The Irish borderline bluesman Hozier has come out of hiding after four musically barren years with a new EP. ‘Nina Cried Power’ is the four-song precursor to his new album set to drop in 2019. Fans and critics alike may be frustrated with only four songs after four years but the quality of ‘Nina Cried Power’ is undeniable.
Hozier’s lyrics succeed in a whisper or a scream. He serves as both a folk artist and a bluesman through masterful guitar picking on ‘Shrike’ and the soulful bellows found on the title track ‘Nina Cried Power’. The environment created however is nothing new for Hozier. This EP simply wets the appetite of the listener and remind them why anyone wanted to listen four years ago.
The project does embark on a new journey as Hozier tackles one song with a four-letter word. ‘NFWMB’ hosts an explicit chorus that is both subtle and hypnotic. The song displays an impassioned man who needs impassioned words to create a love song.
Hozier shows homage to the soul genre with a gospel choir featured on ‘Moment’s Silence (Common Tongue)’. He also pays a specific tribute to soul legend Mavis Staples by featuring her on the title track. The invitation shows particular value as Hozier and Staples remember several iconic musicians from soul and other genres who cried for power and justice for all people.
Hozier harkens back to the style that brought him fame throughout this EP, but he also shows the listener some new flavors that may lend to more experimentation on his looming 2019 record.
Connor Ferrill, age 21, is a junior at Southeastern Louisiana University. A Communication major, Ferrill loves discovering new music, and serves as 90.9 FM KSLU's afternoon drive time host (3pm-6pm).