Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 24
  2. Negative: 2 out of 24
Buy On
  1. 100
    The 1975 have somehow put out an album made for introspection and headphone listening and dancing around your living room, something deep and sprawling and occasionally silly to dig deep into over many listens, during which your favourite track will shift on a daily basis. Something that requires time and attention – something just right for now.
  2. 91
    A delightfully overstuffed collection that features some of their best and most immediately pleasing work to date.
  3. 83
    Notes seethes with paranoia, charges of revolution, and, above all, honesty, providing a semblance of comfort during a, drum roll please, “unprecedented time” that truly affects everyone.
  4. May 22, 2020
    If this is their worst album, and you might believe that it is, then they very well may be the best band in the world. If quality is more important that quantity, then they must simply be the worst band in the world. It’s all about perspective, and at 80 minutes and 22 songs, you’d expect some measure of clarity to emerge from Notes On A Conditional Form. What you do get is a Taylor Swift album in the midst of five great songs, five decent tracks and 12 give-or-takes. And that, in today’s artistic climate, is tantamount to excellence.
  5. May 22, 2020
    There are at least two too many instrumentals, and songs that stand apart on their own start to bleed together near then end. But the ambition and execution can't be denied. This is the 1975 operating at the peak of their powers.
  6. May 22, 2020
    It can feel indulgent. Yes, they have expressed some of these thoughts more succinctly in the past; and yes, the tracklist could be condensed so that you don’t have to clear your schedule to get through it. But when everything clicks, their work has never sounded so patient, so personal.
  7. May 22, 2020
    In many ways, it's a lot to take in at once, but that's not necessarily a bad thing because it shows a level of unquenchable ambition, creativity, and outspoken curiosity that's rarely felt in popular music today.
  8. May 21, 2020
    For an album as expansive and big-swinging as “Notes,” its hit rate is surprisingly high. The 1975 is still walking that tightrope of self-indulgence, but more often than not it has learned how to retain its balance.
  9. Q Magazine
    May 18, 2020
    For all its characteristic lyricism and stylistic restlessness, to say there is never a dull moment on Notes on a Conditional Form would be a slight overstatment. [Jul 2020, p.103]
  10. May 18, 2020
    ‘Notes On A Conditional Form’ is lyrically playful and musically a step away from being confused for a compilation album of the best tracks this group has ever released. But that confusion is warranted. This is The 1975’s quarantine Megazord.
  11. May 22, 2020
    By putting us off-guard so many times earlier in the album, maybe Healy feels he’s earned the right to be mawkish, in the clinch. And maybe he’s also earned our willingness to put the whole 22-track affair on replay, give or take a mere half-dozen skips.
  12. May 21, 2020
    It is a deceptively intimate work; diary entries hidden within slickly produced pop songs, which shows Britain’s most divisive band still hasn’t lost its ability to surprise.
  13. May 18, 2020
    Had they filtered the cacophony of ideas a little more, ‘Notes…’ could have matched ‘A Brief Inquiry…’ as a modern-day classic; as it stands, its legacy looks set to be slightly more conditional.
  14. May 22, 2020
    Notes on a Conditional Form is The 1975 as we know them – just good enough to not be bad.
  15. May 22, 2020
    When they're playing to their strengths, the 1975 provide a robust platform for Healey’s witty, romantic, confused yet always committed interrogation of the essential artifice of his role as reluctant rock star with a conscience, shouting into a void already filled with the echoes of other voices. Like many double albums, there is a fine single album here fighting to get out. If only.
  16. May 22, 2020
    The tracks that follow are, simply put, eclectic. At times, almost frustratingly so.
  17. May 21, 2020
    This album takes a different, more meandering approach compared to Brief Inquiry, and that may be its greatest weakness: Notes on a Conditional Form is simply too long. ... Still, where Notes works, the 1975 prove themselves to be surprisingly efficient craftsmen, even as they sound ridiculous.
  18. May 21, 2020
    It makes Notes on a Conditional Form a curious thing, an album whose flaws are inherent in what it sets out to do: music for the no-filter generation, with all the good and bad that entails.
  19. Mojo
    May 19, 2020
    Earnestness often rules. ... They're better at slushy, Radio 1 epics and louder, brasher tracks. [Jul 2020, p.78]
  20. May 20, 2020
    Where A Brief Inquiry… excelled due to its exceptional pop songwriting and well-calculated sonic departures, Notes… is far too ambitious and self-aware (“Will I live and die in a band?”) for its own good.
  21. Uncut
    May 22, 2020
    It's unwieldy, cheesy, overlong, confusing and, just occasionally, inspired. [Jul 2020, p.25]
  22. May 22, 2020
    Notes On A Conditional Form feels less like a 1975 album than it does a hodgepodge collection of songs by a band trying on various sonic identities to see what fits. If anything, to understand and appreciate the record, don’t approach it as an album-length statement from one band, but as a personalized, diverse playlist curated by a favorite human tastemaker.
  23. 30
    Notes has no such common context, and ends up feeling flat, directionless and inessential, where its forebears felt vital, worthy of devoting a life to. For a band with proven dexterity in deftly capturing the nuances and quick changes of contemporary conversation, it is disheartening to witness them with nearly nothing of note to say.
  24. 20
    A smug farrago in which each track grates against the next like rusted gears. In between the nonsense – meaningless orchestral interludes and indistinguishable dance tracks inspired by Jon Hopkins and Bonobo – there are flashes of promise, mostly in the instrumentation. Even this is lost to inconsistent mixing.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 106 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 74 out of 106
  2. Negative: 20 out of 106
  1. May 22, 2020
    There are some good tracks on this album. However, the album lacks purpose and feels very untidy. Whilst a diverse range of genres is mostThere are some good tracks on this album. However, the album lacks purpose and feels very untidy. Whilst a diverse range of genres is most appreciated, this album signifies that The 1975 no longer possesses the unique style they once had. A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships should have been the framework to build off for this album. Full Review »
  2. May 22, 2020
    After being a huge fan of a couple of their singles over their years i expected them to return to their original vibes with this one but whatAfter being a huge fan of a couple of their singles over their years i expected them to return to their original vibes with this one but what I found was an unbalanced, disoriented mess of an album with very little purpose. There was only maybe two tracks that stood out which is as bad as most of the 80s one hit wonder albums. Full Review »
  3. May 22, 2020
    I tried to like it but every other song is an autotuned mess. Matt's completely lost his mind (probably all the drugs and weed he
    I tried to like it but every other song is an autotuned mess. Matt's completely lost his mind (probably all the drugs and weed he smokes). One of the worst releases in the past 10 years. I'll put it down there with all the other gangster rap.
    Full Review »