In the mists of a political hurricane, I think it important to note how pop culture, especially music, is becoming more relevant as a form of protest or simply a form of political awareness. One particular album that I think is more politically aware in our current time is Bastille’s newest release, Wild World, which dropped Sept 9.

Bastille is a band very near and dear to my heart, but all musical inclinations aside, I want to get right into the nitty gritty of the actual content. Now, I could go on for pages about how Bastille is using new musical techniques to modify their already stylized sound to create a new fresh sounding album, but I really want to talk about the meaning here. It’s always hard to say for sure that “this is what the artist means” in these lyrics or with this phrase, and at times I might be reaching a little bit, but Wild World is in my opinion an accurate representation of the political landscape especially in the US.

The name itself, Wild World, gives us a little inclination on the content of the album. As far as political landscapes go, we are definitely in a “wild world.” One track in particular that can be attributed to the rocky terrain of the this American political landslide is the second song on the album, “The Currents.” Let’s take a closer look at that name: “The Currents.” This song is all about the “currents” being created by the actions of someone or something. As Dan Smith, the lead singer for Bastille, reveals, there are newly created currents that are that are metaphorically dragging him down below the waves. Looking past the metaphorical, Smith comes right out and says it: “When anybody preaches disunity, tries to pit one of us against each other…you know that person seeks to rob us of our freedom and destroy our very lives.” This lyrical phrase allows for an unmistakable political standpoint. Smith furthers this point with the lyrics “We’re living in the currents you create…We’re sinking in the pool of your mistakes.” Smith has even personally advocated that the inspiration for this track, “The Currents,” was the rise of politicians such as Nigel Farage and Donald Trump, men who have risen in the political ranks all the while preaching discrimination and driving a wedge into society.

With other tracks like “Power,” “Blame,” and “Two Evils,” the album Wild World is definitely acting as a parallel for the current US political landscape whether that is the purpose of this album or not. However, even regardless of the thematic content, Wild World is a great listen worth your time. It’s exciting to see a band like Bastille moving forward with their new album, and wading out into the waters of newer sound and content.

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