The cover of Paramore’s first CD, All We Know is Falling, offers a serene picture of a red couch. At first glance, it seems so comfortable and inviting, and yet from another view it looks plain, empty, and utterly forgettable. This cover sets the scene for a CD that is neither good nor bad. The only thing I can say is listening to it was a lackluster experience.
As I popped the CD in my player and poised my ear in so I could listen intently, I immediately heard strong instrumentals. I am not disputing the talent of this bunch because for a group of such young band members I could see them all growing immensely as artists. For example, the band’s drummer, Zac Farro is just 15 and is posed to have a wonderful career in the music business if he wants it. Likewise, the bassist and lead guitarist, Josh Farro and Jeremy Davis are equally talented.
There were moments, when I was listening to tracks like "Emergency" and "Pressure" I got the vibe of the similar sounding, Goo Goo Dolls who I do enjoy listening to on occasion. I also found there was something lacking… something I could not figure out until the third time I listened through the CD.
The singer of the group, Hayley Williams, is just 17 years old. Even thought she is already showing talent in her vocals, I have to say I felt her voice was out of place. As I listened to many songs, such as, "All We Know" and "Never Let This Go", I was reminded of an orchestral piece that needed no vocals.
This may or may not be true, but the fact is that Hayley’s voice, while teeming with potential, needs the strength to match the force of the band behind her. The vibe I got from Hayley was that of a ballad singer (think Amy Lee of Evanescence) while the band behind her was alternative (think Simple Plan).
When it comes to the music, "Whoa", was my least favorite track. Reminiscent of an emo song gone wrong, it just struck the wrong cord in me. However, I can say that it was the only track on All We Know is Falling that I truly disliked. The others, while unmemorable, were not interesting enough to make me want to turn off the CD. They just seemed to blend in to my day and were not enough to make me want to stop and listen had I been doing something else.
There are ten songs on the All We Know is Falling CD and for a freshman try it wasn’t a horrible one. I have heard better, but in my opinion, this wasn't the worst album on the planet either.
Paramore is a young band, and because of this, they appeal to a certain audience. However, I feel that most people who have already gotten through the angst-ridden trials and tribulations of teenage love gone wrong will not find a place in their heart for this band.
Paramore has the possibility and the talent to do great things. It just was not happening on this particular album. The songs felt so similar that they all seemed to blend into one. Occasionally, one would jump out and make me take notice, but usually that was not the case. It was just one song after another that could have been a large orchestral piece broken up between sets.
The producer of this CD is a company called Fueled by Ramen. If you are familiar with bands such as, Panic! At the Disco and Fall Out Boy then you may recognize the name. All the bands on this label I have heard tend to be unique in some way and fall under the alternative or punk categories. Sadly, I must say that if you purchase this CD hoping to find Fueled by Ramen greatness you will be disappointed.
Paramore was a miss with All We Know is Falling, but bands are capable of change. Don’t write them off completely just yet. Who knows, they may end up surprising us someday. The talent is there. They just need to work out the kinks.