The self-titled debut by Manchester four-piece, The 1975, has been one of the most anticipated albums of 2013 on the alternative rock scene for good reason.
Their first four EPs (‘Sex’, ‘Facedown’, ‘Music For Cars’ and ‘IV’) have gained them increasing notoriety,and by hitting big festivals through the year, they’re sure to have built up a strong following.
The album opens with a short instrumental intro that leads into ‘The City’, an instantly catchy song with “I should be a number one single” written all over it. ‘M.O.N.E.Y.’ follows, a track previously unreleased on their EPs, yet it doesn’t disappoint – full of catchy hooks that they’ve become so well acquainted with and a beat behind it that incorporates the modern dance era melded with indie rock.
‘Chocolate’ and ‘Sex’ (a sticky yet satisfying situation) are the next two tracks, already fan favourites, and for good reason – these two tracks have become a phenomenon for the band and have taken audiences by storm.
With the album groove changing into what feels like an 80’s police drama, ‘Talk!’ defines a change in the albums beat. But the lyrics are same old for the band, catchy mantras repeated over and over which give the album a severely repetitive feel. They may have truly mastered their sound, but that same old sound gets pretty boring pretty quick; despite their dance influences showing through.
The 80’s feel is continued onto ‘Heart Attack’, which opens up with (what I am 90% sure to be) Lionel Richie’s ‘Dancing On The Ceiling’ (and if it isn’t, then Lionel should be suing). This track marks the half way point on the album and so far it has literally sounded like… well, two tracks. The album is split between their usual sound, all pre track seven, before then moving onto the 80’s groove. Whilst enjoyable, the album itself feels like it could have held so much more from what it was heralded to be.
‘Girls’ continues with more of the same and despite being a nice sound and a good song, by track eleven, you’re already bored. The album itself is sixteen tracks, which feels like about five too many. Whilst for the final four tracks they revert to their original style and dispose of the ‘Lionel’ feel, each song still holds an identical quality… almost to the point that you could play a song, name twelve titles and still be unable to distinguish which song it was that was playing.
Each song is good. But that’s just it; for a band whom “are bringing back guitar music to a generation” it just feels like a wasted debut. They’ve tried to compile so much into one record, it feels like that it should have been split into two; they could have done something similar to Green Day’s ‘Uno!’ ‘Dos!’ Tré!’ sequence of albums which would have created two very good records. But instead, this amalgamation just stinks of disappointment for a band who were supposed to be producing the best thing since some four blokes from Sheffield hit the scene. 6/10
Words by Adam Paver.