Responsible for numerous pop music earworm diagnoses worldwide since 2010, British pop-rock big guns Bastille have delivered a new album in 2016 titled Wild World. The chart seeking lengths that the band are previously known for have worked against them in this case, with Wild World sounding like a sequel filled with bonus tracks to their debut record – subsequently failing to bring anything of eye-widening worth and appreciated pop value.
For the most part, the record is a thick look into the band’s thirsty pop presence. This is not particularly always a recipe for success, however, with the first track sounding generally bleak – failing to summon any surprise and satisfaction. Instead, the sound is left grasping at an off-kilter effort specialising in limited excitement. Redemption swiftly approaches in following songs such as Warmth and Power, though, as they hover above a deepness in the tone and instrumentation government. Two Evils sets itself aside as one of the most distinguished cuts on the record, aiding a wondrous and subdued exhilaration within the song’s overall structure. A melancholic guitar echoes underneath Smith’s peachy vocal exercises. This feeling continues into the next track, Set Them Off! It originates beneath heavy brass components and liberating percussive distributions. These are sole exemptions in the grander scheme of things, though. Smith’s creative pop intentions and song assembling, sit far too close to a proven formula that incorporates much of Bastille’s sound. The album clings to a repetitive focus that fails to disseminate from the similar-sounding songs that it comprises. Re-used synth bits and keyboard echoes with matching drum figures, eliminate any possible potential in the album’s bigger picture. This familiarity gets a little strenuous half way into the record’s listen, with songs like Lethargy doing more to sound overly forced and spent. This feeling continues to taper off as the record unwinds into boring and lacklustre environments – shutting out any intention of establishing a musical trust that could have been.
Ordinarily, the resulted situation is that of wasted attempt. Stretching a total of fourteen tracks in under fifty minutes, Bastille has displeased in creating a pop album of possibility or any physical authenticity. What is left is a myriad of contemporary radio fillers with the same piano bursts, same drum snippets and same sounding chord progressions. Perhaps the burden of being the sole songwriter has contributed to Smith’s generic pop-rock fumblings. Regurgitating cheap sounds and monotonous lyrical lengths is anything but a resounding formula for success. The outcome merely trickles down into a small pool of dampened emotion reflecting unenthused direction and false sense of musical character.