The endless cycle of bad things happening in the news can be, well, soul crushing, but here’s a scoop that’ll actually brighten your day: Paramore just dropped a new song. The punk-rock trio returned Thursday (Dec. 8) with “The News,” the second single off their upcoming album This Is Why, along with an angst-filled, horror-themed music video.
In the three-minute track, frontwoman Hayley Williams rages against the “exploitative, performative” news circuit constantly occupying her devices, and laments over feeling useless that she can’t do anything to help crises happening miles away from her. Drummer Zac Farro and guitarist Taylor York don’t make an appearance in the music video — which centers on Williams writhing around spookily with iris-less eyeballs and bloody teeth — but their musical presence throughout the raucous new track shouts just as loud as her piercing vocals.
“The News” comes a little more than two months behind “This Is Why,” the lead single and title track of their first album in five years, which is slated for a February release. “It feels like a happy medium between classic Paramore angst and bringing in some influences we’ve always had but never exploited,” Williams said of the song in a statement. “Watching Zac track drums for this one was one of my favorite memories from the studio.”
“Lyrically, it probably explains itself,” she continued. “The 24-hour news cycle is just impossible to comprehend. And I feel a pang of guilt when I unplug to protect my headspace. The common reaction, or non-reaction, seems to be dissociation. Not one of us is innocent of that and who could blame us?”
Leading up to the release of the track, Paramore teased fans by DMing them pieces of the lyrics and even going as far as to mail them parts of the song on CD. In November, the band wrapped up a preliminary leg of its ongoing tour, which will resume in February.
On “The News” release day, the trio appeared on Zane Lowe’s Apple Music 1 Show to chat about the song, with Williams revealing why they chose this moment to explore more political themes in their music. “It started with just the pandemic,” the Nashville native explained. “There was George Floyd, there were all these uprisings, there were marches and protests that we went to. There was a bombing by a conspiracy theorist on Christmas Day in Nashville.”
“It’s like we’re experiencing it from whatever vantage point we’re at, and there’s something to say about it,” she continued. “And I’m hoping, I’m praying and hoping that the perspective and the lyrics that we’re presenting is personal enough and as much with respect to everyone’s specific or potential vantage point that maybe other people can relate to it in some way that we haven’t even intended.”
Check out Paramore’s new song and video, “The News,” above:
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