The Paramore return takes on real, electric substance today with an album title, After Laughter, plus its tracklist and release date, May 12. There's also a potent new single and vibrant music video, "Hard Times," which opens the upcoming album. Watch above as Paramore stir up a mix of '80s aesthetics and Tumblr-bred, streaky, pixelized animation.
One could reasonably assume "Hard Times" is about the state of the world in 2017, with lines begging for reassurance, pondering why we even try, and the relative benefits of hiding in a hole in the ground till this shit is over. But lines like "Walking around with my little raincloud / Hanging over my head, and it ain’t coming down" and "Hit me with lightning / Maybe I’ll come alive" also mirror the era-agnostic experience of depression, a topic Hayley Williams has discussed with fans and press. (Update: And did again, today, with the New York Times.)
The track is by Paramore guitarist Taylor York and producer/session musician Justin Meldal-Johnsen (Beck, Jimmy Eat World), who did the whole last album, 2013's self-titled. A press release confirms that original drummer Zac Farro is, as has been implied for months, back in the group after seven years away. Paramore recorded their fifth LP in their hometown of Nashville, a first in their 13-year career.
On Twitter, the band told its 4.21 million followers, "Hello and thanks for waiting. we are pleased to present Hard Times from our new album After Laughter. p.s. it’s good to talk to you again."
The tracklist is as follows:
1. "Hard Times"
2. "Rose-Colored Boy"
3. "Told You So"
5. "Fake Happy"
9. "Caught In The Middle"
10. "Idle Worship"
11. "No Friend"
12. "Tell Me How"
Flash 10 years back and watch this ’07 interview where Paramore recall their first-ever band practice: