Paramore still have a long road ahead of them, but with what we’ve seen so far, that road is going to keep getting bigger and bigger.
Yet another ongoing summer tour has left its mark upon Chicago, this time bringing the Honda Civic Tour, which has been around since 2001 aside from last year’s lapse, to the Charter One Pavilion. This year the tour is bringing along a varied lineup, including Kadawatha, New Found Glory, Tegan and Sara, as well as the headliner, Paramore.
Previous Honda Civic Tour alumni New Found Glory, known for their high-energy pop punk, filled up their 45-minute set with fan favorites such as “All Downhill From Here” and “Understatement,” however also mixed things up with a cover of “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer.
Following NFG’s pop punk anthems, darling twins Tegan and Sara slowed things down a bit playing a set full of emotionally heartfelt tracks such as “You Wouldn't Like Me” and “I Bet It Stung,” which translated quite well during the live performance.
Paramore kicked things off with “Ignorance,” which did its job at getting the crowd amped up, although proving it challenging to match Hayley’s own on stage energy, which throughout the show seemed never-ending. The vivacious frontwoman swiftly made her way across the stage from platform to monitor, outdoing the rest of the band in terms of energy, who did at times manage to keep their own such as when Josh and Jeremy performed their signature back-roll.
Halfway through the set, Hayley decided to slow things down a bit, leading the band off into a cover of Loretta Lynn's “You Ain't Woman Enough.” As the band originates from Tennessee, it was an apt nod to their home state’s country roots, a fact Hayley highlighted prior to the song by explaining how country music has always reminded them of back home when on the road.
After a brief stage change over, the band came out to a homely couch and floor lamp meant to signify a living room, and after getting comfortable started off an intimate acoustic version of “When It Rains,” which has been fine tuned and is a suitable take on the album’s recording. The band played two more songs during the acoustic mini-set, before returning to dashing across stage by breaking out into “crushcrushcrush.”
Halfway through the final song of their encore, “Misery Business,” Hayley picked out an unsuspecting fan to come up on stage, handing her a microphone to lead off the end of the song as a shower of confetti flew about through the air. It’s this kind of connection that has helped Paramore maintain their avid fan following. Having witnessed the band’s progress from playing 300 capacity venues, each year raising the capacity and refining their performance, the band has certainly shown its growth. They have maintained an ability to click with new fans and connect with pre-existing ones, regardless of the size of the venues they play. This could for sure be credited to Hayley’s on-stage charisma, and the chemistry the band members share with themselves and the fans. Paramore still have a long road ahead of them, but with what we’ve seen so far, that road is going to keep getting bigger and bigger.