The 1975's A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships: What You Need To Know
Two years on from the release of their second album I like it when you sleep for you are so beautiful, yet so unaware of it, which saw the band top the album charts on both sides of the Atlantic, Matthew Healy and co. are back with their third full-length offering.
Given the slightly less wordy title A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships. The band's third album makes its hotly-anticipated arrival in stores today. Here's everything you need to know about it...
A little background...
When The 1975's third album was first mentioned publicly by Healy, it seemed that the album would share a name with the band's third extended play Music For Cars, which arrived in March 2013. However, it was later clarified that 'Music For Cars' would not be the title of an individual album, but he name given to an 'era' of the band, spanning 2018 and 2019.
It was also revealed that this era would include not one but two albums. A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships is the first of these, with a second – titled Notes on a Conditional Form – is currently slated to arrive in May next year. In the meantime, the band are set to embark on a world tour beginning in January 2019.
Who's producing it?
The new album will be the band's first not to be produced by longtime collaborator Mike Crossey. Instead, frontman Matt Healy and drummer/multi-instrumentalist George Daniel are handling the album's production themselves. Crossey has, however, been retained for mixing duties on the new LP.
Any special guests?
Other than The London Community Gospel Choir, who add backing vocals to a handful of tracks, it's just the four lads here.
What does it sound like?
After the polished, 80s-influenced pop of its predecessor, the album does seem to indicate a more experimental approach and there's a lot more scope on offer here in terms of the band's sound, from the frenetic, fizzing guitars and urgent rhythms of 'Give Yourself a Try' to the autotuned vocals and sunny vibes of the dancefloor-friendly 'TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME'.
Elsewhere there's the anthemic stomp of 'Love It If We Made It', the lazy, stuttering swing of the jazz and gospel-influenced 'Sincerity Is Scary' and the pure, unadulterated pop breeziness of 'It's Not Living (If It's Not With You)'.
Does it deliver?
On first listen there's a hell of a lot to unpack on The 1975's third album, but it's immediately obvious that this is arguably the band's most adventurous outing to date, utilising a much broader palette of styles and textures than either of their two previous albums manages in one sitting. Early comparisons to Radiohead's OK Computer aren't particularly helpful or informative – this is a very, very different beast – but in terms of the gusto for stylistic experimentation there is some common ground, even if that's where the comparison between the two ends.
Some tracks are more immediate, others will take a few listens to really enjoy to their fullest, but there's lots for fans to enjoy here and the boys deserve credit for being bold enough to push into new territory in a way that shouldn't alienate those who fell in love with their first two albums.
A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships is out now - you can find it here in our online store.