The Honda Civic Tour, headlined by Paramore, stopped in Phoenix last Wednesday night for a nearly sold-out show at the Dodge Theatre.
Prior to soundcheck we caught up with bassist Jeremy Davis and guitarists Josh Farro and Taylor York to check out some of their sensational basses and guitars, highlighted by Dennis Galuszka’s custom-built Fenders.
Farro, a true Tele guy at heart, ordered up a custom-built gold-top Telecaster and another Tele with a relic finish that Galuzka beat to hell to capture the essence of Rory Gallagher’s famously worn 1961 Fender Strat.
Photo by FotoBob
York, although also a big fan of Tele guitars, selected a pair of custom-built Jazzmaster guitars to best complete Paramore’s live sound. He’s also got a sweet Fender Starcaster that he came across while playing a show in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Photo by FotoBob
And then there’s Davis’ bass, the most challenging project for Galuszka since the Paramore bassist created a photoshop mockup that combined elements of a Jazz Bass and a Bass 6.
“I had to figure out how to give them the design he was looking for without compromising the tone,” said Galuszka. “So there were some challenges but we worked out a solution.”
Photo by FotoBob
Needless to say the guys have a hard time playing anything but their dream guitars these days, but we did see some other Fenders flying off the racks when hours later, following opening performances by Kadawatha, New Found Glory and Tegan & Sara, a backlit curtain that at first showed only their shadows finally dropped to reveal the Honda Civic Tour headliners.
The Nashville quartet kicked off its much-awaited appearance with Brand New Eyes debut single, “Ignorance,” complete with the dangling lights that appear in the song’s MTV VMA-nominated music video.
With her fire-engine red hair, yellow shirt decorated with a girls scout sash filled with badges, orange microphone and new black shoes that she said “made her feel like she could run faster,” singer Hayley Williams blazed across the stage for the majority of the 16-song set, punctuated by a lot of head banging and fist-pumping that energized the crowd.
Davis and York crisscrossed the stage with equal spunk, frequently joining in for the head banging. Late in the show, the bassist also soared over Farro for his signature bass flip.
Williams and crew eventually slowed their breakneck pace for an acoustic set that included a nod to their Nashville roots with a cover of Loretta Lynn’s “You Ain’t Woman Enough to Take my Man.” Then perched atop a couch between a seated Farro and York that gave off a living-room vibe, Williams showcased her powerful vocals on “Where the Lines Overlap” and “Misguided Ghosts.”
The punk-pop rockers exited the stage after their ballad hit, “The Only Exception,” returning after a few minutes of crowd pleas for an encore performance of “Brick by Boring Brick” and “Misery Business.”
Huge confetti explosions ended the Honda Civic Tour extravaganza at the Dodge. The summer-long tour wrapped up for good on Sunday night in Orange County, but the band will be headed overseas in a couple of weeks. Get their tour schedule here.
Stay tuned in the coming weeks for a Fender Vision video featuring Davis, Farro and York as they discuss and show off their Fender guitars.