Live review: Bastille

Bastille perform in Leeds
Bastille perform in Leeds

Chart toppers Bastille played to a sold-out O2 Academy Leeds on Monday night.

The London four-piece, whose debut album Bad Blood stormed the UK album chart in March, returned to Yorkshire following their Leeds Festival set in August.



And the biggest news is the band’s new tunes - some of which had a brief airing to thousands of drenched revellers at Bramham Park in August - now fit confidently into the Bad Blood set.

This band amassed such a large following in 2012 and 2013 that, having to fill ever larger venues, the live show was in danger of simply not having enough songs with which to fill the space.

However, frontman Dan Smith has ensured fans have plenty to look forward to, with new songs such as Campus and The Draw building on the heavier sounds of Bad Blood which fans enjoy.

The introduction of guitar into one or two of these songs brings a tougher sound, suggesting any future Bastille songs may pack more of a punch.

On the introduction of one of these new songs, at least, it sounds like this band has a copy of the new Arctic Monkeys record in the tourbus.

Bastille are never going to replicate Sheffield’s finest, but, as an act, they are a cut above most of the others, as appealing to a television talent show-watching teen as to older wannabe indie kids playing the CD in the car on the way to work.

They offer a pleasing togetherness that happily suggests they will be around for a long time and touch of class that is missing from other similar acts - the Waitrose of pop.

Smith is well spoken, a crowd pleaser and his stage presence is growing.

The choruses of Bad Blood were written for performance. The powerful Laura Palmer, classic it’ll-grow-on-you track Things We Lost in the Fire and even the more subdued Daniel in the Den were met with huge cheers, and everybody in the room knew what was to come.

Flaws and Pompeii, the band’s biggest hits to date, were played out to adoration from the crowd. During the former, Smith wandered into the crowd, singing with the adoring fans.

These are decent, honest tunes, and the popular response to Bad Blood ensures the band have the confidence to take the music in a new direction.

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Bastille at Leeds Festival 2013