As expected, Paramore has released its first new song in five years, “This Is Why.” As it turns out, “This Is Why” will double as the title track from the band’s comeback album, which will be released on Feb. 10 by Atlantic Records. The 10-track project reunites Paramore with longtime collaborator Carlos de la Garza.
“This Is Why” begins with a jazzy, bass-driven verse, as Hayley Williams instructs, “If you have an opinion / maybe you should shove it / or maybe you could scream it / might be best to keep it to yourself.” The song’s chorus ratchets up the intensity, with jagged guitar lines reminiscent of early 2000s indie standard-bearers such as Franz Ferdinand and Interpol. Further interesting guitar textures can be heard during the bridge, as Williams sings of “floating like a cannonball.”
Says Williams, “‘This Is Why’ was the very last song we wrote for the album. To be honest, I was so tired of writing lyrics, but [guitarist] Taylor [York] convinced [drummer] Zac [Farro] and I both that we should work on this last idea. What came out of it was the title track for the whole album. It summarizes the plethora of ridiculous emotions, the rollercoaster of being alive in 2022, having survived even just the last three or four years. You’d think after a global pandemic of fucking biblical proportions and the impending doom of a dying planet, that humans would have found it deep within themselves to be kinder or more empathetic or something.”
The video for “This Is Why” was directed by Turnstile’s Brendan Yates and finds Williams sitting calmly on a rock in a pond, dancing at a mountain overlook and, at its conclusion, sitting alone in a room while smearing lipstick all over her face. “It was so rad working with Brendan,” Williams says. “I’ve known the Turnstile guys for a little while and was so psyched to have our worlds collide in this way. There’s a cool kinship between the way our bands do things. Hopefully we will get to play shows with them at some point.”
This Is Why is Paramore’s first album since 2017’s After Laughter. The band’s fall tour begins Oct. 2 in Bakersfield, Calif., and wraps Nov. 19 at the Corona Capital festival in Mexico City. It also includes appearances at the Austin City Limits and When We Were Young festivals.