Hayley Williams
[Photo via YouTube]

Hayley Williams is an incredible woman. The world couldn’t wait for Williams’ first solo music and she absolutely exceeded expectations last week with “Simmer.” It is the first single off her upcoming album Petals For Armor.

The Paramore singer now dropped the next single called “Leave It Alone” which she says is “a song about grief.” Check it out below.

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“Simmer” marked the first original music from Williams since Paramore ended the After Laughter cycle and retired “Misery Business” in September 2018. The band haven’t played together since, and not much was said about the future of Paramore until June 2019 when they posted a muted video. Nothing transpired from it, however, and Williams does regret leaving fans question the band’s future. They took to Instagram, sharing a year-end post reflecting on the band’s time together before clarifying it didn’t mean a breakup was in store.

Following the solo single’s release, Williams opened up on how time away from the spotlight and Paramore benefitted her creative process.

“I’m so ready and so incredibly humbled to get to share this project,” Williams said with the release of the song. “Making it was a scary, empowering experience. Some of my proudest moments as a lyricist happened while writing PETALS FOR ARMOR. And I was able to get my hands a little dirtier than usual when it came to instrumentation.”

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“I’m in a band with my favorite musicians so I never really feel the need to step into a role as a player when it comes to Paramore records. This project, however, benefited from a little bit of musical naïveté and rawness and so I experimented quite a bit more. I made this with some of the closest people to me. Their respective talents really shine bright throughout the record.

“I like to think we all make each other better and the result is something that sounds and feels exactly as I’d hoped it would. Now that it’s time to put it all out there, I can finally exhale. I’m excited to let people in to experience a different side of myself that I’ve only very recently become familiar with.”

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Well, with “Simmer” we saw that Williams’ was truly letting her emotive side show. In an Annie Mac BBC Radio 1 interview, she discussed the themes and ideas that led her to Petals For Armor. 

“I think, for me, it’s somewhat of a mantra to try and stay soft in a really, really hard world and feel pain and let all of it come to you and try and put out something that can redeem it all, even if it’s ugly at first, Willaims says. “The lyric is “wrap yourself in petals for armor” because I kept feeling like the way for me to protect myself best is to be vulnerable and be OK with having a lot of pain at certain times and also feeling a lot of joy at certain times.”

“As long as I’m staying soft to those things and I’m open to letting those things in and out of me then I actually can survive the world a lot easier than if I stay hard and with my fists up all the time.”

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Now, the 31-year old icon has shared something even more personal. In an interview with Zane Lowe for apple Music, Hayley Williams shares the story of her grandmother and how it influenced the new song “Leave It Alone.”

“It really sucks that you do have to dig through the dirtiest shit to find like the diamonds or something, you know,” Williams begins. “Like you’ve got to burn all of it off. My family went through something insane in the middle of… I’m working. I’m doing all this work on childhood stuff and traumas and I’m terrified of losing people obviously. And my Nana, who was my mom’s mother had this terrible fall and it was right after, it was the day after… Her and I share a birthday.”

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“She’s 50 years older than me, so she’s 81 now. The day after her 80th, my 30th, she fell like all the way down my mom’s stairs and head trauma. Like the kind of thing that we had said goodbye to her. Right? And in a weird twisted… The weirdest thing is that she got better, but it prolonged the grief because she’s not really here with us. She doesn’t really remember everything.”

“Thankfully she knows who I am, she knows who my mom is, but she really doesn’t. It was so tough and felt like there was a lot of death at the time. People that we knew, a lot of disease, like family friends and stuff. And I just thought like, what is the point of loving people? Like why? Even in the best case scenario is I fall in love, we have a life together and then we lose one or the other. It’s terrifying. The more you love, the more you stand to lose, but it’s like the more I let it… I mean, I struggle with it all the time.”

Watch a clip of the interview below.

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“Simmer” was the first video in a continuing storyline that now progresses through “Simmer Interlude” and Leave It Alone” Adorned with zip tie hairpieces, a flower petal forehead piece and scales, the surreal “Leave It Alone” video shows Hayley struggling to break free. It picks up right where “Simmer Interlude” leaves off.

 

Hayley Williams “Leave It Alone” Lyrics

Don’t nobody tell me that God don’t have a sense of humor
Cause now that I want to live
Well everybody around me is dying
Now that I finally want to live the ones I love are dying

Becoming friends with a noose that I made and I been trying to untie it
Make it into something useful or maybe hang it through a window pane
Turn it into a fire escape

It tastes so bitter on my tongue
The truth’s a killer
But I can’t leave it alone

You don’t remember my name somedays or that we’re related
Triggers my worry
Who else am I gonna lose before I am ready?
And who’s gonna lose me?

It tastes so bitter on my tongue
The truth’s a killer
But I can’t leave it alone

If you know love
Best prepare to grieve
Let it into your open heart and
Then prepare to let it leave

Hayley Willaims’ solo debut Petals For Armor will drop May 8 via Atlantic. Tell us what you think of “Leave It Alone” in the comments below!

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