Five thoughts: Bastille (April 19, House of Blues)

Bastille’s Dan Smith, Saturday at House of Blues.
Photo: Bill Hughes
Jason Harris

1. In case you’re not familiar with the Brit-rock quartet, think of it this way: If the band moves one degree in either direction, it could end up as the next Coldplay or the next OneRepublic. Catchy smash hit “Pompeii” is a great example of what Bastille does best—keep the pace quick, layer vocals and instruments and stick to a smart pop formula.

2. “Of the Night” is one of the more interesting “covers” I’ve seen, a mashup of dance hits “Rhythm of the Night” and “Rhythm Is a Dancer.” If only they found room to add some of Gloria Estefan’s “Rhythm Is Gonna Get You,” it would be the ultimate rhythm song.

3. Some cuts feel less produced live, which is a nice changeup. The bass line from “Poet” sounds like it could have come directly from The Cure when played without all the effects.

4. Lead singer Dan Smith has a wickedly British sense of humor. When a woman in the front row threw a large bra at him, he looked at the cups, then back at the thrower and told her, “These are a little too big for you.”

5. Smith announced “These Streets” as his favorite song off debut album Bad Blood but “Flaws,” with its Postal Service-ish computerized back beats and ready-made chorus, was the real showpiece. It’s been released three times as a single and will likely catch big this time.

  • As the singer approaches 50, his vocals remain a high point, his mix of throaty growls and raspy screams sounding near-perfect.

  • He’s done acid in Las Vegas, which he calls “a bad life decision.”

  • "There’s no way we could cover everything we have. It would have to be a three-and-a-half-hour show."

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