In March 2013 I heard a song on the radio that immediately sounded like the kind of song that was going to make a big impact on music that year, and it did. The song was Chocolate, and the band was The 1975. Everything about this song sounded like a hit from the beginning, from the instantly singable guitar and bass riffs throughout to the catchy chorus and lyrics, it would mark the moment that the Manchester outfit would begin to feature on the public consciousness.
The band, that is made up of vocalist and rhythm guitarist Matty Healy, lead guitarist Adam Hann, bassist Ross McDonald, and drummer George Daniel, got its start in 2002 when the four classmates decided to form a band. After riding the hype that surrounded Chocolate across the summer of 2013, August would see the next single from the band and the precursor to their self-titled debut album, Sex. Sex continued the aspects that had made Chocolate so exciting and continued to generate hype around the band as fans gravitated towards the rawness of the outfit.
The album that would eventually follow would be a further continuation and development of what we had heard on the singles up to this. A collection of interesting and infinitely catchy indie rock singles, defined by introspective lyrics and driving guitar riffs, it would be very well received by critics and fans alike. It would spawn five single and one of those would be my favourite track from the album, the fantastic, Heart Out, a wonderful song about opening yourself to someone that you have feelings for… And it has that killer saxophone solo.
The album would be followed by an extensive touring schedule by the band, and then fans started to get worried. The band went quite and there was no reports of any new music coming from the band for a few months.
In June 2015, the social media accounts of the band were deleted as part of a marketing campaign to begin to hype up the promotion of their new album. However at the time their was confusion amongst the fans of the band who believed that it was a sign that the band were thinking of breaking up. These fears were quickly put to rest the following day when all the accounts were reinstated with the clues regarding their second LP.
October 2015 would see news of the release details of said second album, which was to be titled I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It, and the lead single from the album, Love Me.
This was followed with single number two, UGH!, in December before my favourite song by the band coming as the third single off the album, The Sound. A fantastic exploration of the effects that someone you care about can have on you, it would dominate radio play in the aftermath of its release. The LP that it came from, which would eventually be released in late February of 2016, would be massively successful for the band and would see the band nominated for Mercury Music Prize for best album.
There is still something somewhat mercurial about The 1975. Their ability to seemingly regulate the hype that surrounds their releases, while maintaining a mystery around what they intend doing next is something that few other bands seem to be capable of. This ability was again seen as word started to spread regarding their third full-length LP.
In March 2018, the band would again start deleting numerous posts from their different social media accounts. The end of April would then see a number of cryptic posters with the text, “Music for Cars” appearing across London and Manchester. Early May would see a countdown timer appear on their website, around the same time that they started to become active again on social media, which would continually publish a secret of enigmatic posters containing the text, A Brief Enquiry into Online Relationships, which would eventually replace Music for Cars as the title of the new album by The 1975.
The lead single from the upcoming album would reach the airwaves on 31 May 2018 with the release of Give Yourself a Try. Give Yourself a Try was a fascinating investigation of the anxiety that we all experience as we are growing up and again showcased the lyricism that made Matt Healy such an interesting front man.
At the time of writing, we are still waiting for A Brief Enquiry into Online Relationships to actually be released with October 2018 marked as the official release time. The 1975 have also said that they intend to release a quick follow up album for next May, entitled Notes on the Conditional Form. It is hard to know what exactly we should expect from these two releases, but one thing is for sure it will be worth paying attention to.