It’s 16 years since the Avalanches’ era-defining ‘Since I Left You’. How can a follow-up that took so long sound so meh?
The emo heroes are battling through their tour, but have they beaten the "internal issues" that nearly killed then? Carling Academy, Glasgow (May 12)
Fast-forward three months and they’re still standing – but when NME is ushered past the huge queue of fans to meet them this afternoon, we get the impression that they’re only just staying upright.“We’re all getting along really well,” comes the terse reply from Hayley Williams when we enquire as to the atmosphere on this tour. “We’re trying to keep ourselves entertained with Xbox and the Team America… DVD. We’re playing new material in the soundcheck as well; I haven’t really got into writing any lyrics yet, but I’ll just sit back and listen to these guys playing the music and it knocks me out. It sounds amazing.”
“This is the first tour I’ve taken my girlfriend on, too,” adds bassist Jeremy Davis. “Which makes it more pleasant for me, personally.”In fairness, this is a band who look more likely to fall asleep on each others’ shoulders than rip their heads off, but however knackered they appear offstage, on it, there’s scant sign of fatigue.
Tonight is something of a vindication for Paramore. Williams makes reference to the band's recent troubles, but brushes them aside with a cursory, "As you can see, there's nothing there." That may or may not be true, but as she zings around the stage you can't fault her effort. 'That's What You Get' segues into At The Drive-In's 'One-Armed Scissor', while during 'Crushcrushcrush' she informs one fan who's just handed her a tattered hat, "I really hope you don't have headlice, but if you do,it only brings us that bit closer."
The crowd react with as much fervour as if this really was the last gig Paramore will ever play, resulting in Williams declaring it "our favourite gig ever, ever." Nothing inspires a Scottish audience like overstatement, but there's a sliver of truth to it; whatever their troubles, this level of adulation would be missed by anyone. "We'll see you real soon," promises Williams as she bids adieu. After tonight, you feel it's one they'll keep.
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