Apocalyptic Love and Wasteland, Baby by Hozier – Time Capsule

Hello and welcome to a little series I plan on doing called Time Capsule, where I – for no particular reason – talk for a while about a song or album I love right now, to look back on later. Feel free to sit back, relax, and maybe have this song playing in the background whilst you read.

Today’s post is about Wasteland, Baby! by Hozier. This is my favourite album of Hozier’s, and my favourite song in his discography is the title track, Wasteland, Baby! I have listened to his music for hours and hours, and this song (along with Nina Cried Power) is one of the songs I will never grow tired of hearing. The soft echo of Hozier’s voice, paired with the simple guitar, creates this magical feeling as if you’re sat there with him, staring into the rubble of what’s left of the world, finding peace in it.

The lyrics ‘and that day that we watch the death of the sun, that the cloud and the cold and those jeans you have on, as you gaze unafraid, as they sob from the city ruins’ is such a harrowing image, but Hozier makes it feel as if this is how it was all meant to be, and there is nothing to fear in the concept of the death of it all.

Photo by David Wirzba on Unsplash

The song is a quiet story about falling in love, and Hozier compares the experience to an apocalyptic event, but not from a negative perspective. The song shares a feeling of being fresh and new as if falling in love with someone is a new opportunity for life to flourish, and despite the end of the planet, love would remain.

I love this song for its distinctively soft quality. Few songs remain soft and delicate throughout the whole piece, and it’s one of Hozier’s (fairly) happy soft songs. One of the things I still see a lot is people talking about Cherry Wine as a love song, which it is not. It’s the story of someone in an abusive relationship, and whilst it’s a moving and incredibly beautiful song, it’s not joyful. Wasteland, Baby! – whilst, yes, admittedly about an apocalypse – is peaceful, and grounding, and one of my favourite songs of all time.

Some of his other softer songs, like Butchered Tongue and I, Carrion have dark undertones. However, if you’re looking for other soft Hozier songs that are more joyful, I recommend Unknown/Nth and Swan Upon Leda.

Some people may not like its stagnancy, and that’s understandable, but I find a lot of enjoyment in it. It’s especially beautiful to me at night, or when the world feels loud to me.

It also has that moment at the end, which is one of my favourite things in songs, where you can hear some background noise or talking from the making of the song, and I love the quiet ‘that’s it’ that’s spoken at the end.

Photo by Joshua Woroniecki on Unsplash

I recommend this song to fans of Mazzy Star, or the Gilmore Girls tv show, or people who like the album Heaven or Las Vegas by the Cocteau Twins. Overall, if you’re just looking for something new to listen to, I would suggest Wasteland, Baby! And whilst you’re at it, give the rest of the album a listen and let me know what you think of it. And if you do end up liking it, some non-Hozier songs I suggest are For Emma by Bon Iver, Snowbank Blues by The Backseat Lovers and Amsterdam by Gregory Alan Isakov.

If you don’t like the song , or the album (or if you do), please let me know why in the comments, I’d love to know your thoughts. Thanks for sticking around, I’ll see you next time.

2 comments

Sarah says:

A great reflection on a hauntingly beautiful song. I understood more about it listening to it again after reading your post, thank you.

Editor says:

Thank you for your comment! I’m glad you listened to it again, and thank you for your kind words. 🙂

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