He's had to walk back comments construed as racist. Walk back a stunt to protest LGBTQ discrimination in Malaysia. Walk back his romantic wooing of Taylor Swift. Even walk back a warning that his band will be going on hiatus after its current tour.

One thing Matty Healy hasn't retreated on, though, is trying to make said group, the 1975, seem like one of the biggest and most grandiose bands of the moment.

Thursday's concert at Target Center by Healy's breezy, bouncy, mopey but melodic British dance-pop band did not exactly match his grandeur size-wise: There weren't many more fans on hand than the 8,000 who showed up for the 1975's sold-out show at the Armory last December, despite the major profile boost Healy got from briefly dating Swift earlier this year.

However, the 1¾-hour performance did still feel big in terms of audience enthusiasm, clever staging ideas and feel-good moments.

The best parts had little to do with the singer and his complicated persona, too, and more to do with the expanded touring lineup of the band making his songs feel broader and funkier on stage than on record.

Essentially a larger-scale version of that Armory show — part of the same tour behind the 2022 album "Being Funny in a Foreign Language" — Thursday's concert started out as something of a theatrical one-man play being shown on TV.

Playing directly to the video screen cameras at the start of the concert, Healy acted like he just came home and wandered the living room of the elaborate prop house constructed onstage. He stared at a vintage TV set, pulled from a cigarette, pulled from a highball cocktail glass and even did pull-ups during the opening montage with songs like "Looking for Somebody (to Love)" and "Happiness."

Only 34, the singer seemed to be playing the role of a disenchanted rock star, like a more fashionably dressed version of Bob Geldof in the "Pink Floyd — The Wall" movie. He finally broke from character five songs into the show to seemingly address the controversies he's stirred up — but even then it turned out he was maybe still in character.

"As an artist, I want to make an environment where not everything I do is taken literally," he said. "Sometimes as an artist playing pretend is the only way to figure out who we are."

Just when it seemed like Healy was making a sensible plea, though, he weirdly turned into a shlocky advertising pitchman with an infomercial-like pitch for discounted therapy sessions.

He made a similar pivot in the second half of the show, sounding like he was apologizing for wrongdoings — "Just because I'm getting older, it's not an excuse to stop learning," he said — but then undermining the message with another comical ad for self-improvement.

The concert's halves were split by a B-stage acoustic segment in which Healy played "Be My Mistake" solo. That first half largely focused on songs from the latest album. "A Change of Heart" sounded a tad melodramatic and mushy, but "Oh Caroline" sparked an ultra-sweet singalong.

For the second half, the band delivered more of an oldies set and a straight-ahead concert. Not surprisingly, it was the better half. Healy kept sipping from a wine bottle and continued to wander a bit incoherently, but he seemed to be mostly intoxicated with the upscaled sounds of his band.

The expanded lineup impressively raised up the cheery love song "The Sound" and the giddily received hits "Somebody Else" and "Love It If We Made It." (The biggest hit, "Chocolate," was actually skipped.) Saxophonist John Waugh added stylish, guitar-like fills and solos á la the Psychedelic Furs' Mars Williams in "About You" and several other more shadowy tunes.

Nearly all the songs were laced with an orchestra-like layering of synthesizers, at times even evoking classic Peter Gabriel or Tears for Fears tunes. Not that there was any kind of Gabriel-like deeper lyrical meaning to songs such as "Sex." It really is just about sex, as were several others in one way or another.

Healy did not address hints of the band going on hiatus once its tour wraps in a few weeks, but the 1975's future seemed assured Thursday. The singer seemed to be raising more questions than answers. And Lord knows he likes to talk. But he also seems to still be in love with his band and its evolving, strengthened live sound.