After surviving a messy split from their long time guitarist and drummer as well as a three year-long hiatus, American pop punk band Paramore is back with a new self-titled album and an upcoming show in KL. JUICE speaks to bassist Jeremy Davis about the band as a trio and their soon to be released record.
Hey Jeremy! First of all, congratulations on your wedding. How has married life been for you?
Thank you. It’s been good, though it’s not all that different. My wife and I have always been best friends, and we’ve supported each other in everything we do. We both still travel and stuff, but it’s been really fun and amazing.
Where was the band’s direction after Brand New Eyes?
For a while, it has been a difficult period. There was so much negative energy in the band to the point where we wanted to just drop everything. But then the three of us decided that we want to remain as a band, and this won’t break us. From there, we started writing and recording so many songs that we kind of realized that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Has Josh and Zac’s departure from the band altered the song writing and recording process for you guys in any way?
Definitely. For one, we didn’t have a drummer. It’s really hard to write rock songs without a drummer, but we were lucky enough to have a guy named Ilan Rubin (former drummer for Lostprophets and Nine Inch Nails) to play for us. Taylor [York] definitely had the biggest growth in the band. He came up with some of the coolest bass lines, and we’ve never heard him play that way before. Being the primary songwriter definitely brought out the creative and experimental side of him. For Hayley [Williams], she’s always been an amazing songwriter and for this album, she definitely wrote a lot of great lyrics that are upbeat even after going through such a tough time. She’s an amazing talent.
By the time the album is released it will be over 3 and a half years since Brand New Eyes. This gap has been the longest break between albums for you, so do you feel that a new kind of pressure for the album?
Well, we never really went anywhere, but we needed to go away for a minute after Josh and Zac (Farro) left. The time we had was a good way to let the dust settle and sort of recharge ourselves. It definitely made us feel like we’re getting a second chance.
What are your influences or inspirations for the new album, in terms of both sound and lyrics?
We all listen to different types of music. We didn’t have a specific band that we listen to, so we kind of got together and come up with our own stuff and just played, no matter how weird or stupid it sounded (laughs).
With your new album you decided to go self-titled. Is it because you feel that this is the sound you’ve been trying to achieve with the band?
Hayley mentioned before that the songs in this new album remind us of why we got together as a band in the first place. With Brand New Eyes, it was mostly about the difficult times and the unhappiness we went through as a band. This album definitely defines Paramore in a sense that it’s created by a bunch of best friends who want to be in a band together. The songs are so much more positive and I think it’s a good statement of us sticking together as a band. We’re here to stay.
You’ll be performing for the second time in Malaysia this coming February. What do you remember most about Malaysia?
To be honest, we didn’t have a lot of free time the last time we were there, unfortunately. So we really hope to go out, explore the city, and try out the local food. I’m a big fan of spicy food so I definitely can’t wait to try that.
To wrap up this interview, what would you like to say to the fans in Malaysia?
We would like to thank everyone for being so supportive of Paramore and we really can’t wait to perform for you guys again. You’ve made us feel very welcomed, so we’re happy to be back.
Rock out with Paramore at Stadium Negara thanks to Tune Talk and BlackBerry on Sunday 17 February. Tickets are priced from RM150 and can be purchased via online at www.ticketpro.com.my. Get more on the band by visiting www.paramore.net.