Photo via rollingstone.com.

5/5 stars

In March of 2020, One Republic released “Better Days” as a single from the band’s fifth studio album. The band reminds us, with this song that things will get better a message now more meaningful than ever. 

During the isolating time of the COVID-19 pandemic, the lyrics in “Better Days” attempt to relate to the incredible range of emotions people have been feeling. Speaking to the unpredictability of the world, “I’m just trying not to go insane,” begins the song by letting the audience know they are not alone in feeling emotionally turbulent. However, the remaining lines cast a hopeful tone by putting meaning to the song’s title, “Oh, I know that there will be better days.” The band reminds us that at some point, the pandemic will come to a halt. 

The music video for “Better Days” is truly inspiring, shining light on how people from all over the globe are dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. As an idea by the band to build a community through shared experiences, they asked for fans to send in videos of their everyday lives. The band was able to find people sharing acts of kindness, showing how we can stay virtually connected with friends and family members, how communities, small towns and cities alike have changed and how people have stayed safe in quarantine at home. 

Not only does the video show fan footage, but the video also includes brief segments from news outlets around the world. These are incorporated into the video as they provide even more of a sense of urgency and concern relating to COVID-19, to the music video. Similarly to the song, the music video attempts to show togetherness and optimism during this time.

The lyrical thoughtfulness, upbeat musical tune and communal optimism associated with “Better Days” earn the song a five out of five star review.