Great Albums You May Have Missed: Hozier’s Self-Titled Debut Raised The Bar for Dark Indie


Alec Willard-Herr

Hozier’s talent showcased in his album is something that will be remembered for years beyond its debut.

Mia Kritzer, Assistant Editor

This article discusses explicit music that may not be suitable for some readers.

If you had access to the internet in 2014, chances are good you stumbled upon Hozier’s breakout single — “Take Me To Church,” a politically influenced Gospel ballad that has garnered more than 415 million views on YouTube. 

Through 15 unforgettable tracks, Hozier weaves together touching tales of love and loss. While these themes are certainly nothing new to the world, Hozier’s soulful and angelic vocals are enough to bring tears to eyes. 

Hints of folk, indie, and blues blend together seamlessly to create a cohesive collection of songs. His band — complete with strings, choir vocals, and soft percussion — compliment each track splendidly. 

Angel Of Small Death” and “It Will Come Back” find Hozier’s sophisticated lyricism and blues influences at the forefront. 

Hozier’s talent is exceptionally showcased in his ability to create deep emotion through sound that is polar opposite from the lyrics.

This style of songwriting is exhibited in the sixth track,“From Eden,” a song that makes you feel as though you are wandering through a lush, grassy landscape. 

In reality, the song depicts a jealous man chasing after his lover who is in a committed relationship. “To the strand, a picnic planned for you and me / a rope in hand for your other man / to hang from a tree,”  Hozier vocalizes.

Without fail, Hozier swiftly transitions between a wide range of subject matter. “To Be Alone” serves as a call to action against rape culture, while tracks like “Jackie and Wilson” and “Someone New” address the thrilling and comforting sensations that accompany a romantic relationship. 

While Hozier’s roaring chorus on “Take Me To Church” demonstrates his dynamic vocal talent and pushed him into the limelight, it’s the tenderness and vulnerability on songs like “To Be Alone” that are the most heavy hitting. 

My favorite track on the album is “Like Real People Do,” as it’s a heartfelt ballad that could tug at any heartstrings. It is the perfect song to soundtrack a warm summer afternoon with the one you love. 

It’s now been seven years since the release, and one sentiment still lives on about the Irishman’s debut album: Hozier’s versatile freshman LP will remain significant for years to come.