“No Bystanders” by Travis Scott (ft. Juice WRLD and Sheck Wes)
“No Bystanders” is a song which is meant to promote the act of moshing. Or stated differently, it’s a hardcore-party song in which Travis Scott and his collaborators set out to mess the club up, as in get the entire party and everyone therein jumping. Indeed the title, “No Bystanders”, points to the idea that Travis does not want anyone idling ‘standing by’ when he is performing on stage. Rather he wants them all to ‘rage’, as in wildly express themselves (i.e. dance) in tune with the music. Such is the nature of the chorus and overall feel of the track.
However, the verses themselves really have nothing to do with partying. Rather it is another depiction of Travis Scott’s personal lifestyle with a special emphasis on drugs, women and gangsterism. And throughout, Scott more or less comes off as someone who is always on the move and in the process sleeping with different women, regardless of whether they already have boyfriends or not.
Juice WRLD and Sheck Wes step in
Meanwhile Juice WRLD and Sheck Wes are tasked with holding down the choruses. The main chorus, as stated above, is centered on the idea of enthusiastic partying. This particular section is recited by Wes and was apparently inspired by (i.e. derived from) a couple of tracks from yesteryear. Meanwhile in the pre-chorus, WRLD also focuses on partying but more along the lines of the negative effects a modus operandi of constantly doing so is having on him. And whereas he never mentions drugs outright, it is commonly interpreted that the “sins” and such he refers to is actually an allusion to getting stoned.
But despite Juice WRLD’s solemn tone, this is indeed a party song. Or stated differently whereas the main artist, Travis Scott, does express some reservations concerning his revelous lifestyle, ultimately there is no actual indication that he is prepared to forsake such.
Facts about “No Bystanders”
“No Bystanders” marks Travis Scott’s first collaboration with both Sheck Wes and Juice WRLD.
This song was written by the three artists along with the track’s producers, WondaGurl, Mike Dean, TM88 and Gezin (of 808 Mafia).
Additionally there are quite a few other writers of “No Bystanders”. This is partially due to it interpolating “Tear da Club Up” (1995) by Three 6 Mafia. Thus the three writers of that song – DJ Paul, Lord Infamous and Juicy J – are also credited on this track. In fact DJ Paul successfully sued Travis Scott for basing the chorus of “No Bystanders” on “Tear da Club Up”.
And just to note, the other song which “No Bystanders” interpolates is Waka Flocka Flame’s “**** the Club Up” (2010). However, none of the writers of that track are credited on “No Bystanders”.
But the other writers of “No Bystanders” are recognized as Crunchy Black, Gangsta Boo and Koopsta Knicca (all of Three 6 Mafia) in addition to CyHi the Prince, Larry David, Sjón and Björk. The latter two artists are credited due to this track sampling another entitled “Jóga”, which Icelandic songstress Björk released back in 1997.
Epic Records, Cactus Jack Records, Grand Hustle Records and Sony Music Entertainment released “No Bystanders” on 3 August 2019 as part of Travis Scott’s highly-successful “Astroworld” album.
Travis Scott performed this song at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards, which were held on 10 February 2019.