Back in June, three interlocking triangles were the first taste of WWCOMMS from Bastille and what would ultimately be the driving force behind their sophomore offering Wild World. An abbreviation of “Wild World Communications,” WWCOMMS has been described as “an all-seeing media outlet” that is inspired by the concept of Big Brother, Terry Gilliam’s Brazil, and George Orwell’s 1984. Its logo is reminiscent of the valknut symbol, often used in burials and political representation. Valknut is also a type of computer software, which lends to the overall glitchy aesthetic and coding typeface that has become WWCOMMS’ signature.
Throughout the promotional roll out for Wild World, WWCOMMS has been at the center. From its messages via bots to fans, it has acted as an overlord, albeit a seemingly welcoming one, as it guided us through the chaos we were about to embark on. So when it came time to finally unleash Wild World onto the masses, there was no other fitting option than to bring WWCOMMS to life through three pop up shops in Los Angeles, New York City, and London. WWCOMMS HQ was different depending on the city but the heart (or motherboard) of it remained. With a dystopian feel (whether that’s present or future is entirely up to you to decide), the pop up shops were like an interactive visual representation of Wild World. The walls lined with song lyrics and artwork from the music videos “Good Grief” and “Fake It,” with workers wearing a literal uniform with the familiar symbol slapped on the back.
The band themselves were present at each pop up shop as well, behind glass or in a cage with the words “I WANT TO BE FREE” (from the track “Send Them Off!”) appropriately written for all to see. This particular part of the pop up shop is a possible commentary on not only celebrity culture but how we as a society view the world in general: through a distorted piece of glass.
The juxtaposition of Wild World and WWCOMMS is a fascinating one. One is constantly questioning the other’s existence and yet still needs it to thrive. It’s hard to say if WWCOMMS will destroy us or save us but we’ll continue to tune in — as if we had a choice.