Once upon a time, I was 14 and obsessed with Paramore. Then I grew up, and so did they. Now, former Paramore drummer Zac Farro is making music that I can once again obsess over.
When I saw this show listed on The Emerald Lounge’s calendar, I wasn’t completely sold. I didn’t know any of Canon Blue’s music, and I’d never heard of Halfnoise. But I’d seen Paper Route back in 2009 when they toured with Paramore (yes, the obsession recently ended. You caught me.), so I knew they were talented live performers. So I decided to go.
Then, I figured I should try and get in touch with this mysterious Halfnoise group for an interview. At the time, I couldn’t find a real website, so Wikipedia was my best source of information. My heart started beating faster. Zac. F-ing. Farro.
Now, it wouldn’t have been that big of a deal, but I knew how big the Emerald Lounge was. I was about to be in a tiny venue with someone I’d seen play (and sell out) arenas.
I do not fangirl in the presence of the object of my fangirling. It’s pretty much my No. 1 rule. I have to try to be as professional as possible, so that it doesn’t get weird. But you know what? I hold Halfnoise, specifically Zac Farro, responsible for the fangirling that took place that night because the music is just too good. Too good.
Because my friend and moral support Shonie is the best, I asked Zac to let us interview him, and he said yes. Talking with him, I realized that I think he severely underestimates how popular his music could actually be if it got into the right set of headphones. I am smitten with Halfnoise.
Paper Route was really great too. Despite their technical difficulties, they put on an excellent show, and I definitely danced around. Lead singer J.T. Daly has quite the stage presence, and entertained the crowd not only with his performance, but also with his quirky banter, including a story about getting arrested in Germany. I was also able to sit down with Daly after the show for a brief interview.
I feel really lucky to have seen these bands in such a small, intimate setting. I enjoyed Paper Route’s set at the Emerald Lounge much more than I did at the Norva back in 2009, and I think that’s largely because I was literally and figuratively closer to the music. (That, and at the Paramore show, I’d been waiting outside since…well, I don’t want to admit how long I’d been there, but it was a long time, and I was just ready for them. And I was still in my ‘opening bands suck’ phase.)
REGARDLESS, this show was absolutely amazing, and I left repeating, “That was awesome.” That’s how you know it’s good.