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Being Funny in a Foreign Language by The 1975

Updated: Dec 10, 2022

“There was something about you that now I can't remember. It's the same damn thing that made my heart surrender.” These lyrics from “About You” are the clearest depiction of The 1975’s 5th album, “Being Funny in a Foreign Language.” The 1975 are experts in making you feel nostalgia for something you may not have even felt before. As a new listener to The 1975, I learned quickly that I have been missing out on something special.

“The 1975” is the introduction to the release, not to be confused with the title track of the same name off their debut album. It starts off slow, easing you into the experience. It feels very theatrical, like the beginning of a broadway musical. The production and composition absolutely swallow me and take me somewhere completely else. The vocals invoke a sense of nostalgia as Matty Healy’s voice feels familiar and beautiful.

“Happiness” evokes the same sense of second-hand nostalgia that I get when I watch movies like Take Me Home Tonight. It is starting to look like the mix of timelessness and nostalgia is where The 1975 shines and I need that in my life. The vocal melodies on this song remind me of The Weeknd and that is a really interesting combination that I was not expecting. The story sounds like learning how to love through someone new. I think we have all had experiences where someone unexpected just changes the way we view life as a whole.

“Looking for Somebody (To Love)” is a song that you can dance to at a party or a concert. Thematically, it seems to be about the struggles and tribulations that come with trying to find your missing piece. With each song so far they completely mix up the melodies and instrumentals and I love it. The best thing an artist can do to prevent a slow, boring album is to push themselves not only lyrically, but instrumentally as well. Healy surprised me and showed off an amazing falsetto as well. Overall, I am loving where this rollercoaster is taking me.

“Part of the Band” definitely shows off some folk influences. It is a bit softer than the rest and feels like it tells a story through its composition. The lyrics focus on self-accountability which I appreciate in any artist. The tempo of the song is much more dynamic than in the others which separates this as a standout track. It’s a very soothing song that wouldn’t feel out of place around a campfire.

“Oh Caroline” is a dark/modern pop rock love ballad. Yet even with this different vibe it still brings that feeling of nostalgia and timelessness. It makes you reminisce on past relationships and lovers in a very warm way. “Oh Caroline” has the “It” factor that makes it worthy of topping the charts and being a hit at live shows or even at parties or clubs.

“I’m in Love with You” is another love song. However, the lyrics and vocals aren’t what stood out. The production and instrumentation just completely blew me away on this track. I have noticed a theme with this album’s production where the vocals are as much of an instrument in the madness more so than as a standout. It is something I notice in a lot of the heavy music I listen to so it is cool to see this in a pop environment.

“All I Need to Hear” slows down the tempo and gives me Ed Sheeran vibes. I think the biggest compliment I can give is The 1975 are maestros at invoking the feeling of being hopelessly infatuated or in love.

“Wintering” is about spending holidays with the family. Coming home and learning about all that you have missed. It is a really warm and sweet song. However, there is an angst to it that almost feels like they resent coming home and the holiday memories. Either way I love Christmas and this is going to be on my stocking-stuffing playlist eternally.

“Human Too” is also a bit slowed down. It is a bit more on the experimental side. The song keeps the flow of the album going steadily but almost feels like filler or an interlude to a much more grand track.

“About You” is actually a sequel to an older song called “Robbers”. If you listen to the two songs back-to-back you will cry. I can concur that notion. This song brings back feelings of a past lover, maybe even your first love. The feelings that came from looking into their eyes or the moments you shared. It is a really special feeling. Listen to the bridge with Guest Vocalist Cary Holt and Matty Healy’s duet and try not to break down. I dare you.

“When We are Together” is a conclusion to a grand spectacle. This song gives folk vibes but within the melodies I can also hear some country influence. Nice twist. Overall it is a nice cool down to make the fact that there are not more songs less painful.

This was my first experience listening to The 1975. If their other releases are anywhere as good as this album, they have a new No. 1 fan. I am mainly a metalcore guy but I adore this album, if you like good music, you will enjoy this. The 1975 are masters at making the listener feel. Feel nostalgia, feel warmth, feel their first love all over again. That is really special. “Being Funny in a Foreign Language” is a special album.

You can find all things The 1975 here.

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