It’s hard to believe that it’s been more than five years since seminal local pop punk turned alt rock outfit Paramore released their triumphant, genre-bending fifth album, After Laughter. That record cycle, the first since a lineup change which would see founding drummer Zac Farro (who also fronts local group HalfNoise) return to the band, included several years of shows around the globe, kicking off with a intimate and unforgettable hometown comeback show at Exit/In, and also concluding in Nashville with a really special, communal day fest featuring a whole array of local artists called Art + Friends in late 2018 (ahead of which we had the pleasure of chatting with singer Hayley Williams).
Things have been a little quiet on the Paramore front for the past few years since, with Williams branching out with a pair of solo records (and a planned tour, which was halted by Covid) with production from guitarist Taylor York, and recently hosting an emo retrospective radio series, and Farro continuing to make music as HalfNoise (and, of course, a couple years of the whole world being generally halted due to the pandemic). Earlier this year, however, it was announced that Paramore were officially working on their sixth album, having decamped to Los Angeles and indicating a return to some of their earlier, heavier influences.
We’ve been waiting on an update ever since, and, earlier this week, after an extended tease and the announcement of some intimate tour dates around the nation (no Nashville as of yet, but it seems like an inevitable addition), the band made their welcome return with a new single and video called “This Is Why,” out ahead of their new album of the same name, which is slated to arrive Feb. 10!
Recorded in LA with Carlos de la Garza (who worked on the last two Paramore records as well as Williams’ and Farro’s other projects), This Is Why marks the longest gap between releases in the group’s history, and, like their last LP, arrives with a sense of uninhabited reinvention from a band who’ve learned to make art for their own catharsis and enjoyment. Title and opening track “This Is Why” sounds at once familiar while unique from anything Paramore have released before, retaining a bit of the rhythmic and post-punk tinged experimentation of After Laughter while also channeling the art-rock edge of Williams’ Petals for Armor. Thematically, it also continues both those LPs’ trends of tackling serious, confessional subject matter (in this case, the uncertainty of simply weathering the past couple of years) with a slick, catchy veneer.
On the track’s inception, Williams explains:
“’This Is Why’ was the very last song we wrote for the album. To be honest, I was so tired of writing lyrics but Taylor convinced Zac 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 3 or 4 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.”
Directed by Brendan Yates of buzzy hardcore group Turnstile and shot in Malibu, the accompanying music video is a perfect, vibe-y visual accompaniment, awash with retro, film-grain aesthetics and performance shots, which really sets the tone for this next era of Paramore. Watch the video below, and keep an eye out for additional show announcements and further singles!
October 2, 2022 – Bakersfield, CA – Mechanics Bank Theater #
October 4, 2022 – Magna, UT – The Great SaltAir #
October 6, 2022 – Omaha, NE – Orpheum Theater Omaha #
October 8, 2022 – Oklahoma City, OK – The Criterion #
October 9, 2022 – Austin, TX – Austin City Limits
October 11, 2022 – Chesterfield, MO – The Factory #
October 14, 2022 – Bonner Springs, KS – Azura Amphitheater &
October 16, 2022 – Austin, TX – Austin City Limits
October 20, 2022 – Los Angeles, CA – The Wiltern ~
October 22, 2022 – Las Vegas, NV – When We Were Young Festival
October 23, 2022 – Las Vegas, NV – When We Were Young Festival
October 27, 2022 – Los Angeles, CA – The Belasco %
October 29, 2022 – Las Vegas, NV – When We Were Young Festival
November 7, 2022 – Toronto, ON – HISTORY =
November 9, 2022 – Chicago, IL – The Chicago Theatre =
November 11, 2022 – Cincinnati, OH – The Andrew J Brady Music Center =
November 13, 2022 – New York City, NY – The Beacon Theatre
November 15, 2022 – Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle =
November 16, 2022 – St. Augustine, FL – The St. Augustine Amphitheatre =
November 19, 2022 – Mexico City, MX – Corona Capital Festival
# with Claud
= with Ogi
& with Japanese Breakfast + Young the Giant
~ with Faux Real
% with Elke