Matt Davies-Kreye (vocals) told Kerrang! magazine September 13, 2008 the origins of this song: "I think this was one of the first songs that was completed for the record from a bunch of ideas we had compiled during the last few tours of 2007. I remember thrashing the verse and chorus ideas around my house on a mini-Martin acoustic guitar that I love to write with. The chorus really shone even on acoustic and the guys really liked where the song was going, so we sat down together and worked on a middle section and pre-chorus idea until it clicked."
Davies-Kreye told Kerrang!: "The song itself is about the power of words and how they can change the way you see the simplest of things."
"Abracadabra" was inspired by Diana Ross and The Supremes. Steve Miller first met the girl group when they performed together on NBC's Hullabaloo in 1966, and he wrote the lyrics after spotting Diana Ross skiing in the mountains years later.