and blending with the tenors of Hozier. The songs Sedated is one of those songs that lingers in your mind and in the room long after it is over. The song has an aftertaste that is worth savouring. Work Song, the next one on the album, is sheer display of Hozier’s vocal capacity; like most of the songs on this album this one is truly intimate and touching. The next song on the list was, according to the artist, inspired by the Irish poet Seamus Heaney and the song Like Real People Do. The singer is said to have used a lot of metaphors and cultural practices to describe a new relationship. The song It Will Come Back is another time told rendition of unrequited love. Though songs of this nature has been overused in almost every genre, what stands out here is the lyrics. The singer expresses his angst and pain by distancing himself from the feeling of love. He creates an image of love that is likened to some form of disease by using the ‘it’ over and over again. The only forgettable song in this eclectic collection is Foreigner’s Gold. The song sometimes tend to lack the panache that is rampant in this album and all of its songs. Lastly, the song Cherry Wine. A haunting delivery that is accentuated by minimal instruments is one of the most heartfelt and enduring songs on this album. A tragic depiction of an abusive relationship , the song makes you almost feel the pain of the victim with every tone. A love song with the most sinister of meanings that will just bring tears to your eyes.
It has been four years since this album. The impact that Hozier has on the music scene is infallible. The fact that he has successfully garnered both commercial and critical acclaim for his debut album is anything but commendable. In a culture that is littered with poorly packaged music, this has surely been a breath of fresh air. Arguably, one of the best singer-songwriter of the 21st century.
Featured Image: https://in.pinterest.com/pin/143763413081390468/
To Be Alone (Acoustic): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcDxk9CSTo8
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