REVIEW: 'everything changes in the end' by vistas
“There are a million things you wanna say,” sings vocalist Prentice Robertson in 15 Years, and he’s right, there are a million things I wanna say about this album.
Hailing from Edinburgh, Vistas are a three-piece headed for greatness. Everything Changes in the End is their debut album following a string of popular singles and EPs. Although times are strange and there have been a fair share of artists choosing not to put out new music in the middle of it all, I have yet to see a band as excited as Vistas to release their debut. It’s refreshing and wholly needed in a world where everything feels upside down, but the sun is still shining.
Everything Changes in the End sounds like the perfect escape and the promise of an endless summer. It’s bright and bouncy, uplifting and go-getting. This isn’t an album you sit with. This is an album you jump around your kitchen screaming along too, dancing like a maniac because Vistas practically demand it from you. Even as I’m typing, I can’t be still. Though it makes me long for the days where I can be in a muddy field, singing along with a bunch of muddy strangers, I am more than grateful to have it to brighten up the days that are heavy and grey.
Each song flows into the other seamlessly. From the intro to the ending, not a song is out of place. With a full-throttle album like this, there is the danger that it could become one massive, energetic indie blob, but somehow Vistas subvert falling into that trap. It’s like the soundtrack to an early-2000s teenage rom-com in the best way.
They open with titular track, "Everything Changes in the End," and it all about erupts. The 50 second Intro beforehand rumbles in the pit of your stomach and explodes into the anthem that dictates the message of the album. Looking at the lyrics, I can picture an emotional song if it was set to some sad music, but that’s not what Vistas ever have been. They ooze positivity and it truly shows in this song.
"Teenage Blues" is another where it could be sad, but they propel you to think about the situation differently by reassuring that they “will always be there for you, when you’ve got the teenage blues.” Though everything does change in the end, there is safety within music, and it can be found when listening to this song.
"15 Years" is my favourite, if I had to pick one. The lyrics catch up with the music and deliver a life-affirming anthem that stands out amid the other songs on Everything Changes in the End. Vistas say it was written at the very end of their recording process and they were ‘looking for a song that tied together the sentiment of the album… It’s about remembering that we cut our teeth in small, basement venues playing to just a few people which slowly grew.’ It’s essentially a love letter to the people that got them to where they are now, and the love pours out.
They sing about love in a different sense, specifically in "Sucker," which they’ve said is about ‘recognising all the senseless things people do in order to maintain the love they feel.’ The song itself transports you to those moments through hooky guitar lines and soaring vocals. The moments when you feel a new crush blossoming and it’s all a bit cringe, but you revel in it anyway.
"Summer," unsurprisingly, is the perfect summer anthem. It was written back in 2016, only played live a few times before it fell off their setlist, and now they’ve found the best time to release it. Though it almost laments summers when you could hang out with your friends in a world pre-social distance, it’s still a feel-good anthem to play when the sun seeps through the windows.
"Tigerblood" is one of their most listened to songs with the single version racking up over 6 million streams on Spotify alone so far. Guitarist Dylan Rush takes centre stage in this one and gets you moving. It’s signature Vistas and a good place to start if you’ve not listened to them before.
"The Love You Give" speaks to the hard work the band have undertaken to get them to the point that they’re at now. It’s about finding that one thing you’re passionate about and giving it your all, and, eventually, it will pay off.
For me, "Shout" is about friendship. It opens with the lyrics “Hope you remember that I’m, At the end of your phone line,” and goes on to explain that no matter what, someone will always be there to help lift you up. It’s an important message during these times, that “If you ever feel alone you know that you can always, Shout if you want me.”
The theme of love comes up again in "You and Me," moving the narrative on and recounting how when you’re in a relationship, it feels like as long as you take on the world together, everything will be fine. It’s punchy and fun.
"Sentimental" is the second half to "The Love You Give," detailing their time on tour and the contrast it has to being at home. Again, it’s a catchy song that will get everyone moving when they have the chance to play it live.
"Retrospect" can be found as the most streamed song on Spotify and when you hear it, you’ll understand why. What I take away from this song, each time I listen, is trying to get the claps right and never being able to do it. Apart from that, it accelerates from the get-go and makes you stop to pay attention to every second. The lyrics, telling the tale of a couple going through issues, are relatable and have the potential to be sad, but the electro-pop that surrounds them don’t allow you dwell on the situation. It is, in short, a banger.
"November" is their take on that one slow, melancholy song that’s a staple on every album ever released. Though, it’s still more upbeat and dance-y than most songs out there. It’s a hopeful song about sharing the future with someone you love to the backdrop of building bass lines, thanks to bassist Jamie Law, and a rousing chorus. It’s a fitting way to cap off the album as they sing “I’ve got higher hopes than I ever did before.”
Everything Changes in the End is all you could want from Vistas debut. You will come out the other side feeling happier and more hopeful than you did before you pressed play. It can be streamed anywhere you listen to music, and Vistas can be found on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and their website.