The new album by The 1975 has blown many critics away.
Matty, the lead singer and the main song writer, has written some self-reflective tracks. These surround drugs, mental health and sex. This will allow many fans to relate to him but also to get help in those areas of their own lives. All the songs on the album are good, but where Matty excels when he comments on society and the track that sums everything up perfectly at the moment is ‘I’d love it if we made it‘.
Upon listening to this track for the first time I thought it was about Matty and his girlfriend. However, when I listened more closely and watched a YouTube video of the lead singer explaining the lyrics I understood that it was actually a track about society. The lyrics that specifically stood out for me were, ‘suffocate the black men, stop with misdemeanours and we’ll make our business out of them’ and, ‘I moved on her like a b***h, excited to be indicted’.
The first lyrics speak in reference to the Black Lives Matter movement in America. Eric Garner infamously said, ‘I can’t breathe’ after a police officer held him to the ground and later he died. Matty explains how this lyric says that if we stop killing them we can make more money off of them through the prison system. This doesn’t only speak for American society; stop and searches in the UK, although less violent, are predominantly aimed towards black people. Matty and the rest of the band are putting a spotlight on racism within the law enforcement system but also speaking about the prison system and how this has its own corruption problems.
The second set of lyrics comment on Donald Trump’s misogynistic remarks. I know the US President is a much talked subject at the moment and we should be focusing on other world leaders, such as Brazil’s newly elected president who is openly sexist, homophobic and racist, but Trump is still relevant. His election stands as a gateway for racism and misogyny in the West and makes racial comments seem less shocking when we hear them spoken by others. What struck me most about the lyric was ‘excited to be indicted’. It does seem as though Trump wants to be legally reprimanded as he continually breaks the law. The fact that nothing has happened is a reflection of what society is becoming and The 1975’s focus on this is significant. Many bands now shy away from these topics and the ones that don’t are shunned by radio. But The 1975 are so famous now that radio stations cannot ignore them and put them off air; they make people pay attention.
This is just one example of a song on the album that perfectly sums up the toxic climate of modernity. Go and give it a listen, you will be able to relate to it in one way or the other.