Happy bank holiday! Anybody got any big plans? Under different circumstances we’d be planning for a big weekend of live music at All Points East, Dot To Dot or Gala Festival, but just because the main event has been cancelled doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a drink in the sunshine in your garden, local park or, y’know, just sort of sat by the window.
Anyway, if you need a playlist, where better to start than The 1975’s back catalogue of ravey, instrumental tracks? Hidden among genre-hopping pop tunes on each of the band’s past albums you’ll find a handful of bangers that would absolutely go off if somebody dropped them mid-DJ set. Here’s what you need to be listening to this bank holiday weekend.
‘How To Draw / Petrichor’ (2018)
While the ‘How To Draw’ part of this ‘A Brief Inquiry Into Online Relationships’ track takes a softly-softly approach – all twinkling synths and ringing music box peels that gradually grow into a Bon Iver-tinted vocoded vocals – it soon transitions into ‘Petrichor’, and the party kicks in. Imagine what a collaboration between The 1975 and Burial would sound like – a raucous trip filled with glitchy electronics, skittering beats and fuzzy production. It’s like that moment of euphoria at a festival when your favourite band have just finished headlining and you head off to the dance tent, pals in tow, for a night of revelry.
Play it when: You’ve finished pre-drinks and are on your way to the party – and by party we mean on the way to your bedroom after your housemates get fed up with your impromptu rave
Like this? Try this: Burial, ‘Untrue’
‘I like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it’ (2016)
The title track from the band’s second album is a chilled-out epic. Standing at just over six minutes, it fuses minimalistic melodies with hypnotic, bubbling beats and ethereal production. The results are gorgeous.
Best played when: You need a break from the body-shaking techno you’ve been dancing to for several hours – or your neighbours issue a noise complaint.
Like this? Try this: Jon Hopkins, ‘Singularity’
Filled with chattering birds and expansive production, this beauty comes from way back when on the the band’s third EP ‘Music for Cars’. The recording of this five-track release took place after Matty lost his grandmother to head and neck squamous-cell carcinoma – the song’s name is an abbreviation of this – which had a big impact on the music he was making. ‘HNSCC’ was fairly different to what the band had done previously, with Matty explaining that the song was impacted by his feelings that “the fact that something you have no control over can really mess with the dynamics of people’s lives”.
Best played when: You leave the party and walk home as the sun starts to rise.
Like this? Try this: Port Blue, ‘The Albatross Ep’
‘Shiny Collarbone’ (2020)
This cut from The 1975’s latest album started off with a sample from Jamaican dancehall musician Cutty Ranks. When the band went to him to clear their use of it, he helped them out by re-recording his vocals for use in the track – what a nice guy! Fusing Ranks honeyed vocals with crunchy house beats and sun-drenched production, it’s one of those songs that will have you yearning for festival season 2021.
Best played when: At the beginning of your big night in, to get things started as people gradually trickle into your group call.
Like this? Try this: Caribou – ‘Suddenly’
‘Having No Head’ (2020)
A slow-burner from ‘Notes On A Conditional Form’, this one goes from a chilled-out ambient soundscape and into a jittery micro-house smasher.
Best played when: You need to coax people onto the dancefloor
Like this? Try this: Kiasmos – ‘Kiasmos’
Frail State Of Mind (2019)
Look, it has words and isn’t technically instrumental – we know! But it also absolutely slaps and is well worth an inclusion in your bank holiday bash playlist. Fusing jittery UK garage beats with spiralling melodies and earnest vocals, the band turn global anxiety into a glitchy trip hop beaut.
Play it when: The claustrophobia of being inside gets too much and you go for a walk around the block.
Like this? Try this: DJ Koze, ‘Amygdala’
‘An Encounter’ (2013)
Short but sweet – this lovely cut from the band’s first album is an early indicator of the sounds they would explore later in their career. Mixing their know-how for killer melodies with soaring production à la Sigur Rós, it’s a charming nugget of pulsating synths.
Play it when: you need to lift the mood after some sad bangers
Like this? Try this: George FitzGerald – ‘All That Must Be’