Over the years, Manchester has born and bred an awful lot of well respected and adored acts, most notably being Oasis, The Stone Roses, Simply Red, and The Smiths. Having just dropped their second album across the world, which debuted in the #1 spot in the UK, US, Australia, New Zealand and Canada, and currently amidst a UK tour with multiple consecutive dates in a handful of cities, it seems like the path to superstardom is already set for The 1975, and what better place to see it in motion than their home city.
Standing as the tour’s one and only support act, young Londoner The Japanese House , or Amber Bain if you’d prefer, already has affiliations with the evening’s headliners, with Matthew Healy and George Daniel co-producing some of her work. Her Imogen Heap minimalistic electronic style is certainly ethereal, but the mix is a little muddled and too clustered for any of her ideas to truly land. With a bit more of a concise delivery, however, this could be something more.
The room goes dark, before slowly each member of The 1975  begin taking to the stage. The twangy guitar of ‘Love Me’ kicks things off, and the stage set-up illuminates as the crowd begin to scream and bounce for their local heroes. Healy is without his guitar for the most part of the band’s set, choosing instead to have a touring musician fill in that spot whilst Healy prances about the stage whilst crooning to the crowd.
Understandably, more than half of the site is composed of cuts from their new album, ‘I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It’, with particular highlights coming from the insatiably catchy ‘She’s American’ and the delightfully depressing ‘Somebody Else’. The older numbers still retain their charm and credibility though; ‘Robbers’ gets the crowd swaying to and fro, and ‘Heart Out’ sounds much better now than it does on record.
It’s the encore, however, that shines through everything else and truly highlights the kind of band that The 1975 have evolved into. Returning after chorus of chants demanding “We want sex!” from the Manchester crowd, the four-piece bring just that. A gospel choir accompanies the stage for ‘If I Believe You’, and brings an element of umph to following numbers ‘Chocolate’ and ‘The Sound’ before the final crunching chords of ‘Sex’ close the curtains, and leave another chapter in what will undoubtedly be a story that sets The 1975 as a flagship band for the capital of the North.
Written by Zach Redrup (@zachredrup)