Bastille's synth-fueled pop-rock anthems serve as the heavy, haunting—sometimes hedonistic—soundtrack to a world slipping and sliding into dystopia. Such ambitious sounds are fitting for a band named after the French anniversary of the Storming of the Bastille, a date that also happens to be the founder and frontman Dan Smith's birthday (July 14). Formed in 2010 after the Leeds-born singer/songwriter moved to London and connected with keyboardist Kyle Simmons, guitarist/bassist Will Farquarson, and drummer Chris Wood, the quartet quickly rose from indie darlings to one of the biggest bands on the planet. Their takeover began with "Pompeii"—from their 2013 debut album, Bad Blood— a boisterous blend of glossy synth-pop and arena rock where Smith lays out a challenge in the face of societal doom: "How am I gonna be an optimist about this?" he asks. Through gloomy lyrics—especially on 2016's Wild World and 2019's Doom Days, Bastille's "apocalyptic party album," Smith told Apple Music—the answer surfaces in their sound, an ever-expansive mix of moody electro-pop, euphoric house, falsetto-laced R&B, and glorious gospel. And their collaborations are just as thrilling and unpredictable: tracks with Marshmello (the slick dance-pop single, "Happier"); HAIM, Craig David, and Seeb (from their ongoing Other People's Heartache mixtape series); and Blur guitar hero Graham Coxon (2020's "WHAT YOU GONNA DO???," the band's scrappiest slice of rock yet). As long as it's Bastille, the music will always be "exciting and uplifting," said Smith, "but devastatingly sad at the same time."