Paramore’s comeback to the stage has been long overdue, and touring on their newest album After Laughter has been significant for fans and the band itself (especially with the return of drummer Zac Farro). Paramore has really reinvented the image they’ve slowly been evolving from since their infamous Riot! days with their new electric aesthetic, lyrical integrity, and overall vulnerability as humans. Their colorful and vibrant production on "Tour Two" (the North American leg of their latest tour cycle) has made their shows so ethereal and dream-like, and we got to welcome Paramore back to Boston over the weekend, after all these years, at the Boston Opera House.
To say Paramore knows their stuff in this industry is an understatement. They have been some of the best performers and songwriters since the beginning of their time as a band, line-up changes and all. They showcased this especially well during the show with their enchanting rendition of “Everywhere” by Fleetwood Mac, taking a classic hit and sprinkling some Paramore magic. Hayley Williams’ vocals alone have reached a point of unmatched greatness. Her wide range and lush vibrato are unlike they’ve ever been before, and she sang and danced so seamlessly all night without ever missing a beat. While Williams’ certainly brings the stage theatrics, each member (both the originals and touring musicians) had a critical part in their robust live sound. We even got to see Farro step out from behind the kit and take over the front of the stage to perform a song from his personal project Half Noise, with guitarist Taylor York shredding away as always. To put it simply, Paramore is certainly the definition of a musical Gestalt.
The set list was a lively mixture that catered to both long-term and post-Self-Titled era fans alike. They performed a good amount of songs off After Laughter, such as my personal favorites “26”, “Caught In The Middle,” and “Fake Happy”. However, my highlight of the night was to be able to hear one of my favorites of theirs, “I Caught Myself”, live for the first time. Of course, Riot!-fan favorites “Misery Business” and “That’s What You Get” had everyone up and off their feet, especially when Williams' declared the songs as celebrating the 10th anniversary of Riot! and took us all back to our most emo stages of life. We all know those days are long gone for Paramore (and ourselves), but seeing them have such a light-hearted response and hearing the songs played with their matured sound felt oddly comforting after all these years.
"Tour Two" still has some dates left, with the Florida dates being rescheduled for later in the year due to Hurricane Irma. If you have yet to see them on their latest tour route, there are still plenty of chances to get your Paramore fix after their years of silence. Williams’ made it clear that this isn’t the end yet, and we are certainly grateful to know that Paramore is still a band.
Remaining "Tour Two" Dates:
10/10 - Bethlehem, PA @ Sands Bethlehem Event Center
10/12 - Montreal, CA @ St. Denis Theatre
10/13 - Toronto, CA @ Massey Hall
10/15 - Akron, OH @ Akron Civic Theater
10/17 - Nashville, TN @ Ryman Auditorium
12/05 - Orlando, FL @ Dr. Phillips Center*
12/06 - Miami, FL @ The Fillmore Miami Beach*