Paramore cannot catch a break. It seems that every time they go through an album cycle, there’s band member drama. The group, now preparing its fifth record, has not had the same lineup for any of their releases. For most artists, this would be a death knell. But Paramore? They shake it off and write better, more unpredictable tunes. “Hard Times” is no exception.

The song continues the band’s move away from their pop-punk roots, diving headfirst into 80s New Wave. This sounds like the best parts of Peter Gabriel, the B-52s and the Talking Heads blended together. On paper, this seems like trying to fit a square peg in a round hole. But with Taylor York’s playing a slick, rhythm guitar, Zac Farro back on the drums and Hayley Williams’ upbeat delivery about personal hardships, it works better than expected. If this is a hint of what’s to come, then Paramore’s resilience will once again win out against its hardships.

The band’s new album, After Laughter, drops on May 12.


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