Paramore singer Hayley Williams recently compared her band to Metallica in a message celebrating the 12th anniversary of Paramore’s 2009 album, Brand New Eyes.
Released that year on Sept. 29, Brand New Eyes arrived at time when Paramore, then encountering a surge of success that was their biggest yet, were undergoing a difficult period of conflict between band members. The circumstances led to guitarist Josh Farro and drummer Zac Farro leaving the emo-indebted pop-rock group the following year. (Zac returned to the band in 2017.)
Likely thinking of that while looking back on Brand New Eyes this week, Williams suggested the album represents Paramore’s Some Kind of Monster period.
Metallica: Some Kind of Monster is the 2004 documentary that shows the heavy metal legends’ interpersonal challenges while making their 2003 album, St. Anger, amid a rehab stint for singer-guitarist James Hetfield and a search for a new bassist — they would end up selecting bass player Robert Trujillo, who remains in Metallica today.
On Tuesday (Sept. 12), Paramore tweeted an inset image of the back cover artwork for Brand New Eyes and said, “12 years ago today we were obviously mad as hell at each other. thank yall for the grace.”
Retweeting it, Williams added, “this was our ‘some kind of monster.'”
While she could have conveyed that idea by saying it was their St. Anger, the parallel with Metallica’s turmoil as portrayed in Some Kind of Monster makes a better analogy for the strife Paramore experienced.
Williams and Farro, who were in a romantic relationship with each other before Brand New Eyes, wrote the bulk of the album together after they split as a couple.
Metallica obviously weren’t experiencing that exact kind of hardship while recording St. Anger, but, as seen in the film, the kinship between the metal band’s members was certainly strained.
Clearly, Williams can relate.
“A large majority of those [Brand New Eyes] songs have to do with the relationship we had,” the Paramore singer said in 2011 of her and Josh. “It was really hard because we were friends, and then going through a breakup and going through any kind of tension as a band really affected all the lyrics.”
After Paramore announced they had parted ways with the Farro brothers, Josh called the group a “manufactured product” in a statement. He further claimed Williams was the only one signed to their recording contract and that they had started Paramore only after Williams was first offered a solo deal.
“The management then decided to build our band up the grassroots route,” Josh continued. “They put Hayley on Fueled by Ramen, not making it known she was signed to Atlantic [Records] as well. All the while, we still questioned whether or not we were an actual band.”
While they no longer work together, Williams and Josh have a current hit — each are credited as co-writers on pop star Olivia Rodrigo’s recent single “Good 4 U.” However, the acknowledgments may only be due to the song’s sonic nods to Paramore’s “Misery Business.”
Last year, after Josh reportedly correlated homosexuality with pedophilia in a Facebook comment, Williams said, “there’s a reason there are only 3 people left in [Paramore]. surprise, haters, it ain’t cause of me.”