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Music / Paramore

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L-R: Taylor York, Hayley Williams, Zac Farro

"The truth never set me free – so, I did it myself!"

Paramore are an American Alternative Rock band currently comprised of vocalist, guitarist, and keyboardist Hayley Williams; guitarist, keyboardist, and backing vocalist Taylor York; and drummer Zac Farro. Former guitarist Josh Farro and his brother Zac left the band in 2010, only for Zac to return in 2017; bassist Jeremy Davis left in 2015.

Williams, the Farros, and Davis formed in the band in 2004 when they were teenagers (in Zac's case, a preteen) living in Franklin, Tennessee (just south of Nashville). Davis left for five months just after the band was signed to Fueled by Ramen, and his departure formed the basis for much of their first album All We Know Is Falling, including the cover artwork and the album title. While none of the album's three singles charted upon release, a constant stream of touring, including the renowned Warped Tour, brought the band a devoted fanbase. York, a high school friend, joined around the release of their second album Riot! in 2007. This was the album that propelled them to mainstream success via numerous charting singles, most prominently its lead single "Misery Business", and helped to make Williams a prominent face of late 2000s American pop rock.

A year after the release of their third album, brand new eyes, the Farros quit the band, and the future of the group was in doubt until Williams announced that she, York (now playing all the guitars and drums in the studio), and Davis would continue as a trio, augmented with touring members. Their next album Paramore — so titled since it felt like a re-introduction of the band to the world and themselves — was released in 2013 and became their biggest critical and commercial success, spawning further hit singles like "Still Into You" and "Ain't It Fun".

The band underwent further internal turmoil in 2015, which culminated in Davis' second departure. In 2016, Paramore returned to the studio to develop new material with their original drummer Zac Farro; he returned to the main line-up as their full-time drummer the following year in time for the release of their fifth album, After Laughter.

In 2020, Hayley released her first solo album Petals for Armor, a pop album with serious and personal lyrics centered around her struggles with depression and her divorce. In 2021, she followed it up with a companion album called Flowers for Vases, which continues the self-reflective lyrics of the previous album but goes for a more folk-influenced music style.

After several years without performing or releasing new material, it was confirmed at the start of 2022 that the band had reassembled and entered the studio to work on their sixth album. The album, titled This Is Why, was released in 2023.

Paramore discography:


  • All We Know Is Falling (2005)Singles 
  • The Summer Tic EP (2006)
  • Riot! (2007)Singles 
  • The Final Riot! (2008)
  • Brand New Eyes (2009)Singles 
  • Singles Club EP (2011)
  • Paramore (2013)Singles 
  • After Laughter (2017)Singles 
  • This Is Why (2023)Singles 

Non-album singles

Hayley's discography:


  • Petals for Armor (2020)Singles 
  • Flowers for Vases / Descansos (2021)

Non-album singles

”I’m in the business of tropes, let’s take it from the top”:

  • Album Title Drop: "That's What You Get" is the only song on Riot! to contain the word "riot".
  • Alice Allusion: The video for "Brick By Boring Brick" features a young blonde girl getting lost in an increasingly nightmarish fantasy world brimming with Wonderland imagery, right down to a tea party with strangely dressed characters.
  • Alliterative Title: "Brick by Boring Brick".
  • Alpha Bitch: The girl in the music video for "Misery Business". She "gets hers" in the end when her cups get plucked out of her dress.
  • Anachronic Order: "crushcrushcrush", to an extreme. The song has a narrative, but it's completely shattered.
  • Ascended Extra: Taylor York. A childhood friend with Josh and Zac, he was close to being an original member of the band and even helped write a song for All We Know is Falling and recorded some guitar for Riot!. Hunter's departure Taylor to become a full member for their first live album and "Decode" (although he was not listed as one yet as the band was wary of becoming known as a Revolving Door Band). When Taylor proved popular with fans, he was officially announced as a full member as of the recording of brandneweyes and has been the only consistent member of the band (besides Hayley) since.
  • Attempted Homewrecker: In the music video for "Misery Business," when the Alpha Bitch sees a couple happily talking in the hallway, she shoves the girl out of the way and plants a Forceful Kiss on the boy.
  • Audience Participation: In live performances of "Misery Business", Hayley would usually pick 1-3 fans to either sing, play guitar, or both.
  • Band of Relatives: Three sets:
    • The Farro brothers, who were co-founders, left in 2010, and saw only Zac return in 2016.
    • The York brothers, current guitarist Taylor and touring member Justin.
    • The Howard Brothers, albeit briefly, touring third guitarist and keyboard player Jonnote  and touring bassist Joey, who replaced Jeremy Davis.
  • Bilingual Bonus: "C'est Comme Ca" is French for "It Is What It Is."
  • Broken Pedestal: Discussed in "Idle Worship" — the lyrics alluding to "stan" culture and the inevitability of fans being let down if they continue to worship a celebrity (specifically, Hayley herself) and treating them as if they can do no wrong.
    "Oh, it's such a long and awful lonely fall
    Down from this pedestal that you keep putting me on
    What if I fall on my face? What if I make a mistake?
    If it's okay, a little grace would be appreciated."
  • The Bus Came Back: Zac Farro's return to the band in advance of After Laughter came as a surprise to many observers.
  • Catchphrase: Hayley always peppers in at least one "We. Are. PARAAAMOOOOOORRRE!" into each show.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander / Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Hayley is downright odd at times in videos, and her Twitter posts sometimes became inane ramblings. Taylor isn't further behind, with cryptically endearing Instagram posts and tweets that are right in the middle of nonsenseland.
  • Cool Shades: Hayley sports black-and-white-rimmed pair in the video for "Playing God" and round yellow-tinted ones in "Told You So" (both very cool).
  • Cruise Episode: The band has hosted three themed cruise events called "Parahoy" featuring multiple performances from Paramore and friendly bands.
  • Darker and Edgier:
    • The music video for "Brick by Boring Brick" becomes this starting at the bridge. "Part II" is described as more hopeless compared to "Let the Flames Begin" and is probably the darkest song on Paramore.
    • The lyrics in After Laughter are generally more cynical and downbeat (despite the more upbeat music) compared to the overall more optimistic Paramore.
    • Hayley's two solo albums (Petals For Armor and Flowers for Vases) are VERY dark compared to her work with Paramore. Like After Laughter, they were heavily inspired by the hard times she faced over the mid-2010s, due to her struggles with depression, her divorce, etc. She even uses full-blown F-bombs in a couple songs.
    • This Is Why isn't quite AS dark as After Laughter but still shows more cynicism and world weariness than the band's first four albums.
  • Dramatic Choir Number: "Ain't It Fun" has a gospel choir the repeating bridge of the song.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: All We Know is Falling has harsh vocals on a couple tracks, something the band hasn't done since (especially after Josh Farro's departure).
    • Before Paramore, Hayley was part of a group called Mammoth City Messengers. Their only album consists of Christian pop, electronic, hip-hop, and even rap elements.
  • Epic Rocking: "Future" clocks in at 7:51; only the first three minutes or so feature any lyrics, with the back half entirely comprised of heavy guitars.
  • Fake-Out Fade-Out: "Future" features one during its ending minutes of Epic Rocking.
  • Fantasy-Forbidding Father: "Brick by Boring Brick" is from the perspective of one of these (or at least a concern-troll friend), portrayed positively. The speaker insists that the subject's romantic views and love of fairy tales are keeping her deluded and prone to being taken advantage of.
  • Fiery Redhead: Hayley is best known for coloring her hair some form of red or orange, from tangerine all the way down to crimson, and her energy cements the "fiery" part. She's joked that she has trouble remembering what color her hair really is anymore.
  • Gender-Blender Name: Both Hayley and Taylor have names that can be applied to the other gender.
  • Genre Roulette: They have done everything from Emo to Punk to pop to New Jack Swing to New Wave to Post-Punk.
  • Genki Girl: Hayley, energy, bright hair, diminutive stature and all.
  • Guinness Episode: The "Ain't It Fun" music video breaks 10 world records:
    • Fastest Time to Break 30 Clocks with Guitars: 31.33 seconds
    • Most Feathers Caught in 30 Seconds: 18 by Jeremy
    • Most Vinyl Records Broken in 1 Minute: 58
    • Longest (recorded) Time Spent Spinning a Record on a Finger: 32.81 seconds by Taylor
    • Fastest Time to Run Through 10 Banners: 9.19 seconds
    • Most Cartwheels Done While Wearing Boots in 30 Seconds: 7 by Hayley
    • Fastest Time to Walk Backwards 30 Feet While Blindfolded and Holding Stuffed Animals: 6.14 seconds by Taylor
    • Fastest Time to Unwrap a "Mummy" (Hayley wrapped in toilet paper): 9.75 seconds by Jeremy and Taylor
    • Longest Scream While Riding in a Convertible: 8.48 seconds by Hayley
    • Most World Records Broken in a Music Video: 10 by Paramore
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Hayley stands at about 5'2; every guy that's been in the band is a giant compared to her.
  • I Am the Band: Hayley is the only signed member of Paramore, but she has expressed her distaste for this setup, as it has played a role in much of the group's Revolving Door Band status. The trope itself has come up in different ways in their band (and Williams') output.
    • In a 2020 interview, Williams explained that she was signed as a solo artist by Atlantic in 2003, but she didn't want to be one and had to convince the label to promote the band she had formed with her high school friends instead of making her into the next Avril Lavigne. She also noted that Atlantic was the only label that wanted to sign her who would even entertain the idea of releasing music by Paramore, and having her as the only signed member of the band was a compromise that she now regrets.
    • Williams wrote the lyrics to "Conspiracy" about the notion that the band only existed to be a launchpad for her solo career when that wasn't the case at all.
    • In 2013, at a private gig in London. She brought up a review of the then-latest album that stated "it feels like a solo debut". She then tore said reviewer a new one by claiming, "I wouldn't be here, and I wouldn't want to be here, if it weren't for the two people standing to my left and right".
    • When Williams finally released solo albums in 2020 and 2021, they were an arty synthpop record (Petals for Armor) and a quiet acoustic folk album (Flowers for Vases) that, while not inaccessible, were much less pop-friendly than anything Paramore had released up to that point.
  • Jade-Colored Glasses: "Rose-Colored Boy" is from the perspective of someone wearing these, who is sick of a guy she knows who has an overly optimistic view of an increasingly terrible world.
    You say "We gotta look on the bright side"
    I say "Well maybe if you wanna go blind"
    You say my eyes are getting too dark now,
    But boy, you ain't ever seen my mind.
  • Kaleidoscope Hair: Hayley, who has cycled through almost every conceivable hair color at some point during their music career (in part because it's promotion for her hair dye company, Good Dye Young).
  • Lighter and Softer: Their third album could arguably be this, especially with songs such as "The Only Exception" and "Misguided Ghosts". The fourth album definitely qualifies, as it's a fair bit poppier than the other three. The fifth album is by far the lightest and softest in the band's discography... instrumentally, at least.
  • Lyrical Dissonance: All over the place.
    • "Ain't It Fun" isn't about having fun, it's about a sad loner whom alienated their friends and can't deal with the real world...
    • Don't be fooled by the vibrant catchiness of "Hard Times"; it's about someone who is teetering on the edge of a full breakdown. In fact, most of After Laughter is this, as it's both about Hayley's strained relationships with her previous bandmates as well as having many songs about dangerous or broken relationshipsnote .
  • Male Band, Female Singer: One of the most known examples in this genre (and the current page image).
  • Messy Hair: Taylor has the curly variety when he lets his hair grow out.
  • Metal Scream: The end of "My Heart" features a pretty strong one. A frequent occurrence in live shows too.
  • Miniscule Rocking: The self-titled album contains three "Interlude" songs played on ukulele, each under two minutes ("I'm Not Angry Anymore" is under one).
  • Ms. Fanservice: Hayley's not afraid to bare her midriff and show some skin sometimes.
    • She spends the whole video for "Fake Happy" running around in a tight catsuit while facing away from the camera, essentially giving the audience a 3 and a half minute look at her butt, though given the ending of the video, this may cross over into Fan Disservice.
    • She spent some of the later tours of the After Laughter era performing without pants. Instead she wore see-through tights and short shorts combined with oversized shirts or jackets, thus looking like she wasn't wearing anything below the waist some nights.
  • New Sound Album: Paramore started out as Post-Hardcore-influenced emo pop punk on All We Know is Falling, but every album since has had their own distinct sound:
    • Riot largely removed the post-hardcore influences in favor of a more alternative rock and Power Pop-oriented sound while still being emo pop punk at its core.
    • Brand New Eyes is basically a mixture of the sounds on their first two albums.
    • Paramore removes the pop punk sound almost entirely in favor of a more straightforward pop rock sound with elements of power pop, new wave, Folk Rock and even Post-Rock, among others.
    • After Laughter is a Synth-Pop-influenced new wave album, being their biggest departure to date.
    • This Is Why has an unambiguous Post-Punk revival style, though the new wave constituent on their past two records is still present.
  • New Wave Music: Where the band's sound has been slowly trending: it started getting a bit more electronically based in their self-titled album, and After Laughter goes fully into the genre.
  • Overly Narrow Superlative: "Ain't It Fun" proudly presents itself as the music video with the most records broken, all of which also enter the trope.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Five foot two and a hundred pounds soaking wet? Hayley checks those boxes. High kicking acrobatics? Checks the other box.
  • Pop Punk: Gradually became one of pop punk's preeminent bands in the late 2000s and early 2010s.
  • Psycho Ex-Girlfriend: "(One Of Those) Crazy Girls" is sung from the perspective of one of these who breaks into her ex's home to smell the clothes in his closet.
  • Revolving Door Band: Hayley Williams is the only member of Paramore who is actually signed to a record contract, which has contributed to tremendous turnover. The band didn't release two albums with the same official lineup until 2023 with This Is Why, six full albums and nearly two decades into the band's life.
  • Rock Star Song: "Fences" is a decidedly bitter one about dealing with paparazzi and public perception.
  • Rose-Haired Sweetie: Hayley, sometimes (most notably in the video for "Playing God").
  • Self-Titled Album: Their fourth studio album is one.
  • Sequel Song: "Part II" is meant as one to "Let the Flames Begin", down to starting with the same lyrics. For a time, the band played the songs back-to-back in concerts.
  • Shout-Out: Paramore are, as with most '90s and '00s emo bands, big fans of Hardcore Punk, to the point where "Born For This" is built around a big reference to "Liberation Frequency" by Refused.
  • Silly Love Songs: "Still Into You" is an upbeat, happy, straight-forward, "I love you" song, with an idealism not present in earlier songs.
  • Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids!: "Rose-Colored Boy" is all about the singer being extremely annoyed with another person for their incessant optimism.
  • Sixth Ranger: Taylor. He co-wrote Paramore's very first song "Conspiracy" featured on their debut album, but didn't start playing with the band live until the Riot! era, became an official member with brand new eyes, and briefly was the only official member of the band aside from Hayley before Zac's return.
  • Stalker with a Crush: "(One of Those) Crazy Girls" has Hayley insisting that she's not this... but she did copy her ex's keys, so why not break into their house and go smell the clothes in their closet?
  • Stepford Smiler: "Fake Happy" is all about Hayley "drawing her lipstick wider than her mouth" and putting on a happy face for the public.
  • Studio Chatter: Some is featured at the end of "Anklebiters", at the beginning of "Future", and before the third chorus of "Still Into You".
  • Surprisingly Gentle Song: "Misguided Ghosts", "The Only Exception", and "Hate to See Your Heart Break" all are quiet and reflective reprieves on louder and more emotional albums.
  • Surreal Music Video: "Still Into You" has a whimsical, mildly surreal feel to it, with the strangest scenes being Hayley waking up in a bedroom full of birthday cakes, and later, the whole band rowing a rowboat indoors on top of blue balloons. The director commented that, instead of just telling the love story suggested by the lyrics, the video is meant to be a series of metaphors for what falling in love feels like.
    • "Running Out of Time" starts with Hayley alone in a rehearsal space, before a guitar and a pile of drums come to life and attack her and she climbs into a guitar case and enters a surreal landscape. Turns out she was just daydreaming while waiting for the rest of the band.
  • Technician vs. Performer: In the video for "Still Into You," you have Hayley performing spontaneous seeming dance moves while surrounded by perfectly choreographed ballerinas.
  • Those Two Guys: The group is often known as Hayley Williams and those two guys (with who those guys are often changing).
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: "Ignorance" and "Playing God" are both rock song diss tracks listing all of the things the singer despises about the other person (from their ignorance to their God complex).
  • Traumatic Haircut: The mean girl in the "Misery Business" video scissors the braid off one of her unfortunate classmates, to the classmate's dismay.
  • True Companions: Hayley and Taylor, in particular. She often cites him as the reason she hasn't given up and Paramore hasn't broken up after everything they've been through, and they acknowledge their close bond very often (most notably at this Parahoy performance). This eventually culminated in them entering a romantic relationship sometime after Hayley's divorce.
  • Two Guys and a Girl: The Self-Titled era set up. You have Taylor and Jeremy as the two guys, and Hayley as the girl. They've had various touring members for live shows, including Ilan Rubin - who did drums on the self-titled album - and Aaron Gillespie. The After Laughter era continues this, with Taylor and Hayley accompanied by returning Paramore drummer Zac Farro, rather than Jeremy (who left). They're still backed by touring members for live shows.
  • Ugly All Along: The music video for "Misery Business" features an archetypal Alpha Bitch going around bullying people, making other girls jealous, and the like, until Hayley Williams confronts her, and wipes all her makeup away with toilet roll, and also removes the pads from her top for good measure, exposing her for what kind of person she really is.
  • Video Full of Film Clips: "Decode" is this with clips of Twilight, although there is also a band-only version available.
  • Vocal Evolution: Hayley, in the band's pop punk days, had a harsher and even slightly British-sounding vocal style (no doubt, paying hommage to bands like Ramones). She almost completely dropped it on the band's self-titled album in favor of more natural and melodic (but still harsh in parts) vocals.
  • X-Ray Sparks: Hayley's cartoonish skeleton is revealed when she gets struck by equally cartoonish lightning in the "Hard Times" music video.

Alternative Title(s): Hayley Williams