INTERVIEW: The 1975’s Matt Healy Talks “Humbling” Success, Supporting Muse and Upcoming Album

Just a few hours before The 1975 raised the roof of the Old Ship Paganini Ballroom at The Great Escape Festival, I sat down with lead singer Matt Healy to talk about the success his band are enjoying – before they’ve even released an album – and what fans can expect from their debut when it’s finally released on September 9th.

First of all, congratulations on having had such a big year. Has it seemed to pass really fast for you?

Yeah, we’ve just been in a van for the most of the time. We were on tour with Two Door Cinema Club at the beginning of the year, and we’ve just been on tour the whole time so we’ve not really been at home to appreciate everything yet but it’s good; it’s amazing.

Have you not noticed things such as the increased amount of radio play?

Oh yeah. Well that, we hear about a lot but we’re not really there to experience it. We’ve not been in the country very much and when we have been, we’ve been so busy but it’s been remarkable really how big it’s gotten so quickly. We’re just taking it one step at a time really and trying to keep our heads up.

The 1975 have been around for quite some time in other forms with different names but do you still consider yourself to be a ‘new band’?

Oh yeah, very much so. To ourselves, we’re very much a group of four friends who go back a long time but as a band, yeah, I’d say we’re very new.

It’s quite amazing how you’ve enjoyed so much radio play considering you haven’t even released your debut album yet; is that something that’s surprised you?

Oh yeah, very much. We’ve been very humbled by it. I mean, we’ve announced Brixton academy. We’re playing at Brixton academy and we’ve not even released our final EP, or album. People seem to be really embracing it so we’re kind of just taking it all in our stride. It’s very, very exciting.

Has it always been your intention to release four EPs because the first three seemed to fit as a trilogy?

Yeah, I never said the whole trilogy thing but people have always labelled it as that. I think they wanted it to be a trilogy of EPs, but it wasn’t. It’s just that every time we were going to put out a lead track, like a single, we wanted to surround it with a record that really said something about who we were at that one individual time. All those records were written in a matter of weeks then they were recorded.

It’s quite interesting how you’ve also been able to tour America without having released an album.

Oh yeah, I know. We did a sold-out tour of the east coast. I just think that it’s certain songs that people have really connected with like ‘Sex’ and ‘Chocolate’ which people have really got behind. It’s the power of the internet, isn’t it? It’s an amazing thing, it’s a remarkable thing. You wouldn’t have even been able to do it a few years ago; it’s amazing.

When you do release your album, will it be the same mix of instant songs like ‘Chocolate’ with more experimental music [as featured on the EPs]?

No. It’ll be all instant songs. It’s a big album. When we wrote ‘Chocolate’, we were like “We need 13 of them” and that’s what we’ve tried to do.

Will any of your already known songs be featuring on the album, or is it all new?

Chocolate’, ‘Sex’ and ‘The City’ will be but the rest of them won’t be [on the album]. They will stay on the EPs as our EP-tracks.

One really big show that you’ve got coming up is with Muse at the Emirates stadium. Is that nerve-wracking?

Yeah, very much so! I think the most people we’ve ever played to is about 2,000 and this is 60,000 so it’s going to be amazing. We don’t know what to expect. It’s the Emirates stadium – you don’t get much bigger than that. It’s going to be amazing, we’re so happy to be part of the whole event.

Will you be playing lots of festivals over the summer?

Oh yeah, we’re playing pretty much every UK festival over the summer – more festivals than I’ve even heard of. So it’s going to be amazing, and we’re touring all the way over the album [out September 9th] so you can’t miss us live this year; we’re playing everywhere.

Will YOU be catching The 1975 live this year?