Paramore Performs Their Hits for L.A. Fans at a Sold-Out Greek Theatre
Paramore has slowly, but surely, transformed from an aught-2000’s emo-esque rock band to playing what now can only be described as an incredibly diverse sound. Last night (Sept. 26) lead singer Hayley Williams and company played the Greek Theatre, as part of Tour Two with Best Coast, to a sold-out house of die-hards and new faces eager to hear tracks from the band’s latest effort. “After Laughter” dropped earlier this year to great acclaim, spreading across airwaves and into the hearts of millennials who wished they were born in the glamour of the 1980’s. The album features all manner of synths, dance beats and wonderful pop-tropes from the era, making their show an ideal time to pull your pony tail to the side, slap on your denim jacket and whip out your best dance moves. As Willliams said during the show, “We’re here to celebrate music… that we’ve survived so far.”
Drummer Zac Farro parted ways with the band in 2010, only to return last year for their latest album and once again become a full-time member. It’s said that during Farro’s hiatus, Paramore took a more pop-centric approach to their music, and “After Laughter” shows this, subsequently making their live shows an extension of their now brightly-colored pop sound. Even Tour Two’s on-stage art and projections are bursting with color and retro inspired designs, lending to the 80’s synth-flow on some of their latest tracks. “Hard Times” is a great example, a song that appropriately kicked off their set. Bubbly, poppy, fun and bounce-able, complimenting other new tunes they’d play later in the set like the tropical-rock tune “Told You So” or the No Doubt-inspired “Caught in the Middle.” Appropriate for more than one reason, in fact, as No Doubt’s bassist Tony Kanal was spotted dancing in the crowd with his family. They paid homage to another legendary band by way of “Everywhere,” a Fleetwood Mac cover sung beautifully by Williams.
There was plenty more for fans to take away from the night including older hits like “Still into You,” “Misery Business” from the acclaimed “RIOT!” album from 2007 and closing the main set with “Ain’t It Fun.” During “Misery,” the Williams brought a fan on stage who fan who claimed to know all the words. A risky move, for both herself and the fan, but the Paramore die-hard came through, singing every word alongside her idol.
All this, before taking an acoustic respite with “26,” an emotionally tender ballad which found the room standing still in a rare moment of quiet. “Hate to See Your Heart Break” found another moment of what felt like a close embrace with Williams herself as a sea of cell phone lights waved through the open air theater.
“Rose-Colored Boy” closed out the night with its effervescence and catchy hooks straight out of the 1980’s. Williams, at this point, is a basically modern-day Blondie. This a personality that
the world was apparently craving as Paramore is as popular as they’ve ever been. And this show proved it.