Album: Eat Your Young (EP)
Label: Rubyworks Ltd
Release Date: March 17, 2023
Review Date: April 6, 2023
Reviewer: Adeene Denton
Recommended Tracks: Eat Your Young (the titular single)
Hozier, everyone’s favorite 6-ft lyrical Irishman is celebrating the ten-year anniversary of his haunting work on “Take Me To Church” with a new single that takes his unique combination of lyrical genius and vicious disgust for the ruling class and sen
ds it to new heights. It's his first musical release since October's "Swan Upon Leda," another single, and raises some questions of when his next album might arrive. While there's little news about that floating around the internet, Eat Your Young is a worthy offering to hypnotize listeners for a while. The new single comes with two additional songs, so I'll offer a quick breakdown of all three:
Eat Your Young - the title track of this EP is a return to form for people who thought Wasteland, Baby! was full of too much daydreaming love and not enough burning rage. This is Hozier in his quirky evil mode, a la "Angel of Small Death and the Codeine Scene." This is Hozier in his implied body horror mode, a la [ADD]. If you've ever wanted to set a room of rich people on fire, this is the song the for you. This is dark humor, and I wish the song were twice as long.
All Things End - the first B-side to the EP is for the people who, for whatever reason, wish Hozier's lyrics were less disturbingly specific and more vague platitudes (these people are wrong). This love song sounds like it would play over the credits of a melodramatic 90s romance movie. I am not sure if this is a good or a bad thing. This is Hozier in his hopeful, vibes-based mode, which is inherently less compelling to me. Hozier's love songs are at their most successful when they turn yearning slightly on its head, e.g., wanting to lie down in the earth and decay together (Work Song).
Through Me (The Flood) - more of a middle ground. The sound mixing on this is a little off and somewhat overwhelms at certain points - in particular, the choral backing that Hozier's become so fond of can occasionally wash out his lyrics. While I love googling what Hozier's saying as much as the next entranced fan, it's rough hang for the first listen. That being said, this is a return to the classic "life and death and love and loss can be found in the dirt" mode that I really enjoy. A solid B-side.
Overall, this EP is a solid outing from Hozier, and it's well worth taking a break from your day to give it a listen! You might end up in a fugue state listening to the title track ~14 times, like I did. You might also have a much more normal time - who's to say? Either way, Eat Your Young has something that catches the attention, even if its B-sides are a bit more mixed.