Yeh, I am a Cities loyalist through and through don't get me wrong...but musically, this album provides more depth in some areas. Lyrically, Cities definitely still has the edge, but melody wise Vital just sneaks in front.
To be honest this Cities Vs. every other album they do is getting boring. Cities definitely had a vibe about it, and that's why it connects with so many of us, but Vital displays a massive amount of growth and I for one see it as a suitable follow up and a step forward. I think one of the reasons Cities is adored so much is because of the two albums that came after it. Cities set people up, they signed to a major label, everyone was expecting their next album to be massive...instead we got New Surrender, which on its own merit is a good album...but it just wasn't the follow up to Cities everyone was expecting, so people kind of went back to Cities until they produced something better. Well of course, Dark didn't deliver for the most part, so again, Cities remained the album of choice.
I think Vital is what New Surrender should have been, and maybe now Cities has a suitable follow up this comparison can die down a little.