Bastille is back on top of Billboard‘s Alternative Songs chart thanks to “Happier,” a collaboration with hitmaking DJ/producer Marshmello. The track is the British band’s second #1 hit on the tally, following 2013’s “Pompeii,” and it’s the first #1 in the chart’s 30-year history to feature two co-billed lead acts.
Speaking to ABC Radio, frontman Dan Smith says that seeing the success of “Happier” has been “crazy.”
“It’s been just such a fun process,” Smith says of working with Marshmello. “It’s been a bit different for us — we’ve never really done anything like this before.”
Those new experience vibes also extends to the “Happier” video, which tells the emotionally devastating story of a girl and her dog.
“Our videos tend to be quite kind of weird and dark and Lynchian and odd,” Smith says. “I think…both the song and the video have provoked quite a different response than what we’re used to.”
While “Happier” brought Bastille down new avenues, it certainly follows in the band’s tradition of combining upbeat music with sad lyrics, which Smith tends to do no matter what he’s writing.
“I’m quite pessimistic and bit of a realist and pretty quite British about things,” he says. “I’m not one to sort of say everything’s amazing.”
As much as that happy-sad style worked for songs like “Pompeii” and “Good Grief,” Smith feels it also fit with what Marshmello does.
“It sort of builds to this big Marshmello drop that happens, and you’re like, ‘I don’t know, should I be crying, or dancing?’” he says.
Meanwhile, Smith and company are working on the third Bastille album, which Smith confirms will be called Doom Days. The follow-up to 2016’s Wild World is due out next year.
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