Bad Blood (U.S. Version) – Bastille

Bastille-Bad-Blood-LPI’ve been a big fan of Bastille for a long time, and I can honestly say that no album that is coming out this entire summer excites me more than Bad Blood. Bastille is a band -which I feel completely confident saying – will soon blow up. Bad Blood is Bastille’s first full length album in the U.S, and it certainly doesn’t disappoint. Bastille is led by Dan Smith, the band’s singer and primary songwriter. The British-based band has a unique, larger-than-life sound that speaks for itself and reaches heights almost as tall as Dan’s hair.

POMPEII – This catchy track opens the album in an amazing way. A perfectly orchestrated track is the first single heavily promoted in the U.S, and rightfully so. Pompeii is a great statement song for the album, and if you like what you hear, you will most certainly like the rest of Bad Blood.

THINGS WE LOST IN THE FIRE – The band’s most recent promotion in the U.K. Once again, a statement song. All of Bastille’s songs seem larger than life, profound and grand. This song is no exception. The violins on this track are exceptional, which adds to Bastille’s signature sound. If you feel curious, go ahead and check out the recently released music video for this song. There is a debate among fans currently as to what the music video “means”.

BAD BLOOD – The title track once again has a larger than life sound, and like every other song on this album is ridiculously catchy. With a simple hook and chorus, this song gives way to showcase Dan Smith’s range wonderfully.

OVERJOYED – The first slower song on Bad Blood. The majority of the song is defined by a piano, but they still manage to morph this song into a signature Bastille song; a chorus of haunting vocals, a semi-electronic touch, and a chorus of beautiful chords brought together by Dan’s voice to somehow wrangle these elements into something beautiful.

THESE STREETS – For some reason gives me an “Arabian Nights” vibe. One of the less dramatic songs on the album, simply in that it doesn’t stand out as much as the other songs when listening to it.

WEIGHT OF LIVING PART II – One of my personal favorites on the album, showcases Dan Smith’s amazing vocal range. It sounds like you have a whole choir of British men with an amazing vocal range singing in your ear. Oddly, Weight Of Living Part II appears on the album before Weight Of Living Part I. On the original U.K. version of Bad Blood Weight of Living part I and Get home were combined into one song. The fact that they decided to separate Get Home and Weight Of Living part I on its own is interesting, but they still decided to put Weight Of Living part I after part II chronologically. Whether a stylistic choice or a choice of simply wanting to keep the “U.S exclusive” songs together at the end of the album, I find it to be a bold and unique stylistic choice.

ICARUS – Once again gives me an “Arabian Nights” type vibe. For obvious reasons. Drum in this track is phenomenal, and it makes you want to dance. If you want to fully understand the lyrics and get the full effect of them look up the story of Icarus. Once you know this story, the song becomes even more beautiful.

OBLIVION – The first song I ever heard by Bastille, which in one listen convinced me to special order then entire CD from the U.K. The lyrics and vocals on this track can be best described by two words- beautifully haunting. This song is so heart-wrenching and gorgeous, but still manages to keep that larger than life sound. Dan’s voice asks “Are you going to age with grace? / Are you going to age without mistakes?” in such a sad way, without being whiny or making you feel he is trying too hard.

FLAWS – Adorable lyrics, very catch, easy to remember. “When all of your flaws/ and all of my flaws/ are laid out one by one…” one of the cuter love songs on this album. A song that is memorable after just one listen.

DANIEL IN THE DEN – Once again manages to be a primarily piano based song, but still somehow encompasses Bastille’s larger than life sound.

LAURA PALMER – As a huge Twin Peaks fan, the mere title of this song excited me. For those who don’t know, Twin Peaks is a terrible 90’s mystery drama on TV that ran for two seasons, makes zero sense, and spends hours upon hours keeping you guessing on who killed Laura Palmer. That being said, it was the inspiration for this song. The song is glorious, and for those who have managed to struggle through all 25.6 hours of Twin Peaks, there are many references you will understand. Even without knowing the meaning behind this song, it is still an exceptionally good song.

GET HOME – Probably one of the simplest songs on the album, punctuated mostly by a choir of Dan’s voice and piano. However, this song is still just as impactful as a Bastille song is expected to be.

THE SILENCE – a U.S only release. Very upbeat, fits perfectly in Bad Blood. Once again shows off Dan’s amazing vocal range. The chorus is very catchy, and after hearing it for the first time, I found myself singing the hook all day. The Silence is my favorite out of the three bonus songs on the U.S version of Bad Blood.

WEIGHT OF LIVING PART I –  Much more toned down than Weight of Living part II, this song doesn’t even appear to have any relation to its counterpart. However, only owning the U.K version of this song, it may be more impactful listening to it on its own rather than as a second part of Get Home. That being said, it is still a beautiful song, particularly lyrically.

LAUGHTER LINES- Gorgeous lyrics. At first, you wonder if you are being abducted by aliens, only to give way to a gorgeous song and string section. The lyrics are particularly striking, and slightly confusing – in a good way.

There are very few LP’s where I absolutely love every single song on the album, but Bad Blood has certainly fallen into this category. Bastille’s song “Pompeii” already reached number two on the charts in the U.K, before hardly a word of Bastille had been whispered in the U.S. So give it a listen, give yourself the ability to be hipster and say “I knew them before they were big” in the U.S at least.  And if you like what you hear? Do yourself the biggest favor of searching Other People’s Heartaches Part I and Part II. You’re welcome.

– Aly


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