Best known for rocking colourful hair and fringe while fronting pop-punk rock band Paramore, Hayley Williams dropped a surprise a solo project on Friday, titled Petals for Armor I, a day after announcing she has a debut album coming May 8.
The EP, which consists of five songs, gives fans a taste of what to expect in the full album. Williams dropped “Simmer” and “Leave It Alone,” in late January, which are accompanied by “Cinnamon,” “Creepin’” and “Sudden Desire” on the EP. In a statement, Williams said she there are a lot of themes covered in the album, and she wanted to separate the themes so listeners could digest the messages in each song, which might explain the lack of consistency throughout the EP.
Williams experiments with her songs, breaking out of the Paramore-mold. ‘Sudden Desire’ is punk at its roots, but has an unexpected rawness and vulnerability, while ‘Creepin’’ gives off Phoebe Bridgers-meets-The Pretty Reckless with dark, edgy tones and low-range vocals. Meanwhile, ‘Simmer’ is ghostly but soulful with pop undertones and a strong melody, while ‘Cinnamon’ is blue-sy, funk-filled experimental ode to her home. Lastly, in ‘Leave It Alone,’ Williams sings about death and uncertainty. It’s a beautiful ode to feeling alone and anxious, and the most personable on the EP.
Williams wears her heart on her sleeve, singing about all her anxieties, rage, and lust. Although there are a few hits on the track, the lack of consistency is problematic because the songs don’t connect. Perhaps there will be more a flow when the full album drops, but for now, it’s best to listen to the songs one at a time.
Petals For Armor I Time EP is out now to stream and purchase now