Intense, funny, eclectic, moving. These are all words that can describe the 1975’s latest album, A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships.
We go from the dance-inspired “TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME,” to the Bon Iver-inspired “How To Draw / Petrichor,” the ’80s pop anthem “It’s Not Living (If It’s Not With You),” to the gospel choir-backed “Sincerity is Scary.” The track “The Man Who Married a Robot” is a 21st-century take of Radiohead’s “Fitter Happier.”
Indeed, the hyper-modern genre-hopping seems to be a commentary on how today we have instant access to Wikipedia facts, friends’ social media profiles and 24-hours news. In other words, too much at once. What’s great about A Brief Inquiry’ is that the 1975 pulls all this off, and that has just as much to do with the lyrics as the music.
Crack open “Love It If We Made It” and you hear Matty Healy listing the world’s problems like they’re his to solve. Ditto for the album closer “I Always Wanna Die (Sometimes),” where he contemplates a very real truth: modern life is exhausting.
For anyone who doubts the emotional complexities and awareness of young people in the Internet era, please show them this album. Sure, life is exhausting, but we’re trying to make the best of it.
When he’s not writing about music, Carlo Thomas is a digital marketer who currently lives in Denver, Colorado.