After a break following the release of his debut self-titled album Hozier, whatever Hozier had released would’ve been absolutely adored by fans, I’m sure. However, Andrew did not simply release an album in 2019 – he released a masterpiece, called Wasteland, Baby!
It seems impossible to imagine the top album releases of this year and not feature this one. With the iconic songs ‘Nina Cried Power’ and ‘To Noise Making (Sing)’ encouraging some intense sing-a-longs (or shout-a-longs…) gracing the album, combined with the quieter, softer tones of ‘Wasteland, Baby!’, which encapsulates the beautifully hypnotising power of music, this album has a little something for everyone to enjoy. It was clear from his debut that Hozier possessed vocals which can span across genres, and Wasteland, Baby! further proved this.
In a year of rising stars, new bands and (painfully repetitive) pop stars, Wasteland, Baby! provided an album to listen to in order to escape from the ‘normal’. Despite some songs gracing radio stations upon its release, like ‘Movement’, there remains a couple songs untarnished by radio play, like ‘Would That I’ (which is undoubtly addictively uplifting) and ‘As It Was’, possessing a haunting tone with some of the most powerful vocals on the album.
It is entirely impossible to pick a favourite from this album, as each song seems to possess a different loveable quality. ‘Movement’ is up there with one of the most beautiful songs on the album in its combination of powerful vocals and simplistic music, whilst ‘Would That I’ is extremely catchy. ‘Be’ and ‘No Plan’ are also worthy of mentioning for their more upbeat vibes which, I would argue, make them rather unique.
Wasteland, Baby! shows the progression of Hozier into perhaps more edgy terriority, with more haunting tunes appearing on it than his self-titled. It’s clear he has not strayed too far from his roots though, as there is definitely reminiscent elements of the spectacular single ‘Take Me To Church’ appearing.
Hozier’s Wasteland Baby is available via Island Records.