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"The Birthday Party" The 1975

by Marios Argitis - Photo Editor
Wed, Feb 26th 2020 02:00 pm

The long road to The 1975’s fourth upcoming studio album, “Notes On A Conditional Form” continues. “The Birthday Party,” is the fifth single released from The 1975. The song was released on Wednesday, Feb. 19, following the band’s pattern of monthly single releases in anticipation of the album. The Sims soundtrack sounding song touches on the issues of addiction and societies struggle with issue-avoidance, while offering a very chill and relaxing country like sound. 

The song is like The 1975’s take on a deconstructed internet-country song. Lead singer Matty Healy sings in a mellow tone, met with flickering instrumentals and atmospheric background sounds. The track feels like a non-objective journey through sobriety and relationships, all bundled up in the party scene. Healy singing about staying clean and crossing paths with strangers partying all involved in dead interactions, really makes the song feel like a directionless 20-something’s narrative. 

The song is accompanied by a music video, a truly digital piece that combined true emotion with a multi layered narrative. It features a digitized avatar, like Healy’s adventure to Mindshower, a digital detox center. There he encounters characters from meme subcultures in hopes to give him a piece of mind. He also finds a piece of his direct self by encountering his band mates, which together perform the song in a mellowed down  four-man concert. It’s a very imaginative piece that mixes addictive parts of modern society while at the same time tackling self-addiction in other areas such as emotions and feelings. 

Healy starts the song by saying he is “clean” With connection to Healy, this is a reference to his escape from his past drug abuse. In the context of the song, he could be insisting that he is clean from digital toxins such as memes and other consumptive parts of the internet. Toward the end of the song, Healy sings about relying on his friends to stay clean. This is both a good and sad thing because he shares his lack of self-control to stop without external help. It could also have some “digital” significance, maybe implying that his friends distract him from the need of digital entertainment. The song has many layers that allow you to analyze it further with every listen. 

The 1975’s new track, “The Birthday Party,” explores temptation and has a lot more ground compared to the other released singles from its upcoming album. From their previous more confrontational releases such as “People” and “Frail State of Mind,” this new track suggests that the album will sound like a lot of things. Specifically, “The Birthday Party” gives the idea the album will sound more sober and rawer than other recent songs from The 1975. This new loving and clever track makes me more excited for what the album will offer. I cannot wait to see what will come next from an already musically complicated band. 

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Taken by Vincent Croce:
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