by Rachel Crowell
With haunting melodies and dark themes of death and sacrifice, Hozier’s Eat Your Young promises an outstanding album and fall tour to come. Similar to early albums, the EP is filled with folk and soul-reminiscent melodies. In an interview with the Rolling Stone, Hozier revealed the inspiration for his upcoming album: the 14th century epic Dante’s Inferno. The songs included on the EP represent gluttony and heresy, only 2 of the 9 circles from the ancient epic.
The three songs, “Eat Your Young,” “All Things End,” and “Through Me (The Flood),” are packed with powerful lyrics that grow into ear worms. In the preliminary track, Hozier sings about gluttony and war. The name of the song, “Eat Your Young,” can also be interpreted as a euphemism since the term ‘swallowing kids’ refers to oral sex. Under a different interpretation, Hozier references the horrors of war and sacrifice. It can be assumed that he wrote the song reflecting upon everlasting wartime in countries around the world. As long as people can gain something from war, they’ll sacrifice innocent people. This thought is expressed in the line “skinnin the child for a wardrum. Putting food on the table selling bombs and guns.” This first song of the EP is the most intriguing.
The entire EP is sinister yet hopeful, recalling the loss of a partner or loved one in the second track, “All Things End.” Despite its melancholy name, Hozier makes an effort to point out that despite his morbid predictions, it is still necessary to begin again. In the final track “Through Me (The Flood),” Hozier compares his relationship with his partner to his relationship with the earth. He does not oppose his partner when they collide, they simply become one. He compares this to swimming in the ocean at the beginning of the song: once a wave hits him, he doesn’t drown, but instead moves with the wave. He finishes the song singing, “the world flows through me.” This song is a spectacular finish to the short tracklist because it offers resolution to the short story told in the three songs. He does not simply fall down and get back up, he falls down and becomes the earth.
Eat Your Young is an excellent showcase of Hozier’s talent and what’s to come from his new music. It is clear that Hozier’s loyal fanbase is also excited for the upcoming album – the tour was sold out within days of tickets going on sale. Although the release date for the full album has yet to be announced, fans can expect it to come out later this year (hopefully before the tour).