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Paramore’s self-titled album should make a comeback when revisiting pop-punk nostalgia

5/5 Stars

After a resurgence in popularity as a result of a viral Tik Tok singing trend, Paramore’s “All I Wanted” from their 2009 album “Brand New Eyes” put the band’s older songs back on the map. As one of the bands’ newer old-releases, Paramore’s 2013 self-titled album “Paramore” follows “Brand New Eyes” and the aftermath of losing two band members, Josh and Zac Farro, dealing with being alone, heartbreak and brutal honesty and kicking down the door to get what’s wanted. This album blends the bands’ previous punk-rock albums with their newer age of pop-rock, making “Paramore” a defining moment in the band’s career. 

Peaking as a Billboard No. 1 album soon after its release and remaining for nearly 70 weeks, “Paramore” brought with it several top hits fans should revisit. Starting with the album’s hit, “Ain’t It Fun,” which discusses the descent into the “real world,” albeit in a punchy funk, and followed by the equally upbeat “Still Into You,” which, as the title suggests, deals with infatuation even through heartbreak, Paramore claimed No. 10 and No. 24 spots and carrying through the summer. 

Other featured songs which follow the same pop-rock feel include “Daydreaming” and “(One of Those) Crazy Girls,” followed by songs which blended Paramore’s older and newer eras such as “Fast in My Car” and “Grow Up.” Others follow the same punk-rock rhythm fans were used to, such as “Anklebiters” and “Proof,” laying heavy on guitar and drums as opposed to the synth sounds used in their newest 80s-inspired album, “After Laughter.” This album works to balance this contrast, breaking it up with a three-part “Interlude” featuring the lead singer Hayley Williams’ voice and simple ukulele. 

Perhaps more normalized now that Paramore has a further-developed sound in their 2017 album, “After Laughter,” fans were mixed on the initial sound of Paramore’s self-titled release, creating a divide between old and new Paramore. As reflected upon by AltPress, Williams responded to this divide by recognizing her growth both as an artist and a human being in an Instagram post, “Old Pmore is on Youtube. Whenever you want! But I still promise I will never ask you to be whoever you were 15 years ago.” Within the current pop-punk alternative scene, the defining characteristics of heavy guitar and drums fall more loosely among current hit bands. 

Appropriate for a charged political climate, pop-punk and punk-rock hits are starting to crop up again for good reason. With this album, in particular, the hits play on nostalgia, offering some comfort as the band paces the listener through a heavy call to action with Paramore’s “Now,” pausing and checking-in during an emotional awakening and ending with hope for the “Future.” One of the apparent goals of this album was to process loss and claim authority over one’s situation (whether it be mental or physical) as illustrated by “Still Into You” and “Grow Up,” and now more than ever, many can relate to the feelings of self-isolation, frustration and asking for change. 

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