The 1975: Still, Yet Again, At Their Very Best
The 1975 have returned once again to embark on a tour of their very best. After releasing their latest record “Being Funny in a Foreign Language”, the band have toured non-stop around the entire world, with frontman Matty Healy seemingly playing towards controversy the entire time. Following on from the themes of sincerity and endings embedded within their last album, it is a welcome occurrence to see that the band have entered a playful tour-cycle dedicated to reminiscence and self-satire.
Theatrically, a black curtain dawns the large stage within the Rogers Arena, and as a beaming projection of the 1975 logo appears upon the teasing overcast, everybody is restless. Thirty minutes feels like five, and all of a sudden, the curtain drops and reveals a prop house encompassing the entire stage. The band emerge to their meta-titular track, The 1975, with the large screens at either side of the stage panning to each member of the band with a subtitle of their name as though introducing an 80’s sitcom. Then, eliciting a horde of screams and cheers, frontman Matt Healy walks out onto the stage with a cigarette in hand and nothing on but a dressing gown, he has come out to fulfil his leading role in the charismatic show that is the 1975.
Running through a chronology of their latest album, with the energetic, 80s power-pop Looking for Somebody to Love to the muddy grooves of Happiness, the first half of their setlist is also peppered with old classics. The crowd swoons as the band work through romanticised favourites Fallingforyou and Robbers, and the arena swirls with feelings of nostalgia and ecstasy. Taking a brief interlude to divide their set, two acoustic renditions of Be My Mistake and Jesus Christs 2005 God Bless America elicit a serene and gentle atmosphere before the band bursts back onto the stage to dive into their magnum opus, If You’re Too Shy (Let Me Know). This, we have been told, begins the second part of the show known as their “very best” – and they do not disappoint.
Skating through a discography of five LP’s, each song performed is an undeniable hit. From the pumping nostalgia of Heart Out, to the politically charged yet danceable Love It If We Made It, to the sad melancholy of Somebody Else, each track exerts a consistent level of excitement and longing. Each fans’ Spotify wrapped is beginning to come to life. As Healy cheekily declares at the beginning of the lucidly dream-pop track It's Not Living (If It’s Not With You), the 1975 “just keep getting better”. As the band moves to a hidden B-stage amidst the centre of the crowd, decorated with a grassy floor, they finish the set on the Marilyn-Manson inspired punk track People from their fourth LP. Ending the show with an exertion of raw punk energy and exhaustion to ensure that all excitement and vigour is moshed out, the band provides an ending that feels whole, by covering all of the genre-bending grounds which are so integral to their vast and vigorous catalogue.
We may all rest easy now, completely satiated.
Introductory Song Suggestions: If You’re Too Shy (Let Me Know), Chocolate, Oh Caroline, A Change of Heart, Love It If We Made It.