Longtime Paramore leader Hayley Williams recently announced her solo debut Petals For Armor, and both of the early singles, “Simmer” and “Leave It Alone,” have been bangers. Today, Williams was a guest in BBC Radio 1’s Live Lounge, and in keeping with Live Lounge tradition, she covered one of her contemporaries live-in-studio. In this case, Williams took on another recent single from another extremely gifted pop singer: Dua Lipa’s “Don’t Start Now.”
Dua Lipa has her own new-album plans; she’ll release the sophomore LP Future Nostalgia this spring. She released the early single “Don’t Start Now” near the end of last year, and it’s a cathartic, house-influenced dance-pop jam about confronting a pining ex. In their Live Lounge performance, Williams and her band reworked “Don’t Start Now” completely, removing all the house elements and transforming it into a diffuse and oddly funky soul-pop sort of thing. That looks pretty bad when I type it out, but it’s cool. Williams gets across the pent-up frustration of the song in ways that Lipa’s chilly original never even attempted.
Talking the the BBC’s Clara Amfo, Williams says that she and her band switched the song up so that they can play it during live shows, and that she’s hoping Lipa doesn’t mind. Watch the performance below.
Petals For Armor is out 5/8 on Atlantic.