Bastille storm back with Wild World, a diverse and evocative second LP.
Bastille’s music draws heavily from film, as frontman Dan Smith detailed in a feature for The Line of Best Fit.
Wild World emanates this cinematic influence at every corner. The album’s first track, “Good Grief”, begins by sampling the 1985 sci-fi flick Weird Science. Wild World continues to sample ’70s and ’80s movies throughout its runtime, and, like a film soundtrack, each track is unique and affective.
Bastille don’t fit nicely into one genre. Their catchy music blends elements of pop, rock, hip-hop and R&B. From the electronica-influenced “Warmth” and rhythmic guitars of “Blame” to the simple acoustic “Two Evils”, they blur the lines between soul-searching and audacity.
The tracks of Wild World are held together by Bastille’s most powerful instrument: Smith’s voice. Although synths, guitars and drums create an indie pop feel, the album is held together by the soaring choruses that Smith belts out. The best examples are two of the more introspective songs, “Oil on Water” and the aforementioned “Two Evils.” The latter is the pinnacle on an album jam-packed with good songs. Its simple guitar melody allows Smith to be the focus point.
Without the unifying power of Smith’s vocals, Wild World would appear disorganized and haphazard. Due to its bouncing between power pop anthems and outstandingly simple songs, the record keeps the listener intrigued. As a result, it’s hard to stop listening. As Smith himself said, Wild World is “an evolving narrative where you’re not sure what turn it will take next.”
9 out of 10.