Wednesday, November 6th, 2019

The 1975 – Frail State of Mind

Pull quote for the press release, courtesy of Edward…


Alfred Soto: I enjoy several The 1975 singles without understanding the hysteria they inspire in many male colleagues, straight and gay. The vocals and synth patches suggest “frail state” — anything else would be pinning them down to a mood, and, boy, they don’t want that.

Oliver Maier: If “People” was the alarm clock going off, then “Frail State of Mind” is The 1975 hitting snooze and returning to the saccharine guff that they can (and do, in this metaphor) make in their sleep. Every melody sounds like one I’ve heard Matty Healy sing dozens of times before, and the garage trappings feel as superficial as any of the countless stylistic redirects they’ve pulled in recent years.

Thomas Inskeep: I’m not sure what the 1975 are doing here, but this loose sketch of a late-’90s garage record could’ve used some more time in the oven.

Michael Hong: Swirls together in a collection of references to their previous work — the melody lifted from “TOOTIMETOOTIMETOOTIME,” a lyrical reference to “I Always Want to Die (Sometimes),” the anxiety prevalent all over A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships — but never actually reaches their dizzying heights. Why wouldn’t I just listen to “I Like America & America Likes Me”?

Ian Mathers: I mean, credit to these guys for somehow always sounding like The 1975 no matter how many different genres/styles/technologies/songwriting techniques/whatever they dip their toes into — in this case, it’s a nicely layered electronic shuffle that faintly calls to mind the Primitive Radio Gods’ one hit. They also have a history of growing on me, and so while “Frail State of Mind” was promising but not spectacular on my first half-dozen listens, I’m not surprised I’m already detecting the first hints of what’s going to keep drawing me back. It’s those glowing clusters of piano notes kept suspended, humming, or the tricky emotional tones, or both.

Wayne Weizhen Zhang: Reminds me of peak Passion Pit in the way it is simultaneously a delicate, vulnerable gossamer of sound examining mental health spirals, and also something you can dance to. The money line is in the chorus: “I’m sorry, but I, I always get this way sometimes” is basically an rally cry for anyone who’s ever apologized about their mental health to someone else. (Never apologize for what you’re going through. Please, don’t go through it alone.) 

Kayla Beardslee: This is nice, but it’s very easy to forget that you’re listening to it.

Edward Okulicz: A song that comes across as something like one of those greatest hits megamix things people felt the need to put on their singles years ago, put together in a way that I can’t process. In other words, this is their “Burning the Ground.” I’d say it was ballsy to put this out as a single, but Matty Healy inspires Donald Trump-level loyalty these days, and this is far more pleasant than being shot in the middle of Fifth Avenue.

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2 Responses to “The 1975 – Frail State of Mind”

  1. Haha clearly in my feelings this week— and I love this song but also love Kayla’s blurb more

  2. “Frail State of Mind” is the type of song that feels restless, gradually unraveling into a jumbled collage of disparate sampling, those last few staccatoed synth chords like the auditory equivalent of a TV turning off and blipping out, but the result is merely Kllo electronica on acid (or some other drug).

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