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Video of the Moment #2134: Hozier

 
By on Saturday, 9th July 2016 at 10:00 am
 

We would probably be remiss as music journalists if we passed over Irish blues rock troubadour Hozier‘s latest single ‘Better Love’, which was released back in June and will feature on the soundtrack to the original motion picture ‘The Legend of Tarzan’. ‘Better Love’ is Hozier’s first release of new music since his self-titled debut album in late 2014 and the whirlwind year-and-a-half of touring that followed it.

Hozier has a history of using his music videos to make grand social statements, beginning with the controversial video for his first single ‘Take Me to Church’ and continuing with his Valentine’s Day 2016 charity video for ‘Cherry Wine’. In a recent interview with Esquire magazine, Hozier explains that the ‘Better Love’ video alludes to the destructive aftermath of European colonialism in Africa. That context lends meaning beyond simple romance to the song’s lyrics, particularly the pleading lines “when our truth is burned from history / by those who figure justice in fond memory / witness me.”

Hozier’s new single ‘Better Love’ is available now. TGTF’s extensive previous coverage of Hozier is right back here.

 

(Charity!) Video of the Moment #2019: Hozier

 
By on Saturday, 20th February 2016 at 10:00 am
 

This week, Irish singer/songwriter Hozier unveiled the video for his new single release ‘Cherry Wine’.  In a rather ironic twist on the weekend’s Valentine’s Day festivities, the ‘Cherry Wine’ video highlights a darker facet of romantic relationships, namely domestic violence and abuse.  Using the hashtag #faceuptodomesticviolence, Hozier released the song and its accompanying video as “a clarion call” to promote awareness of the issue.  Along with his record labels and publishers, Hozier will donate proceeds from the downloads of ‘Cherry Wine’ to “a series of international domestic abuse charity organisations which provide support to victims and survivors of domestic abuse, while also engaging in advocacy and community outreach.”

Though the song itself is written from the perspective of a male abuse victim, the accompanying video features Saoirse Ronan as the abused party, alongside fellow actor Moe Dunford and video director Dearbhla Walsh.  You can find more information about ‘Cherry Wine’, including a download link for the single and resources for those suffering from domestic abuse, by clicking here.

 

Hozier / January and February 2016 UK Tour

 
By on Thursday, 3rd September 2015 at 8:00 am
 

Following on a relentless 2 years of touring, Novello Award-winning singer/songwriter Hozier has announced a list of live dates in the UK for early next year. This will be Hozier’s last run of shows in the UK before he heads back into the studio to work on his second album, the follow up to his self-titled debut from last October.

Tickets for the following shows will be available for general sale tomorrow, Friday, the 4th of September, at 9 AM.  Our extensive previous coverage of Hozier, including a live review from the 9:30 Club in Washington DC, can be found right back here.

Friday 8th January 2016 – Edinburgh Usher Hall
Saturday 9th January 2016 – Manchester Apollo
Monday 11th January 2016 – Sheffield Academy
Tuesday 12th January 2016 – Liverpool Empire
Friday 29th January 2016 – London Brixton Academy
Tuesday 2nd February 2016 – Birmingham Academy
Thursday 4th February 2016 – Portsmouth Guildhall
Friday 5th February 2016 – Cardiff St. David’s Hall

 

Hozier / May and June 2015 UK Tour

 
By on Tuesday, 9th December 2014 at 8:00 am
 

Irish blues rock phenomenon Hozier has announced five new live dates for next spring, following on his already sold out winter tour of the UK. The sold out shows include rescheduled dates for Oxford and Birmingham as well as two shows at Shepherds Bush Empire in London. The newly-announced spring tour will begin in Newcastle on the 22nd of May and finish with Hozier’s biggest live show to date at the London Roundhouse on the 1st of June.

Tickets for the May and June shows will be available starting Friday the 12th of December at 9 AM. A full listing of Hozier‘s upcoming UK tour dates can be found below.

Sunday 21st December 2014 – Belfast Ulster Hall (sold out)
Wednesday 21st January 2015 – Oxford Academy (rescheduled date, sold out)
Friday 23rd January 2015 – Birmingham Institute (rescheduled date, sold out)
Saturday 31st January 2015 – London Shepherd’s Bush Empire (sold out)
Sunday 1st February 2015 – London Shepherd’s Bush Empire (sold out)
Friday 22nd May 2015 – Newcastle Academy
Monday 25th May 2015 – Manchester Albert Hall
Wednesday 27th May 2015 – Glasgow Barrowland
Thursday 28th May 2015 – Leeds Academy
Monday 1st June 2015 – London Roundhouse

 

Video(s) of the Moment #1685: Hozier

 
By on Saturday, 22nd November 2014 at 10:00 am
 

Irish singer/songwriter Hozier has upped the ante once again, unveiling not one but two separate videos for his recent single ‘From Eden’. The song features on both his self-titled debut album and the earlier ‘From Eden’ EP. The album version of the song is slightly different to the EP version, and the new official video highlights one of the main differences between the two iterations, namely the slithering, flamenco-flavoured instrumental bridge. The video takes a slightly off-kilter view of the oft-celebrated Bonnie and Clyde scenario, perfectly synching the crisis point of the dramatic action with the aforementioned bridge section.

In addition to the official video, Sofar Sounds have just premiered a live performance video from Hozier’s appearance at their Manchester showcase back in September. The intimate Manchester performance features a stripped back version of ‘From Eden’, emphasising Hozier’s soulful singing and bluesy acoustic guitar chops over his sense of dramatic flair. The skillfully edited video below demonstrates both the high quality of Hozier’s musicianship and the cozy, informal atmosphere that has become synonymous with Sofar Sounds. Watch both below.

 

Live Review: Hozier with James Bay at 9:30 Club, Washington DC – 4th November 2014

 
By on Monday, 10th November 2014 at 2:00 pm
 

Photos by Cheryl Demas, except where noted

Shows at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC are always worth traveling for, even, as in this case, when the travel involves multiple time zones and full days spent on airplanes. I always have to remind myself that as difficult as the travel might be for me, it’s often a Herculean effort for the musicians actually giving the show. Irish singer/songwriter Hozier has been on tour almost non-stop since March of this year, when he played SXSW in Austin, pausing only to record his self-titled debut studio album that was released in October. His show at the 9:30 Club last Tuesday night marked the penultimate stop on his North American tour, preceding two shows in New York and the start of a lengthy tour through the UK and Europe.

James Bay at 9:30 Club 4th November 2014

Hozier’s special guest on this leg of the American tour was Hitchin born singer/songwriter James Bay. Joined on stage by colleague Gerry Morgan on piano and percussion, Bay played an opening set of earnest, bluesy love songs that were a perfect warm up for Hozier’s more intense, r&b-influenced style. There were clearly some longtime James Bay fans in the audience, as evidenced by the squeals, sighs and singing along in the more unabashedly romantic moments. Recent single ‘Let It Go’ was particularly effective, as was slow burner ‘Move Together’.

In the fashion of a performer more accomplished than his youthful age, Bay closed his set with his strongest effort, upcoming single ‘Hold Back the River’. Stay tuned to TGTF for more coverage on James Bay leading into his recently announced scheduled appearance at SXSW 2015. Bay is set to embark on a tour of the UK and Ireland later this month. His next single ‘Hold Back the River’ is due for release on the 23rd of November via Republic Records.

Gerry Morgan and James Bay at 9:30 Club, 4th November 2014

When I first saw Hozier at SXSW 2014 as part of Communion’a showcase at St. David’s Church, his songs were still new to most of us, and although the response was unquestionably positive, audience members seemed stunned into silence by the sheer power of his musicianship and songwriting. A mere 8 months later, the full-to-capacity crowd in Washington, DC clearly knew exactly what to expect. There was much singing along, cheering and a few cheeky requests (some music-related, some not) shouted from the back of the room. Hozier himself took this in stride, looking a bit dazed but keeping his cool as he played through his set list with a minimal amount of banter between songs.

Hozier at 9:30 Club, 4th November 2014

Because Hozier currently has only one album of songs to draw from, his set list was somewhat predictable, though there were a few small surprises. He opened with a lesser known ballad, ‘Like Real People Do,’ then immediately followed it with the energetic groove of ‘Angel of Small Death and the Codeine Scene’. He politely provided us with the title of each song before he played it, giving brief explanations for his cover of Skip James’ ‘Illinois Blues’ and the earthy folk song ‘In a Week’, which he performed here in a lovely duet with cellist and vocalist Alana Henderson.

Hozier and Alana Henderson at 9:30 Club, 4th November 2014
photo by Carrie Clancy

Alana Henderson at 9:30 Club, 4th November 2014

Rather than saving hit track ‘Take Me to Church’ for the encore, Hozier chose to play it at the end of the set proper. After an appropriate interval for applause, he returned to the stage to play a rather unexpected cover of American r&b singer Amerie’s hit single ‘1 Thing’ before closing with his own current American radio single ‘From Eden’.

Naturally, when Hozier took the stage, the focus was squarely on him. But his unassuming stage demeanour left plenty of space for his band members to display their talents as well. Hozier’s entourage of accomplished touring musicians are worth noting, as they bring the full range of color to his songs, from the dark gospel of ‘Take Me to Church’ to the dance pop leanings of ‘Sedated’. Henderson was an indispensable part of that sound, along with bassist Alex Ryan, keyboardist Mia Fitz and backing vocalists Ruby Amanfu and Rachael Lampa.

Drummer Rory Doyle was familiar to my gig partner Cheryl and me, having toured in America previously with Bell X1. The fact that Doyle has worked on albums by both Hozier and Bell X1 is a testament to the versatility of his musicianship and an example of the calibre of the other musicians on the stage, including Hozier himself. The cooperative spirit of the performance was neatly emphasised at the end of the night when the full band took a curtain call to close the show.

Rory Doyle at 9:30 Club, 4th November 2014

Hozier curtain call, 9:30 Club, 4th November 2014

Hozier will play live dates in the UK and Europe through November and December before returning to America early next year. A full listing of shows can be found on Hozier’s official Web site.

After the cut: James Bay and Hozier’s set lists.
Continue reading Live Review: Hozier with James Bay at 9:30 Club, Washington DC – 4th November 2014

 
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About Us

There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington, DC. She is joined by writers in England, America and Ireland. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

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