British band Bastille premiered their first album, Bad Blood, which quickly shot to the top of the charts after its U.K.  release in March. The album debuted in the United States on Sept. 3, and though it didn’t receive quite as big the acclaim here, the first single “Pompeii” has received considerable buzz.

Lead vocalist and frontman Dan Smith described “Pompeii” as a moment of reflection and introspection that goes on forever. Said message was lost however, under the heavy use of synth beats and repetitive chorus. The tune certainly achieved “a moment that’ll go on forever,” but a bit too well. Although the first single “Pompeii” has received most of the attention, it is certainly not the best track on the album.

Tracks to note were “The Silence” and “Weight of Living, Pt. 1”, both displaying the impressive vocals of Smith with a more natural sounding percussive baseline to replace the heavy synthetic beats of previous tracks. Unfortunately though, as with the rest of the album, both songs are too repetitive to listen all the way through. They fail to stand out and make a lasting impression with the listener, instead blending seamlessly into the next with little distinction.

Though the album is composed of catchy beats and pleasing melodies, there is nothing that takes it to the next level beyond just easy-listening. The songs have a soothing repetitiveness that makes the perfect soundtrack to a TV show or background music for working. It is pleasant enough to listen to, but lacking the passion to draw a listener in and make him focus on nothing but the music. Overall the album lacks the spark to ignite the obsessive frenzy that takes a good song to the “I’ve-played-this-on-repeat-all-day-I-can’t-get-this-out –of-my-head” level.

The music video for “Pompeii” fails to enlighten the song any further, instead relying on a tired story of a lone man in an apocalyptic-type world. The story does not resonate with the song or the viewer, falling flat yet again.

While certainly not a bad album, Bad Blood’s real shortcoming is that it fails to leave a lasting impression on the listener, fading into the void of other alternative rock bands of the day with nothing to set it apart.

The 411

Album Title: Bad Blood

Release date: 9/3/2013

Cost: $7.99

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *