The highly-anticipated third studio album by The 1975 has finally dropped. “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships” is bold and unique, and is a strong contender for album of the year.
The 1975 broke on to the scene in 2013 with their iconic debut, self-titled album. The album was praised for its genuine, albeit troubled, nature. Then, in 2016, the band released their follow up “I like it when you sleep…” which only proved that the band had only gotten better, bringing a more mature, vibrant sound to their gloomy aesthetic.
Now, they have released their best work yet. “A Brief Inquiry” takes a closer look at living life in the modern age. Lead singer and lyricist, Matty Healy, discusses robots, heartbreak and mental health.
A totally innovative, imaginative and genuine album, “A Brief Inquiry” is what music needed. The 1975 has redefined what it means to make an alternative album, some songs branching off into completely different genres.
Singles like “Give Yourself A Try” and “Sincerity Is Scary” give the album something familiar and catchy. It’s the most pop-inspired the album gets. “Be My Mistake” is a ballad that has Healy’s sugar-sweet vocals crooning “You do make me hard / But she makes me weak.”
“The Man Who Married A Robot” provides some sad criticism of our digital day and age. “It’s Not Living (If It’s Not With You)” is a pop-rock track that feels like traditional 1975 music. A welcome sound, but not the most interesting on the album.
“A Brief Inquiry” ends with “I Always Wanna Die (Sometimes).” This song closes the album out in a dramatic, grand ending. A song that isn’t anything less than epic, Healy’s voice is backed by a slow beat that builds as the song starts to end. What starts as a ballad ends like a classic rock sound, complete with strings as Healy belts out “Always wanna die.”
The album’s production is their best yet. Produced mainly by Healy and drummer George Daniel, “A Brief Inquiry” is their most interesting album, and feels classic and modern all at once. Some critics have likened it to Radiohead’s “OK Computer.” Others have compared it Bon Iver’s autotune style.
The band isn’t afraid to be bold, as we have seen with previous releases, and their music always teeters on the edge of too much. But they balance it quickly with sarcastic, light-hearted and quippy lyrics.
It’s got jazz, blues and traditional rock all in one. It’s funny, it’s heartbreaking and it’s ingenious. Critics can say it’s Radiohead or Bon Iver or whoever, but at its heart and soul, “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships” is truly just The 1975.
Article by Lindsey Lanham