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More than a number - the musical legacy of the 1975’s Matty Healy and George Daniel

We might all be getting excited for the arrival of something new from the 1975, but the influence of the band’s creative dynamic duo reaches far further than one band alone.
Published: 12:51 pm, May 25, 2018
More than a number - the musical legacy of the 1975’s Matty Healy and George Daniel
There are many reasons why The 1975 have become one of the biggest and most important bands of our time. A lot of them are built on ambition, character and perseverance as well as a super smart ability to create their own unique world. Perhaps even more fundamentally though, the basis of everything The 1975 are about is founded on the musical relationship between Matty Healy and George Daniel.

The glorious pop alchemy that the two childhood friends have created runs throughout The 1975’s music. As the band have become more successful, they’ve begun to sprinkle some of that stardust over fellow like-minded artists to create a scene and spirit of creation that’s both classic in approach but founded in a relentlessly future-minded way of thinking. For George and Matty, success with The 1975 isn’t enough. They want to open up their world to the next generation and find some future stars.

The hit factory of their record label Dirty Hit delivers banger after banger, some of which are built on the aesthetic that George and Matty have established. It’s a sensibility that you can do whatever you want; that musical boundaries and genres are meaningless. They take on a magpie approach and mould these influences into something new.

No Rome is the latest to be touched by the hand of George and Matty. Rome Gomez is an incredible artist in his own right, but having been brought into The 1975’s inner circle, he’s stepped up to another level with the shimmering future pop of new single ‘Do It Again’. At the same time, it appears he’s also had a transformative effect on the creation of The 1975’s forthcoming grand statement ‘Music For Cars’. Speaking to Zane Lowe on Beats One radio Matty revealed, “Rome kind of became a muse of mine.” He continued: “I was working on his stuff and then his ideas, you know, were on parallel with everything that me and George were doing so I just wanted that energy in the studio.”

‘Music For Cars’ - in whatever form it takes - promises to be the full realisation of George and Matty’s potential as producers. In truth, though, it’s always been George and Matty driving things, with outside influences helping the duo realise their ambitions. Speaking to Sound on Sound, producer Mike Crossey explained some of the processes for their 2013 debut. “George did a lot of programming on the album,” he revealed, “with help from Matty. They had worked these things out in their Logic studio in Wilmslow, and we’d recreate many of the sounds, trying to make them bigger and better.”

For a producer like Crossey, it was clear that these guys had something special: “It was great to work with a band who were that ambitious, and weren’t afraid to tread that delicate line between credibility and commerciality, between mainstream appeal and cool.”

George and Matty have inspired a new wave of artists who share a passion for art, creativity and sonic exploration. Whether it’s the pop rush of Pale Waves and their series of impeccable turbobangers, the delicate, atmospheric introspection of Amber Bain and The Japanese House or lesser-known talents like the London band Colouring who George helped out on a single in 2017, the pair are constantly creating, looking to build a new way of looking at pop that is lasting and meaningful.

You hear a lot about legendary musical duo’s - Lennon and McCartney, Morrissey and Marr, Chas and Dave (erm - Ed) but as we move onto perhaps the defining era of the 1975’s legacy, George and Matty may just trump the lot of them.

The 1975 - Antichrist (2012)

One of the very first productions undertaken by George, ‘Antichrist’ is the beginning of what we know as The 1975 today. The sonic hallmarks established here begin a formula that has gradually expanded over time. Sparse and atmospheric with a faded glittering glamour. This is where it (almost) all began.

The Japanese House - Still (2015)

If anyone can match the musical relationship George has with Matty, then it’s Amber Bain, aka The Japanese House. A musical kindred spirit, it almost seemed fated she would work so closely with The 1975 pair. However, it’s George who has been a constant throughout her progression. ‘Still’ features the kind of tender vocal manipulation that is a touchstone of his work and gently flutters into the most tender crescendo.

Pale Waves - Television Romance (2017)

This is the one. George and Matty’s pop smarts go supernova and align with the glorious hook-filled majesty of Pale Waves - perhaps the peak of their non-1975 excursions. Full of whooshes, rushes and production tricks it fully shows the magic the duo can help create.

No Rome - Do It Again (2018)

The pair’s brand new protege seems a perfect fit. Having been taken under their wing, Rome Gomez is ready to fly. Hypnotic and dreamy, it’s the kind of blissed out production that George has perfected. Listen to that repeated synth pattern and drift off into a beautiful dreamspace. There’s an edge though. Pop that’s smart and diverting, it’s the sound of 2018.

Want more Matty & George magic? Load up our Spotify playlist here and delve deeper into their world.

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