Paramore’s ‘This Is Why’ Shows The Trio’s Still Got It


“This Is Why” (Courtesy Atlantic Records)

By Whit Fuller, Arts Writer


Paramore‘s latest album proves they’ve still got it — with energetic vocals and upbeat, pleasant tunes, “This Is Why” hits home and rarely misses.

‘This Is Why’

The album’s title track, “This Is Why,” has been trending on TikTok and generating meme-fueled buzz for the record’s release. Its fast pace and cheerful, faux-screamed chorus make it a perfect candidate for social media and a catchy tune in its own right. But the title track is arguably not the best song on the album, according to this writer, especially given the lengths of experimentation that the trio has put into so many of the album’s other tracks and previous albums over the years. While it is catchy and not a far cry from the band’s typically charged sound, the popularity of the track online dulls its presence on the album for anyone who’s scrolled in the last few months since its release as a single.

The album has several heavy-hitters that are overall great songs that endure after multiple listens in spite of its more overplayed and repetitive tracks, such as “This Is Why” and “Big Man, Little Dignity.”

On “Crave,” cool guitar riffs and even-tempered drum beats underlay an especially tranquil and dreamy-sounding Hayley Williams as she sings about the good times of a relationship. “Thick Skull” sets a different tone and brings an experimentalist indie vibe to the album’s more pepped-up tracks. Williams is soft, melodic and emotional in her delivery as she sings, “Hit over the head/epiphany/over my head/repeatedly/thick skull never did/nothing for me … ”

For those who want something a little more gritty in the mix, “You First” offers upbeat tempos with aggressive moments and deliveries to make for a track that truly sets itself apart from the others on the album. While “Thick Skull” is arguably one of the best songs on the album, there are several other tracks that stick with the listener including “Liar,” “Running Out of Time” and “Figure 8.”

Para-more to Come

While this album switches up the band’s original sound with tracks like “Thick Skull” and “This Is Why,” other tracks call back to earlier albums like 2007’s “Riot!.” “Liar” and “You First” are reminiscent of tracks like “Misery Business” — where Williams sports iconic bright orange hair and rages into the mic with all the fury of a woman scorned.

Vocalist Williams is in as wonderfully energetic a pitch as ever on this record. The lyrics make use of her range and penchant for performance in a way that doesn’t get old or differ too drastically from the band’s trademark sound. Even though the band has shifted their focus from overtly heavy, biting beats and vocals, they haven’t lost the charisma and upbeat chaos overlaid with Williams’ unique vocals that have endeared so many to their music.

If “This Is Why” is any indication of the work that’s to come from the trio, it’s safe to say that whatever more Paramore has to give — and audiences will be there to listen.


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