Anatomy of a Hit: Bastille – Of the Night

I’ve set myself a challenge to analyse the highest new entry to the UK singles chart top 10 each week. This week it’s one of the many quirky covers out for Christmas…

#2 – Bastille – Of the Night

Of the Night is a great example of how a record label can give an old song a new life when they recognise that it hasn’t fulfilled its full potential. It was originally released as a free download as part of the Other People’s Heartache EP in February 2012, shortly after Bastille had signed to EMI and long before their breakthrough hit Pompeii. I was a big supporter of the band at the time and picked out Of The Night as my favourite from the EP, which featured several surprising covers, including versions of What Would You Do by City High and What is Love by Haddaway. Of The Night is one of a special group of chart hits which were available for free at first (alongside Tik Tok by Ke$ha and Royals by Lorde), proof that when giving away a song for free artists should choose a good one, not a worthless leftover, to achieve the desired viral effect.


Of The Night played a part in building Bastille’s strong fanbase, which grew gradually yet inevitably over a two-year period, but it never got its moment in the spotlight until now. It was featured in a TV advert for Dancing On Ice last Christmas, which could have propelled it into the charts a year earlier, but it wasn’t meant to be. Today, Bastille release a special edition of their no.1 album Bad Blood entitled All This Bad Blood, which features a few new songs, but its main purpose is to introduce the music from the early EPs to the new fans. Of The Night has been released to promote All This Bad Blood, but it’s also a clevely-timed move, which has capitalised on the festive season and matched the chart position of their biggest hit, Pompeii.

Come back next Monday to read my thoughts on the highest new entry in the top 10. Will it be Calvin Harris, Breach, Olly Murs, One Direction or something else entirely? Tweet me your predictions now!

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