Hozier Releases New EP : Unheard

Hozier has released a brand new EP entitled Unheard. The collection showcases four unreleased tracks from his latest album, Unreal Unearth, which was released last August.
To announce the release, Hozier expressed via social media today, “The ‘Unheard EP’ is out now! It contains four unreleased songs which very nearly made the album”.

Unheard tracklist :
1. Too Sweet
2. Wildflower and Barley
3. Empire Now
4. Fare Well

The songs carry over the gorgeous musicality, instrumentation and dept of lyricism housed throughout the entire Unreal Unearth record. The EP is a welcome extension of Unreal Unearth‘s brilliant expression of love, reflection and all around complex emotion.

Accompanied by bells and a staccato guitar, Hozier sings through the “Too Sweet” chorus, “I take my whiskey neat, my coffee black and my bed at three. You’re too sweet for me, you’re too sweet for me”.
The song was our first introduction to the EP via Hozier’s TikTok. Through a twenty second clip, Hozier sketched a headphone-clad, coffee drinking, smoking skeleton surrounded by music notes, under the lyrics and accompanying music.

“Wildflower and Barley” is beautiful duet featuring Allison Russell, that can’t help the listener feel anything but serene. It caught me a little by pleasant surprise to actual hear the words “unreal unearth” buried in the lyrics. I’ve often wondered if the album’s title was part of a lyric that had escaped from the final cut.

Both the range and power of Hozier’s voice are showcased in “Empire Now”. During the chorus, a heavy electronic, swelling beat juxtaposes tangible strings to create a magnificent ambiance. The reflective lyrics can’t help but make the listener recognize parallels of our current climate and continuous tumult.
“Sun coming up on a dream come ’round, one hundred years from the empire now. Sun coming up on a world that’s easy now, one hundred years from, one hundred years from…”

“Fare Well” begins in a gentle feel, reminiscent to the likes of “Wasteland, Baby!” Hozier masterfully weaves pleasant things with circumstance to sure demise, parallel to his own navigation back up to light.
“And I, I wouldn’t fare well, and I, I couldn’t fare well. Hedgehog-under-a-van-wheel kind of wouldn’t fare well. Out here tryin’ to feel good again, and I, I wouldn’t fare well. A kitten-cosy-in-the-engine type of wouldn’t fare well, dog-deep-into-the-chocolate kind of wouldn’t fare well. Out here tryin’ to feel good again.”
Personally, the song’s chords and guitar strumming couldn’t help but make me smile thinking of Hozier’s obvious Paul Simon influence.

A Hozier fan can’t help but wonder, in which circle of hell would these tracks have resided?
In a statement about the four songs, Hozier expressed, ““These are songs that might’ve made it to the circles of gluttony, limbo, violence, and the outward ‘ascent,’ respectively, but could not for different reasons. I’m very glad I get to share them with you now. I hope you enjoy these new songs and I look forward to perhaps seeing you at an upcoming show soon!”

Hozier is currently touring in support of the Unreal Unearth album and will have several stops around the United States over the upcoming Spring and Summer.

Article by Tiffany “Rune” Cuthrell, featured photo courtesy of Hozier

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