The piano-led song finds the singer pulling away from a volatile relationship. “But every time you hurt me, the less that I cry/And every time you leave me, the quicker these tears dry,” he sings, soulfully. “And every time you walk out, the less I love you/Baby we don’t stand a chance/It’s sad, but it’s true.” The lilting chorus is buoyed by a choir, as they harmonize, “I’m way too good at goodbyes.”
In an interview with Apple Music that ran just prior to the release of “Too Good at Goodbyes,” Smith said the song is one of the more personal ones on his upcoming LP. “This song is about me and about a relationship I was in,” he explained to Zane Lowe during the interview. “This album actually is not all about me. There’s about four songs that are about me, and the rest are about different things and different people in my life and what they’ve gone through.”
Smith also provided a few details about the album, though he did not reveal its title. “It was so important when I was writing this record for me to just challenge myself and be scared again,” he explained of the process and added that he loved working with Jimmy Napes again (they’ve previously co-written several songs, including “Stay With Me” and “Writing’s on the Wall”). It will be available in two versions: one with 10 tracks, the other with 14 and it will be released before Christmas. He also revealed that he collaborated on one track with Timbaland, and the album includes a duet.
The new album will be the follow-up to his acclaimed 2014 breakout debut, In the Lonely Hour. The record went two-times platinum and spawned three Top 10 hits – “Stay With Me,” “I’m Not the Only One” and, upon re-release, “Lay Me Down” – and garnered Smith four Grammy awards, including Best New Artist and Record of the Year and Song of the Year for “Stay With Me.” Smith capped off this impressive run with “Writing’s On the Wall,” which won the Oscar and Golden Globe for Best Original Song.
However, since his Oscar win, Smith has been relatively quiet about his new music. In a 2016 interview with The Associated Press, Smith said that his next album would be even more emotionally heavy than the already deeply personal In the Lonely Hour. “It’s really deep shit that’s coming out,” he said, adding: “I’m putting my heart even more out on the fucking line. I’m going even deeper. I can’t believe I’m even doing it, but I’m going even deeper.”