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The 1975: Biography and History

The 1975

The 1975
The 1975

About The 1975 Music Band

The name, The 1975, was inspired by a Jack Kerouac poetry book that had “1 June, The 1975” written on the back. During the early days of the band, they would perform punk covers in local clubs until they started to write music themselves.

The 1975 are an English pop-rock band formed in 2002 in Wilmslow, Cheshire. Now based in Manchester, the band consists of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Matthew “Matty” Healy, lead guitarist Adam Hann, bassist Ross MacDonald, and drummer George Daniel.

The band’s origins are traced to their attendance at Wilmslow High School and playing together as teenagers. Gigs, organized by a council worker, led the band to sign with Dirty Hit and Polydor Records. The band opened for several major acts and released a series of extended plays (Facedown, Sex, Music for Cars, IV) throughout 2012 before releasing their UK chart-topping self-titled debut album (2013), which included the popular singles “Sex”, “Chocolate”, and “Robbers”.

Their second album, I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It (2016), reached No. 1 in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Following the touring cycle for the record, the band announced their third album under the working title of Music for Cars, before going on hiatus again throughout 2017.

Returning in 2018, the band announced that the album had evolved into their third campaign cycle, consisting of their third and fourth studio albums. The first, A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships (2018), was released to widespread critical acclaim and became their third No. 1 album in the UK. The second, Notes on a Conditional Form, was released in May 2020 and became their fourth consecutive No. 1 album in the UK.

The 1975 has garnered acclaim for its relevant lyricism and exploration of an eclectic range of genres such as pop-rock, synth-pop, R&B, electropop, new waveforms of electronic music (such as UK garage, 2-step, and ambient), and forms of rock music (such as shoegaze, post-punk and post-rock), as well as elements of jazz, soul, and gospel.

The 1975 Biography

Britain’s ever-evolving the 1975 balances hooky dance-rock and adult contemporary sophistication with arty forays into electronica and Auto-Tuned pop. It was a sound they first debuted on 2013’s The 1975, which brought them international stardom, topping the charts in the U.K. and reaching the Top 30 on the Billboard 200. While they have remained chart regulars, hitting number one with 2016’s I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It, and number four with 2018’s A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships, they have continued to experiment with their sound, embracing an ever-more genre-bending pop aesthetic.
Originally, the members of the 1975 met in 2002 while attending high school in Wilmslow, Cheshire, a suburb of Manchester. There, lead singer Matthew Healy, guitarist Adam Hann, bassist Ross MacDonald, and drummer George Daniel started out covering punk songs and playing at local all-ages shows before inevitably beginning to explore their own original material. In 2012, they released their first EP, Facedown, on the U.K. indie label Dirty Hit, and soon thereafter supported Little Comets on their nationwide tour. The lead track from the debut EP, “The City,” was played on Huw Stephens’ BBC Radio 1 show, and the quartet’s energetic live performances endeared them to crowds, while their presence began to sweep across music blogs. Toward the end of 2012, the band released the Sex EP, and the title track was played by influential BBC Radio 1, DJ Zane Lowe.

In 2013, a third EP appeared, spawning the U.K. Top 20 single “Chocolate.” The band’s popularity continued to rise as they played shows across the U.K., and were also invited to perform at the industry showcase SXSW in conjunction with a U.S. tour. That same year, the 1975 delivered their eponymous debut full-length, recorded with producer Mike Crossey (Arctic Monkeys, Foals). Featured on the album were several previously released tracks, including “Chocolate” and “Sex,” as well as the singles “Settle Down” and “Girls,” the latter of which peaked at number 12 on the U.S. Billboard Hot Rock Songs chart. A number one album in the U.K., The 1975 helped build the band’s reputation in the States, where it reached number 28 on the Billboard 200.

The 1975 returned in 2016 with their sophomore full-length album, the Crossey-produced I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It. Featuring the singles “Love Me” and “The Sound,” it found the band moving toward a more ’80s adult contemporary pop and R&B-influenced style. To promote the album, the band toured the U.K., Europe, and North America, and made a high-profile appearance on Saturday Night Live. The album debuted at number one in the U.K. and the U.S. and was shortlisted for the esteemed Mercury Prize. In February 2017, the band released a cover of Sade’s “By Your Side” to benefit the U.K. charity group War Child.
The band’s third full-length, A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships, arrived in 2018 and featured the Grammy-nominated single “Give Yourself a Try.” Showcasing an even more eclectic mix of pop sounds, the album reached number four on the Billboard 200. The album was also the first part of a two-album release, with the second album (and the 1975’s fourth full-length) Notes on a Conditional Form, arriving in May 2020. Along with a spoken word track featuring Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg, Notes on a Conditional Form also included the spotlight tracks “People,” “If You’re Too Shy (Let Me Know),” and “The Birthday Party” with guest Phoebe Bridgers.

History

2002–2011: Formation

Matty Healy, the son of actors Denise Welch and Tim Healy, grew up in Newcastle and Cheshire. He met Ross MacDonald, Adam Hann, and George Daniel at Wilmslow High School in Wilmslow in 2002; as teenagers, they played together. The band was formed when the local council worker organized numerous gigs for teens. Matty Healy found Hann who “came up to [him] and said he wanted to play one of these shows.” The band began playing covers until they “eventually wrote a song”, according to Healy. “We started from then and we’ve been making music together since we were about 15.” After Hann invited the members to form a band, they passed their early days covering punk songs in a local club. Healy was originally the drummer but took over vocals after the previous singer left to start another band (this being Elliot Williams of the indie rock band Editors). George Daniel was recruited as the new drummer to complete the final line-up.

The band formerly performed under the names Me and You Versus Them, Forever Drawing Six, Talkhouse, the Slowdown, Bigsleep, and Drive Like I Do, before settling on The 1975. Healy recounts that the name was inspired by deranged and “mental” scribblings found on the back page of the book On The Road by Jack Kerouac that was dated “1 June, The 1975”.

2012–2014: Early career and self-titled debut album

The band’s self-titled debut album was recorded with Arctic Monkeys collaborator Mike Crossey. Between Autumn 2012 and Spring 2013, during which time the album was recorded, the band released four EPs. They toured to support and build momentum for the album, including numerous gigs and special appearances with other artists.

The album received positive reviews from critics and topped the UK Albums Chart on 8 September. As of March 2016, it had sold 410,981 copies in the UK, and 390,000 copies in the US.

The release of the band’s first EP, titled Facedown, in August 2012 saw the band’s first UK airplay on national radio with lead track “The City”, which was also featured as part of a BBC Introducing show with Huw Stephens on BBC Radio 1. The 1975 once again garnered national radio attention in late 2012, with BBC Radio 1 DJ Zane Lowe championing their single “Sex” from the eponymous EP, which was released on 19 November. They embarked on the United Kingdom and Ireland tour extended into early 2013, before beginning a US tour in Spring 2014. Upon the release of Music for Cars on 4 March 2013, the 1975 found mainstream chart success with “Chocolate”, reaching number 19 in the UK Singles Chart. On 20 May 2013, the band released IV, which included a new version of “The City”. The track charted in the UK and received airplay in several other countries.

The 1975 toured extensively to support releases and to build hype before releasing their debut. The band supported Muse on the second leg of The 2nd Law World Tour at the Emirates Stadium in London on 26 May 2013. They also toured with the Neighbourhood in the United States in June 2013, and supported the Rolling Stones in Hyde Park on 13 July. In August, the band performed on the Festival Republic Stage at the 2013 Reading and Leeds Festivals.

In a feature article, Elliot Mitchell of When the Gramophone Rings wrote that releasing a string of EPs before the debut album was “a move that he deemed necessary to provide context to the band’s broad sound, rather than just building up with singles alone.” Healy said, “We wouldn’t have been able to release the album without putting out the EP’s first, as we wanted to make sure we could express ourselves properly before dropping this long, ambitious debut record on people.”

Their self-titled debut, The 1975, was released on 2 September 2013, co-produced by Mike Crossey, known for his work with Arctic Monkeys and Foals.[36] The 1975 were selling out shows even before the debut of their full-length album as Healy recalled in an interview with Larry Heath of The AU Review. The lead single was a re-worked “Sex”, which was released on 26 August 2013. The song premiered on Zane Lowe’s BBC Radio 1 show on 8 July 2013, and a music video premiered on YouTube on 26 July. The 1975 debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart.
The 1975 toured in the UK in September 2013, among others performing in Kingston upon Hull as headliners at Freedom Festival, a celebration of the city’s shortlisting for 2017 UK City of Culture designation, and at iTunes Festival on 8 September as an opening act for indie electronic quartet Bastille. The band undertook a North American tour in October, a European in November, and in January 2014 the band performed in New Zealand and Australia. In September 2013, the band performed three sold-out shows at London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire. In April 2014, the band performed for the first time at a major American music and arts festival: Coachella. The band played at Royal Albert Hall the same month. In May, the band’s recorded output was distributed digitally while they were touring North America. Healy noted that the band had a recording scheduled in Q2 2015.

2015–2017: I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It

On 1 June 2015, the band’s social accounts were terminated, which caused intense speculation. A comic strip was posted on Healy’s Twitter a day prior but was later posted on their manager’s (Jamie Oborne) account, which suggested the band’s break-up. The next day, the accounts were reinstated, but the cover images and profile photos were white and light pink, instead of the usual black and white, revealing it to be a publicity stunt.
On 8 October, the band announced their second album, I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It. They premiered the lead single, “Love Me”, simultaneously scheduling a support tour in Europe, North America, and Asia. They premiered the second single, “UGH!”, on 10 December on Beats 1. The album’s third single, “The Sound” debuted on BBC Radio 1 on 14 January 2016.  The 1975 released the fourth single “Somebody Else” on 15 February on Beats 1 before the album’s release. “A Change of Heart” premiered on Radio 1 on 22 February, four days prior to the album’s release.

NME, who had previously been highly critical of the band, praised the album for its scope and ambition, writing that “Any record that burrows as deep into your psyche as ‘I Like It…’ should be considered essential. It’s hugely clever and wryly funny, too.” They later named it their Album of the Year for 2016. Although music journalist Alexis Petridis noted that parts of the album were over-ambitious, he went on to claim that “incredibly, though, most of the time Healy gets away with it. That’s sometimes because his observations are sharp — as a skewering of celebrity squad culture, ‘you look famous, let’s be friends / And portray we possess something important / And do the things we like’ is pretty acute — but more usually because they come loaded with witty self-awareness and deprecation: the endless depictions of vacuous, coke-numbed girls he has met would get wearying were it not for the fact that he keeps turning the lyrical crosshair on himself.” In a more mixed review, Rolling Stone criticized tracks like “Lostmyhead” and “Please Be Naked” for being “boring-melty” but praised songs such as “Somebody Else,” “Loving Someone” and “Love Me”.
The album was released on 26 February and topped the UK Albums Chart and the US Billboard 200. The band released a free download for “How to Draw” on Twitter and through Target Exclusive. It was shortlisted for the 2016 Mercury Music Prize and nominated for Album of the Year at the 2017 Brit Awards.

2017–2019: A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships

On 13 November 2016, member George Daniel teased the band’s third album by releasing a video on his Instagram account captioned “2018”, containing snippets of audio along with Healy playing the keyboards.[64]

On 3 April 2017, Healy tweeted “I like it when you sleep is coming to an end” (sic) before following up with “Music for Cars”, which shares the name of their third extended play.[65] In March 2017, the band confirmed that two songs for the new album have already been written.[66] In June, Healy also confirmed that Drive Like I Do, one of the 1975’s prior incarnations, will release a debut album as a side project ‘in a few years.

In November, Healy teased the release of an EP within 2017. Besides being confirmed, the EP was delayed to 2018, with manager Jamie Oborne stating that “something” would be released instead; this was the band’s debut live album, DH00278. He also confirmed that no singles from Music for Cars will be released in 2017, with the band confirming that something will be released on 1 June 2018.

In March 2018, the band deleted many media posts across their accounts going back to July 2017, during their final show at Latitude Festival for I Like It When You Sleep, for You Are So Beautiful yet So Unaware of It. On 22 April 2018, in response to a fan comment on Twitter, Oborne stated that their second album’s campaign would remain for “a few more days”. At the end of April, cryptic posters titled “Music for Cars” appeared in London and Manchester, containing taglines and a Dirty Hit catalogue number, DH00327, amongst a black background. Various billboards were also spotted in the United Kingdom, having used détournement to apply themselves over existing advertisements.

The band updated their website to display a timer counting down towards 1 June at the beginning of May 2018, becoming active again on social media. Within its first hours, it was revealed to contain a hidden zip file with four individual posters, each of the names leading to a hidden page on the website that displayed a conversation between a ‘human’ and a ‘machine’. Over social media, the band frequently released different posters, all titled “A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships”. On 31 May 2018, the band released the single “Give Yourself a Try”, after premiering as Annie Mac’s “Hottest Record in the World” on BBC Radio 1 that same day.

The album garnered almost universal praise from critics. According to review aggregator Metacritic, the album has received a weighted score of 83 based on 29 reviews, indicating “universal acclaim”. Ryan Dombal of Pitchfork gave the album a score of 8.5, earning it the Best New Music tag, and called it “outrageous and eclectic”, as well as “similar to its predecessor in its boundless sense of style, swerving from Afrobeats to brushed-snare jazz balladry to one track that sounds like a trap remix of a Bon Iver ayahuasca trip”, but “more purposeful” than I Like It When You Sleep.[27] Time considered it one of the Best Albums of 2018, placing it at number nine on their list.

However, Conrad Duncan writing for the same site gave the album a positive review, calling it “full of genuine heart, intelligence and wit”. Popmatters criticized the album as bloated and inconsistent, stating “The band’s reach exceeds their grasp here, and vocalist/band leader Matt Healy’s indulgences are often more tiresome than charming”, while still praising it as “fascinating”. Healy, in an interview for Beats 1, stated that “Music for Cars” is more of an era to release music, after renaming Music for Cars to A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships. It was released on 30 November 2018. The band headlined both Radio 1’s Big Weekend in Stewart Park, Middlesbrough on 26 May 2019 and the Reading and Leeds Festival in August 2019.

The album was shortlisted for the 2019 Mercury Music Prize[86] and won the award for British Album of the Year at the 2019 Brit Awards.

2019–2021: Notes on a Conditional Form

On 24 July 2019, the opening song of Notes on a Conditional Form, titled “The 1975”, was released, featuring climate activist Greta Thunberg, the proceeds of the song going to Extinction Rebellion. The lead single, entitled “People” was released on 22 August 2019. This was announced by a countdown on the band’s social media accounts, including small snippets of lyrics from the song that fans could piece together. A second single, titled “Frail State of Mind”, was released on 24 October. The music video for the song was released on 30 November 2019. The next single, “Me & You Together Song”, was released on 16 January 2020.

On 15 February, the group did their UK tour that lasted until 3 March 2020. The tour began in Nottingham’s Motor point arena, which holds a capacity of 10,000, and they ended their tour in Dublin after performing in Places such as London’s O2, Manchester, Glasgow, and other hit places in the UK. On 17 February 2020, the band put up a “digital detox” website called MindShowerAI which contained a countdown to their next single as well as several odd messages like “I am doing my mind and my life!” and “I feel comfort and respect.” A fourth single, ‘The Birthday Party, was released on 19 February 2020 at the end of the website’s countdown. On 3 April, the band released “Jesus Christ 2005 God Bless America”, featuring guest vocals from Phoebe Bridgers, which was followed by “If You’re Too Shy (Let Me Know)”, featuring guest vocals by FKA Twigs, on 23 April 2020.

The band’s fourth album, Notes on a Conditional Form, was released on 22 May 2020. It became the band’s fourth consecutive album to reach number one on the UK Albums Chart as well as reaching number one in Australia and number four in the United States. On 4 December 2020, the album became certified silver in the UK via Brits certified.

2021–present: Drive Like I Do, No Rome

Entering 2021, many of the band’s 2020 shows that were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic were ultimately canceled on 12 January 2021. During this time, lead singer Matty Healy teased future music under the name “Drive Like I Do”, and said that the band was working on their fifth studio album, although there was no indication as to when writing, recording, mixing, etc. would be complete.

In February 2021, another Dirty Hit signed musician called No Rome announced he was working on a track featuring The 1975 along with Charli XCX, which would make it the second No Rome single to feature the band after 2018’s “Narcissist”. The track’s title is “Spinning” and was released on 4 March 2021. An EP that Healy and Daniel produced and co-wrote, Beabadoobee’s Our Extended Play, was released in March 2021.

In October 2021, Healy opened for Phoebe Bridgers at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on her Reunion Tour. He performed two new songs, one called “New York”.

On 14 February 2022, the band deactivated its main social media accounts, hinting at new material.

References

  1.  Bono, Salvatore (16 September 2013). “Speaking With Your New Favorite Band — The 1975”The Huffington Post. Retrieved 5 May 2015.
  2. ^ “Matt Healy of the 1975 says ‘my biggest fear is becoming Sting'”The Independent. 12 February 2016. Retrieved 28 July 2019It’s true that the band formed at Wilmslow High School, south of Manchester
  3. Jump up to:a b The 1975 (15 October 2012). “Interview w/ The 1975”Blahblahblahscience.com (Interview). Interviewed by B3SCI. Retrieved 7 August 2013.
  4. ^ Trendell, Andrew (4 December 2016). “The 1975’s Matty Healy opens up on a song he wrote about his mother’s post-natal depression”NME. Retrieved 9 March 2017.
  5. Jump up to:a b Brinnand, Emily (3 December 2012). “New Band Up North”The Guardian. Retrieved 23 December 2012.
  6. ^ Rhodes, Oliver (19 September 2013). “Wilmslow High School old boys The 1975 top charts with debut album”Macclesfield Express. Retrieved 10 April 2018.
  7. Jump up to:a b Caulfield, Keith (6 March 2016). “The 1975 Earns First No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart”Billboard. Retrieved 25 August 2019.
  8. Jump up to:a b “A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships by The 1975”Metacritic. Retrieved 22 November 2018.
  9. ^ “The 1975 Expose Their ‘Frail State Of Mind’ in Antsy New Single”Billboard. 24 October 2019. Retrieved 6 July 2020.
  10. ^ “The Foo Fighters, Twenty One Pilots and other stars announced for Sziget 2019”welovebudapest.com. Retrieved 4 September 2020.
  11. ^ “The 1975 – Notes on a Conditional Form Review”Pitchfork. Retrieved 7 July 2020.
  12. ^ “The 1975 Has More To Say”The New Yorker. 20 May 2020. Retrieved 7 July 2020.
  13. ^ “The 1975 Goes Post-Punk in Chaotic Music Video for ‘People'”. Retrieved 7 July 2020.
  14. ^ “Give Yourself A Try by The 1975 Review”Pitchfork. 5 June 2018. Retrieved 7 July 2020.
  15.  Murphy, Sam (29 April 2018). “The 1975 Tease Return With Cryptic Posters In The UK”Music Feeds. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
  16. ^ Graves, Shalin (6 May 2018). “THE 1975 ARE USING DÉTOURNEMENT TO HIJACK BILLBOARD ADS IN THE UK”Coup de Main. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  17. ^ Cummings-Grady, Mackenzie (2 May 2018). “The 1975 Is Counting Down to Something on Their Website”Billboard. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  18. ^ Ackroyd, Stephen (2 May 2018). “The 1975 are at it again, with a hidden conversation on mortality”Dork. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  19. ^ “The 1975 have ‘done a thing'”DIY. 29 April 2018. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
  20. ^ Shutler, Ali (29 April 2018). “The 1975 have shared a new update, titled ‘A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships'”Dork. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
  21. ^ Rettig, James (31 May 2018). “The 1975 – ‘Give Yourself A Try””Stereogum. Retrieved 31 May 2018.

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