Bastille's Dan Smith opens up about body dysmorphia

13 January 2022, 14:04 | Updated: 13 January 2022, 14:51

Dan Smith of Bastille
Dan Smith of Bastille has talked about body dysmorphia . Picture: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images for The National Lottery

By Jenny Mensah

The Bastille frontman has talked about performing on stage and grappling with how he sees himself in photos and videos.

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Dan Smith has revealed he suffers from body dysmorphia.

The Bastille frontman sat for an interview with The Guardian, where he opened up about suffering from the mental health issue, in which one becomes pre-occupied with one or more perceived flaws in their personal appearance.

Speaking to the outlet, the Pompeii singer revealed how catching a virus in Thailand before his third year at University caused his weight to change dramatically and caused him to start eating more healthily. However, he still saw himself as bigger in his own mind.

He recalled: "When I lost loads of weight and suddenly just looked like a different person, it’s quite a … I think for anyone that’s gone through quite a big, radical physical transformation it can be a fair thing to get your head around.”

“It’s a bizarre line of work in which you are constantly confronted by your own image,” he added. “It’s not fun – and it doesn’t feel particularly healthy.

“I think a lot of people suffer from different versions of body dysmorphia,” he says. “We all have the version of ourselves that we see in our own heads and often that’s so different from the version of who we are through other people’s eyes.”

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Smith also revealed that the condition effects how he feels about being on stage and playing to large crowds.

“For someone who has body image issues, it’s complicated getting up on stage every night in front of lots of people, when your instinct is to hide away,” Smith says. “Sometimes it’s not a problem, sometimes it is.”

The 35-year-old also opened up about how his nerves play out on stage and revealed how it sometimes gets so bad he becomes completely tone deaf.

“It’s really up in the air as to whether or not I’ll have a good show or not because I get really nervous,” he said.

“I have this really unhelpful thing where I go pitch deaf on stage – so I can hear noise, but can’t place anything – and then I become really self-conscious about not singing in tune, because you can’t hear what’s going on.

"I remember playing at Alexandra Palace – which should have been such an amazing moment – and two songs in I just lost it and went completely pitch deaf and the whole gig for me was then this mad, terrifying rollercoaster of just trying to get through it. I hear myself saying this and it’s just a real shame."

If you have been affected by the themes in this story, please reach out to the below:

MIND - Body Dysmorphic Disorder

Mindinfoline: 0300 123 3393

The Body Dysmorphic Foundation

National services for OCD and BDD

National OCD/BDD Service