A new album from Julien Baker couldn't have come at a better time. With things going uniformly bad just about everywhere, the Tennessee singer-songwriter is offering up an anthem of vigorous hope called "Faith Healer." The song appears on Baker's upcoming album Little Oblivions, out February 21 via Matador. Watch the video below:
In a press statement, Baker described the writing of the song and its meanings:
Put most simply, I think that “Faith Healer” is a song about vices, both the obvious and the more insidious ways that they show up in the human experience. I started writing this song 2 years ago and it began as a very literal examination of addiction. For awhile, I only had the first verse, which is just a really candid confrontation of the cognitive dissonance a person who struggles with substance abuse can feel—the overwhelming evidence that this substance is harming you, and the counterintuitive but very real craving for the relief it provides. When I revisited the song I started thinking about the parallels between the escapism of substance abuse and the other various means of escapism that had occupied a similar, if less easily identifiable, space in my psyche.
There are so many channels and behaviors that we use to placate discomfort unhealthily which exist outside the formal definition of addiction. I (and so many other people) are willing to believe whomever—a political pundit, a preacher, a drug dealer, an energy healer—when they promise healing, and how that willingness, however genuine, might actually impede healing.
Baker's last solo project Turn Out The Lights dropped in 2017, and she teamed up with Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus for the indie-rock supergroup boygenius in 2019.