Label: Dirty Hit/Polydor Records/Interscope Records
Released: May 22

Many have deemed Notes On a Conditional Form The 1975’s grand maximalist statement, but Matt Healy is no stranger to doing the most. A 20+ track, 80-minute hodgepodge of every genre the band has dabbled in before was inevitable. The excess only really works against them in comparison to their past work, though. Healy has a special gift for making saccharine earnestness soar, for making sonic interpolations and influences seem genuine instead of vulture-y, and for making even the band’s wildest experiments at least respectable in their effort. What a long album sacrifices in cohesion it makes up for with variety. Notes has small ballads with incisive writing and rich scene-setting like “The Birthday Party,” as well as requisite big pop tracks. But nothing about this group is formulaic. Healy’s penchant for experimentation is often a criticism when it should be heralded as a thrill—“If You’re Too Shy” is a romcom music supervisor’s wet dream and stealth Prince homage. “Me & You Together Song” is ‘90s Freddie Prinze, Jr. music, sitting right beside a singular alt-R&B fusion like “Tonight (I Wish I Was Your Boy).” The album may be a season finale of sorts to the bands “Music for Cars” era (IYKYK), but ending on “Guys,” a “me and the boys” meme writ large, feels like it’s heralding a long break. Hopefully they don’t sit the game out for too long, because even at this excess, I can’t wait to see what they try next. Healy once tweeted “Young Thug.” Imagine that? —Frazier Tharpe