Bastille at First Avenue, 4/1/14

Categories: Last Night
Photo by Anna Gulbrandsen
with To Kill a King
First Avenue, Minneapolis
Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Bastille used to just conjure up images of a French uprising, but now it's an indie-pop rock band from London with a hit single called "Pompeii." Bastille showed Minneapolis on Tuesday night that they had more life beyond their radio play.

See also:
Slideshow: Bastille rock First Avenue

For those who missed the Imagine Dragons show at the Xcel mid-March, Bastille made up for that. If the Dragons are U2's mini-mes, then Bastille are the baby Imagine Dragons. Like the two bands, each of Bastille's songs were anthemic to epic porportions, building and pulling back to grow again to a big ending. The English band even had a drum right up front for lead singer Dan Smith to use to enforce the driving beat.

As the band opened with the pulsing "Bad Blood," the audience, giddy with anticipation from waiting all day, greeted them with screams. To be fair, the crowd was ready to cheer for anything the band did, be it Dan standing on the amps or him just waving his hands and leading them into dancing along. Outside of his pompadour of dark hair, Smith looks vaguely like Owl City's Adam Young, minus Young's awkward dancing.
Photos by Anna Gulbrandsen
For anyone who hasn't internalized Bastille's album, the pieces started to blend and sound alike. Good thing they had a few ballads to throw into the set. Approaching the keys, "Overjoyed" slowed down the set, yet had the ability to not drag it down.

Even to the most jaded critic, while their music is not groundbreaking, it admittedly is fun experiencing grandiose pieces like "Icarus" and "Things We Lost in the Fire" in a live setting. The former opened with sweeping piano and drums to bring the rest of the band to shape the energetic song.

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