With fiery vocals, spunky 'tude and faux-angsty pop-punk sound, singer Hayley Williams, her band boys -- Josh Farro, Jeremy Davis, Zac Farro and Taylor York -- and her famously brightly-dyed hair have been inspiring precious pink-haired teenagers under their now-famous moniker of Paramore since 2004.
Tempering the punch of their punk influences with their openly Christian beliefs and down-home Southern charm, Paramore has perfected its own bizarre concoction of religion, angst and pop, creating the perfect punk indulgence for mainstream teenagers.
Musically, Paramore is sheer teen scenester bliss (think Panic! at the Disco and Motion City Soundtrack); but politically, Paramore is candy-coated good clean fun, all wrapped up in a shiny pink-and-black bow that leaves a nation full of faintly (only faintly) rebellious tweens salivating for more.
And so, after successfully duking it out with a nasty case of laryngitis earlier this fall, Williams and the boys are back on the road supporting their newest album, Brand New Eyes--and if last night's show at the Uptown is any indication, they are tearing that shit up.
Kicking off their set with a dark, murky opening number, Paramore tightened the emotional screws before catapulting into their latest single, "Ignorance," with a ferocious force that lasted the duration of their hour-and-change long set.
Cheerful, spunky and ruthlessly energetic, Williams bounced around stage with infectious enthusiasm, belting out morose lyrics with a light-heartedness that would seem hypocritical if it wasn't so damn fun to watch.
Hitting high notes with crowd-pleasing tracks like "Misery Business," Paramore's strongest points were consistently their biggest hits, with Williams and her boys juicing pop-punk confections like "CrushCrushCrush" and "Decode" for every last sizzling emo-infused drop.
Though technically pristine and undeniably passionate, Paramore's set was infused with a sense of rehearsed repetition -- between Williams' overblown crowd orchestrations and the band's seamless transitions between songs, gestures and even dance moves, it seemed entirely possible that Paramore's set was a complete copy of their last, totally preserved and transplanted to good old KC. (An awesome, impeccably executed copy, I imagine, but a copy nonetheless.)
Despite the glaring lack of gritty spontaneity in Paramore's on-stage antics, it was clear from the hundreds of glowing cell phones, two-handed heart silhouettes and hand-made "[HEART] U HAYLEY" signs that KC fans were way beyond pleased--they were euphoric.
And with a set filled with undeniably catchy beats and crunchy riffs paired with an essentially flawless execution, who's going to argue with a few hundred gushing Paramore fans?
Hey, not me.
-- Review by Elke Mermis
I Caught Myself
That's What You Get
Turn It Off
Here We Go Again
Where the Lines Overlap
Misguided Ghosts (Acoustic)
Brick by Boring Brick