The 1975's "A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships" album cover (Photo courtesy of the 1975
El Rancho High School

Album review: ‘A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships’

English pop rock band The 1975 have done it again! The foursome dropped their third studio album “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships” at the end of last month. With their traditional synth-pop sound and a newer, more refreshing smooth jazz element, it’s no wonder that “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships” was a success for the ever-popular band. In fact, “ABIIOR” debuted at number two on the U.S. All Genres chart on iTunes.

The 1975 first started promoting “ABIIOR” in late May when they released the first single “Give Yourself a Try,” and continued to release four other singles before the actual release of the album. Initially, “ABIIOR” was set to be released in October, but the band decided that the release date should be pushed back in order to finalize certain things on the album.

This album sounds much more different than their first, self-titled album or their sophomore album, “i like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it” and a lot of it has to do with the big risk frontman Matty Healy took with experimenting with different sounds.

Healy’s decision to explore new genres was not the only thing that made their newest album sound different. Late last year, Matty spent seven weeks in a rehab facility in Barbados in order to beat his addiction to heroin. Not long after his stint in rehab, he and his bandmates began working on “ABIIOR” with what one might call a “new perspective.” Unlike their previous releases which mainly focused on drugs, partying, and unrequited love, “ABIIOR” focuses on all of that, but through the eyes of someone living their life through the internet.

“ABIIOR” starts off with “The 1975,” a track that has appeared in every single one of their albums. The lyrics have remained the same throughout the years, but the song’s sounds are manipulated with each release to fit the theme of the album. Compared to the previous two versions of the song, the track is heavy on autotune and sounds a bit more dramatic than usual. A perfect way to open up an album that discusses heavy topics such as politics, drug addiction, and our obsession with our online presence.

The next song on “ABIIOR” is “Give Yourself a Try.” This track has an alternative rock feel to it. It has a heavy emphasis on the electric guitar and the drums, making it a perfect dance track! Throughout the song, Healy offers advice that he has accumulated over his twenty-nine years of life. Everything from admitting that most of your friends will come and go to encouraging the youth to go outside more.

Up next is “TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME.” If you thought the previous track was danceable, this one is a hundred times more. “TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME,” is an extremely upbeat song about being unfaithful in the age of social media. The subject of the song might be a bit on the sad side, but this song is so fun, you can’t help but sing along!

Another notable track on “ABIIOR” is “Love It If We Made It.” In my opinion, this song is one of the best songs on the album. This track is one giant social criticism. From the murders of innocent black men to the Syrian refugee crisis to Donald Trump, this song covers it all. Matty’s frustration with society and where it is headed is obvious in this track. The song is sung by Healy in such a manner that it makes you want to yell it at the top of your lungs.

The next song on “ABIIOR” is “Be My Mistake,” a song about the guilt one feels when using another simply for the sake of having a good time. While the other songs are very upbeat and strong in their composition, “Be My Mistake,” is slower and much sadder. The use of the acoustic guitar as the main accompaniment to Matty’s vocals makes it a softer song. Through this track, we see how vulnerable Healy is and how he regrets using this person because he understands how damaging it can be to them.

Up next on “ABIIOR” is “Sincerity is Scary.” This song is about the fear of being ourselves in such a superficial society. Healy believes that we are growing more and more insecure about our true selves and in a sense, “Sincerity is Scary,” is a call-out to those who are living a lie that they’ve created in order to appear more appealing to the masses on social media, This song is very feel-good which makes it almost ironic in a sense.

Another notable track on “ABIIOR” is “The Man Who Married a Robot / Love Theme.” This song is actually not a song, it is more of a story told by a robotic voice that describes the relationship between a man and the internet. There may not be any lyrics or any danceable music in this track, but it is a great social commentary on Healy’s part. Through this song, Matty was able to personify the internet and give deeper insight into our obsession with it.

Next on the album is “It’s Not Living (If It’s Not With You),” a song about Matty Healy’s addiction to heroin. In typical The 1975 fashion, the song’s dark lyrics are masked in an incredibly upbeat song. If you didn’t look up the lyrics to this song, you would never know it’s a song about struggling with addiction. This track oozes elements of classic rock with a synth-pop twist that makes it almost impossible not to dance to!

Up next on “ABIIOR” is “I Couldn’t Be More in Love.” According to Healy, this song is about “what happens when no one cares anymore.” This track is the powerful ballad of the album. With an incredible guitar solo and Matty’s pain-filled vocals, this song is sure to bring tears to the eyes. His vulnerability and insecurity make him all the more relatable.

The final song on “ABIIOR” is “I Always Wanna Die (Sometimes).” This track is about the fascination society has with death. As Matty said in an interview with Genius.com, talking about dying has almost become a meme of sorts and that was what he tried to show with this song. This track serves as the finale to the album and its composition definitely shows that. “I Always Wanna Die (Sometimes),” is dramatic in all aspects. From Healy’s vocals to the ascending guitars to the orchestral ending, this song was the bang that The 1975 needed to end their newest album.

With “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships,” The 1975 have shown that they are a force to be reckoned with. The diverse range of genres in the album, the social commentary in the lyrics, and the deep analysis of the digital age in each song all made this album a masterpiece. While I loved this album with everything I have, I would have to say it is their second best. Nothing can top their first album, “The 1975.” If you’re looking for an album that not only has plenty of bangers but also has a rich sound, then “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships” is the album for you. It is now available on all streaming platforms!

No Comments

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.