Last week Hayley Williams began to let us into her world, revealing her Petals For Armor I EP. As she released the first real look into her solo project, the Paramore vocalist talked with RADIO.COM about the meaning behind the title, what this means for the band, and much more.
“The title comes from a lyric in ‘Simmer,’ in the bridge. Which sort of happened in real time as I was recording the song,” Williams shares in the exclusive interview above. Working through it and scratching down notes, “wrap yourself in petals for armor” came out in an almost out-of-body way. “It felt like it came from somewhere else, like it didn’t really come from me. I didn’t mean to write it, it just kind of happened and it felt so right.”
The process was different for Hayley Williams, and part of why she knew that this album was something outside of her normal flow with her longtime family of Paramore. “I’m still kind of shocked that a full album came out,” Hayley admits. “I actually really thought this was just gonna be for me.”
Approaching the music different than Williams does in Paramore took the project from two songs she was proud of, to something much more expansive. Rather than write over music from her bandmates, the lyrics led the way and helped Petals For Armor to become fully realized. It’s definitely a creative detour for Hayley Williams, but there’s still plenty of Paramore on the way.
“There will be more Paramore shows,” she smiles, noting that these songs belong in a separate place than that of the beloved band. “I was talking to the guys about this just the other day, because we’re finishing mixing the record right now in a space in LA. And Zac rents one room and me and Taylor in the other space doing this project,” she explains. Taylor York from the band is working with Hayley on Petals For Armor as drummer Zac Farro works on another project down the hall, all sharing the same bathroom and ultimately more time.
“He’s like, ‘man I see you guys more in LA than I did back home in Nashville.’ I’m like, ‘I know. We need to do this more this is ridiculous.’ I think there’s already moments where we find ourselves fantasizing about the next Paramore project and kind of have to stop ourselves, because everyone’s so busy working on s*** right now.”
“I guess I feel very safe. I feel like I don’t really need to bring Paramore into this and be like, ‘hey remember me I’m in Paramore,’ because in about 5 minutes I’m gonna be back with Paramore. The love of my life is Paramore and those are my best friends too.”
They aren’t far away as you can see, some on the record and some just down the hall. “I feel like my creative life began because I met them. I wouldn’t really know what to do if I did something entirely without them because I don’t think there’s a bigger fan on this earth than me, of them.”
Petals For Armor I is now available everywhere. The full album arrives on May 8.