NOT A SINGLE SKIP – UNAPOLOGETICALLY THEMSELVES!
The British quartet’s new album ‘Being Funny In A Foreign Language’ reached number 1 last week on the Official UK Charts, outselling the rest of the top 5 albums combined. The short but amazingly sweet album of just 44 minutes is an incredible fusion of pop and rock.
The Jack Antonoff produced record flows seamlessly as all songs follow the cool dream pop sound that The 1975 are notorious for. This completely contrasts from their previous album ‘Notes On A Conditional Form’, as its erratic genre-mixing made it confusing and a less enjoyable listen.
The album feels like it was released at the perfect time (not only because Taylor swift dropped the week after) because it has a certain warmth that encapsulates the autumnal spirit – jacket weather, coffee shops and orange leaves.
Frontman, Matty Healy, sings smoothly complimenting the synths, saxophone solos and 80’s funk rock sound on songs such as ‘Happiness‘. Personally, I think the honest, yet random lyrics mirror how chaotic it is to be a young person in 2022. Furthermore, the song writing is so captivating because the lyrics go from completely light-hearted, satirical and cliche in ‘Wintering’ straight into the lyrically rich, emotive ballads in the final 3 tracks. The juxtaposition brings variety and makes the record an interesting and unpredictable listen.
In an interview with Vulture, Healy said: “I think there’s an element of just growing up that you can hear in the record and across it – the way we did it, why we did it and how it sounds”. Perhaps this is the reason the opening song ‘The 1975’ breaks tradition as it’s without the iconic opening of “go down, so soft, midnight, car lights, playing with the air …”. Instead, the band centres the song around the devastatingly beautiful lyric ‘sorry If you’re living and you’re 17’ which seems empathetic and reflects the uncertainty of being a teenager, possibly directed at fans struggling with the transition into being a young adult.
‘About you,’ is the standout track for me, the heartfelt ballad has a bridge that could certainly rival the likes of Taylor Swift but who is the mystery singer? It’s Carly Holt, married to 1975’s own guitarist Adam Hann, the soft female voice compliments Matty’s remarkably.
My final thoughts are that the new album is simply addictive and despite ‘BFIAFL’ being the bands 5th studio album, it is definitely some of their best work to date. The 1975 have perfected their own sound and write with new maturity, empathy and of course underlying humour.