London four-piece Bastille present their hugely anticipated second album, Wild World, which follows the band's global four million selling, multi-platinum debut, Bad Blood. Wild World retains the vivid, rich, filmic song-writing of its predecessor but pushes the band's distinctive sound in exciting new directions. Lyrically, too, it's a leap forward, "If our first album was about growing up and the anxieties surrounding it," frontman Dan Smithexplains, "Our second is about trying to make sense of the world around you, both as you see it and as it's presented to you through the media. It's also about asking questions of the world and of the people in it. We wanted the album to be a bit disorientating - at times extroverted and introverted, light and dark."
Written by Smith and co-produced with Bastille's fifth member Mark Crew, Wild World was recorded in the same tiny, South London windowless basement studio where the band recorded its predecessor. It's a collection of nineteen songs that sees Bastille at their boldest and most daring. Anthemic yet thought-provoking tracks include the fiery, string-laden, "The Currents," a poignant and timely song that was written about, "Specific public figures on both sides of the Atlantic, and how it can be hard to believe they can think certain thoughts, let alone say them out loud or get on a podium and broadcast them."
As well as the bombastic "Send Them Off!" which boasts the attitude of a classic hip hop song set against the lyrical narrative and insecurities that are part of Bastille's own DNA, whilst referencing both The Exorcist and Othello. The track exemplifies Dan's belief in shuffle culture and the end of rigid genre boundaries. There's also the pensive, stripped back Depeche Mode-esque sound bed for the band's beautiful "Two Evils" which was recorded in one take; As well as the irresistible and rousing "Snakes" and the guitar heavy "Blame," which Dan describes as, "Our first foray into big guitar riffs, in a fictional standoff between two gangsters."
But at the heart of it all, there's a sense of escapism that runs through Wild World and a fascination with the human condition and the relationships we all forge, fight over and sometimes forget.