I’m going to do something a little different with this one. When it comes to Paramore I am always going to seem a bit impartial. So, here’s the thing – never have I heard a Paramore song I would give less than a 6.0. Keeping that in mind, let’s work on a little project to determine (6-10) what rating the new single “Now” should get.
Upper Level Paramore Tracks (9-10): “Hallelujah”, “Misguided Ghosts”, “Pressure”, “My Heart”, “Careful”, “In The Mourning”, “Renegade”, “Never Let This Go”, “All I Wanted”, “Conspiracy”, “Brick By Boring Brick”, “That’s What You Get”, “Let The Flames Begin”, “Born For This”
Upper Mid-Level Paramore Tracks (8-8.5): “Monster”, “Franklin”, “Brighter”, “Here We Go Again”, “For A Pessimist, I’m Pretty Optimistic”, “Miracle”, “When It Rains”, “Feeling Sorry”, “Decode”, “Turn It Off”, “Looking Up”, “Decoy”
Middle Level Paramore Tracks (7-7.5): “Crushcrushcrush”, “Ignorance”, “Misery Business”, “Emergency”, “All We Know”, “We Are Broken”, “Where The Lines Overlap”, “Playing God”, “The Only Exception”
“Lower” Level Paramore Tracks (6-6.5): “Fences”, “Whoa”, “Rewind”, “Stop This Song”
When you analyze the way some of the tracks are scored, it is clear that most of the time, my impression is high – I understand that. While listening repeatedly to the new release, which is slated to appear on the band’s fourth full-length (Paramore) on April 9th, “Now” belongs in that upper echelon for sure. It displays a trio clearly with a bit of a chip on their shoulders. As Hayley Williams belts over the bridge, “There’s a time and a place to die / And this ain’t it!” you kind of see the mindset they have acquired over the past four years of mostly silence. Well, silence no more.
The thing that immediately stands out to me is not Hayley Williams, interestingly enough. “Now” sounds almost nothing like anything recorded by the band since 2005. It almost has an experimental feel to it at times, and all the while, Williams is at the forefront doing what she does best. Yes, she is the focal point of the band, but is that not the point? Imagine an instance where that isn’t the case? No thank you.
There are outstanding elements to the song, mainly coming in the form the colorful female front brings to it. Although I am impressed by the differences that are being displayed by the band, it feels similar to “Ignorance.” Before Brand New Eyes released in 2009, the lead single seemed different and impressive, but when it was lumped into the rest of the album – it was just another track. For that reason, I remain hopeful (and extremely confident, in case you had not noticed) that the other songs will stun me.
While I am in no way blown away by the release (that would be a 10, fyi), it has me extremely excited for April 9th. Too much so, in fact. My expectations were high before – I knew they were going to sound different. Their approach to the album was just too different, and so the fact that I am hearing something so new and foreign is not such a surprise. It does, however, leave me wanting more than just the one track. Luckily, 16 more are slated to present themselves in the coming months – hold me back, bro!