Andrew Hozier-Byrne has a new album coming in March. His second album, called Wasteland, Baby!, is his first full-length record in four-and-a-half years. Today we have a new song from the soulful Irish singer called "Almost (Sweet Music)."
In addition to his sweet voice, Hozier's lyrical guitar is the backbone of this song. But the centerpiece are lyrics consisting mostly of song titles from a bygone era. The song references classic jazz standards such as "Stella by Starlight," "Night and Day," "Let the Good Times Roll," "Paper Doll," "The Very Thought of You," "A Love Supreme," "My Foolish Heart," Let's Get Lost" and "Am I Blue," all classic songs of romance and yearning.
The new album follows Hozier's 2018 EP Nina Cried Power which also has a song informed by his love for the world of music. The title (and first) cut on the EP, "Nina Cried Power," name-checks musicians who were strong civil rights advocates, including Nina Simone, Billie Holiday, James Brown, Joni Mitchell and Mavis Staples. Staples also joins Hozier on "Nina Cried Power," and Hozier again makes it the lead-off cut on this new, 14-track album.
In a video announcing the album, you can hear bits of some of his new songs while you see Hozier writing out the track titles on a pad of paper. He eventually gets up and enters what appears to be his mother's art studio; on an easel, the album's artwork is revealed. The oil painting is of Hozier, tossed back in a chair, a glass of (I'm guessing) whiskey in his hand, in a somewhat comfy living room that's submerged underwater. The image of a rocky cliff and a shore below it is painted near his chest. Raine Hozier-Byrne, Andrew Hozier-Byrne's mom, has painted all his iconic cover art, including his EP's and the image from the new album is directly connected to the underwater portrait of her son on the cover of his Nina Cried Power EP.
Wasteland, Baby! is due out March 1 on Columbia Records.
Full track listing: