Pop-punk singer Hayley Williams on Paramore nearly splitting: 'I wanted to start a new band'

Alex Taylor
Hayley Williams

Pop-punk band Paramore have spoken out over their numerous internal bust-ups, with lead singer Hayley Williams revealing she felt "sick of this crap" in 2015 and wanted to "start a new band".

The revelations come as the three-piece prepare for the release of their new album After Laughter, fresh from unveiling 80s beach-pop inspired lead single Hard Times.

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Williams, the band's only continuous member, is now 28-years-old and battle-hardened in surviving tensions that plagued Paramore, who ascended to the height of emo pop-punk in the 2000s — and beyond — co-headlining Reading and Leeds in 2014.

Misery business?

The most notable fissure occurred in 2010, when, two years after the band pulled their European tour, lead guitarist Jack Farro, William's former boyfriend, quit the band alongside his younger brother, Zac, the drummer.

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Announcing their departure via a blog, the open letter hit out at the label's alleged controlling behaviour and reserved particular scorn for Williams' father who doubled as the band's manager.

Farro claimed he would "constantly threaten to 'pull the plug' on the whole band if we complained about anything, suggesting that we were hired guns… riding on the coattails of 'Hayley's dream'".

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Despite the setback, Paramore continued as a three-piece. Bassist Jeremy Davis and guitarist Taylor York stayed on to find mainstream success with new album Brand New Eyes, only for Davis to suddenly quit, sparking the next implosion.

Although unable to discuss Davis' departure in detail due to legal obligations, in a revealing interview on the band's tensions, Williams told The Guardian: "What I will say is that it's such bullshit that we're in a lawsuit," sighs Williams. "I wasn't OK for a while; maybe I'm still not."

Speaking on the angst-ridden history of the band Williams continued: "Two years ago I asked Taylor if we could start a new band. I was so sick of this crap. I said we should just try something new, give it a new name."

York added: "I've wanted to quit this band so many times. Going through all this conflict and drama over the years… I was just like: 'Man, I feel like we can keep going, but this is not worth it if we don't want to be here.'"

Getting through hard times

Williams says she still does not know why the band remained together, but, after a period of healing, Zac has returned behind the drums, reportedly with his brother's blessing.

Explaining the turnaround, she told the paper: "We've all lost that teenage thing of trying to hold on so tight to someone, not realising you're choking them. [When] you become an adult, you hold each other loosely, so everyone can show up as themselves.

"We've spent more time hanging out and laughing doing this record and equally crying together over things that happened that we never dealt with."

Paramore's new album After Laughter is out on 12 May.

Paramore June 2017 tour dates:

15 –‪ Dublin, Ireland @ Olympia
16 – Belfast, United Kingdom @ Waterfront
18 – Manchester, United Kingdom @ O2 Apollo
19 – London, United Kingdom @ Royal Albert Hall
21 – Bristol, United Kingdom @ Colston Hall
22 – Edinburgh, United Kingdom @ Usher Hall




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