The 1975 are one of the emerging British bands in this new breed of talent and it must be said that the hype around this group is huge. With frontman Matt Healy viewed as a major sex symbol thanks to his provocative lyrics and abnormal fashion sense, the group have become an ‘indie sensation’ and are looking to follow on their successes of the eponymous debut album with this work. There was huge anticipation in the build up to this album that the band would provide a new sound and a variety to their musical capabilities. Do they succeed? Let’s find out.
The 1975- 6.5/10
Similar intro to that of the debut album. A decent tone setter but not a lot to it; it’s pretty much just a longer build up to the next song before an abrupt end.
Love Me- 6.5/10
A funk style guitar track on this the lead single of the album. A bizarre vocal that appears a bit all over the place with no one note the same. You can tell that the band are trying to move off in a new, never before heard direction but it just doesn’t seem to work. As they try to create a funk jazz style sound nothing clicks. Okay but nothing more, nothing groundbreaking or revolutionary about it and I must admit I was surprised they released it as a single.
Despite the guitar tune sounding a bit year 6 disco it is overall a fairly good song. An improvement on Love Me as the vocal works effectively in cohesion with the instrumental as it isn’t too straining or particularly mind-blowing. Will probably make you tap your feet a bit but draws a few more blanks than it does fire on target. A lot more like the 1975 style people are used to but in comparison doesn’t come close to Chocolate and Girls.
A Change Of Heart- 8/10
Lovely change of scenery with this song, a softer approach both vocally and instrumentally. Although in the chorus, which contains no lyrics, it sounds like the sort of thing you would hear in a Legend of Zelda game. A strong message of women and how a lifestyle changes their appearance. Quite ironic to diss girls for sleeping around when that’s all he does according to his other music but people will enjoy this song and it’s honesty.
She’s American- 7.5/10
Sped up beat and groovy guitar style, fast paced vocal; almost rapping at the start before fading into a more regular tempo. Much more memorable and usual chorus that works very well with the rest of the song. Lyrically speaking, the song is about another girl he’s met that is American this time and she provides national stereotypes based on Healy’s appearance. Not really the lyrics of a genius but a positive track with a catchy style regardless.
If I Believe You- 6.5/10
Trying to go a bit gospel with this track, limited instruments and a choir in the background to try and maintain that effect but in my eyes it really doesn’t work. Fairly good vocally but that’s about it with this song. Jazz bridge does provide the song with a bit of joy but the song really drags on towards the end. Could hardly describe this song as enjoyable.
Please be Naked- 5.5/10
Mysterious as it gets, no vocal at all but a variety of sounds. Not really sure what the point of it is no matter how soothing a sound it may be. Head scratching as to why the band have actually decided to do a song like this.
Doesn’t do a lot to raise spirits and eradicate boredom but still nice sound mixed with faint blurred vocal. Picks up halfway through but only slightly with no vocal support. Not sure about these two tracks being part of the album really.
The Ballad of Me and My Brain- 7/10
Maintains the choral style in the background but finally Healy’s voice returns fully. Much more like it with a passionate vocal and good all round band contribution. Deep message behind what goes on in his mind and how far it’s brought him. No chorus and just one verse of fully clear vocals which is a bit slack but apart from that I liked this song.
Somebody Else- 8/10
Highly emotional song that shows a really soft side to Matt Healy. Great, catchy instrumental with lyrics poured straight from the heart of Healy himself. Groovy is the word I would use to describe the beat behind it but still not a fast paced, doesn’t destroy motive of the song which is important to the song’s success. Conversation between Healy and what appears to be his conscience in the bridge of the track, questioning whether or not love is actually that important considering the pain it causes.
Loving Someone- 6/10
Underground sound mixed with the alternative twist the band are known for. Taking a step back and analysing his life, perhaps he is too sex orientated and should be focusing on finding true love for the long term. Completely opposite opinion to that of the previous song, showing that his mind isn’t that decisive when it comes to love. Okay song but not a lot to it really, seems a bit like a filler to provide contrast to the previous song.
I like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it- 6.5/10
Another soft vocal with minimal effort seemingly. More focus again on the instrumental trying to sound like an alternative electronic vibe. Song stops halfway through to fade into a similar sound where instruments and sounds are added individually to create a bit of a mesh of noise as the song picks up. Again I’m not sold on the limited vocal but the backing track is soft and easy to listen to.
The Sound- 8/10
Upbeat, much like the debut album hits that made them develop such a strong fan base. Like a modern twist on old school jazz music which works effectively. Definitely a chart hit like ‘Chocolate’ and ‘Girls’ from debut album. Positive message from the track which puts a smile on your face and is impossible to not sing along to. Good track, one of the best on the album.
This Must Be My Dream- 7/10
Keeps positivity going with this toe tapping track, celebrating how this girl makes him feel with “did I tell you about this girl?” They appear to have a set style for these positive songs and it appears to work regularly, catchy being the word that comes to mind. Not as good as previous song but still a solid effort.
Mellows back down but lyrically remains very romantic with dark sides of self harm and drug use in the background as a reminder of the current society we live in and endure on a regular basis. Praise of Paris as a city, connotations of the city of romance. Decent track but not massively memorable for me.
Song dedicated to his late grandma, full of emotion and times he has missed her. Squashes a belief in God but hopes “you are listening.” Rememberance of a moment on her deathbed, instant regret for not saying enough things. He honours her in the best possible way with this heartfelt and beautiful song. Sure to be a relatable song to a huge number of people.
She Lays Down- 7/10
Soft track with just Healy’s vocals and a guitar, non studio version to show pureness and clarity of voice. Clearly about a girl but keeps the emotions of the last track at a similar level. Completely stripped down and a strong way to finish the album which went in all sorts of directions.
I have to admit that I’ve never been a huge fan of the 1975 and as I prepared myself to listen to this album, my expectations weren’t that high; but after listening it I can say it is a lot better than I expected. It’s still not going to be one of the best albums in what is sure to be a talent filled 2016, but fans of the band will absolutely love the more honest sound provided.