Artist: Panic! At the Disco
Album: Death of a Bachelor
Since the release of their breakthrough single, “I Write Sins Not Tragedies,” Panic! At the Disco has been determined to turn heads, while experimenting with the stranger side of music. What they’ve been able to prove is that, though they continue to break new ground with each release, they always remain true to themselves as artists. Now, with 4 critically-acclaimed albums under their belt, a few line-up changes and a revitalized sound, we’re brought to this point in their history. Their 5th album, Death of a Bachelor, is an ode to Brendon Urie’s transformation from living the life of a care-free bachelor to falling in love with his wife who helped mold and shape him into the man he is today. Death of a Bachelor is Urie exposing his every shortcoming, giving the listener an inside look at who he used to be, leading up to who he is today. While he remains the only original member in the band, he’s not going to let that slow him down. This is a rebirth for the group, with the intent to prove that they’re not going anywhere.
While Urie described the sound that they had created on this album as closest to their debut album, A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out, no one expected what was brought to the table with “Hallelujah,” the album’s lead single. The video for this track, the lyrical content and overall vibe immediately make you think of the aforementioned “I Write Sins…” and could even be considered a sequel to the track. This song tells you that it’s okay to be a sinner, so long as you realize that there’s such thing as moderation. The video shows Urie fighting through Hell to reach a girl who, we can only assume, is his wife. As he described, this track definitely calls back to the odd sound from their debut album, yet has a fresh vibe to it, as well.
“Death of a Bachelor” was definitely another shocker, in terms of sound. This time, he croons as if he’s channeling his inner Frank Sinatra Jr. This track is all about Urie’s realization of his destructive lifestyle. The years of parties, sleeping around and general untethered behavior has really taken its toll and those around him have noticed. He wants nothing more than to leave it all behind but you can tell that he’s still struggling deeply with doing that.
“Victorious” is the track that likely had many fans scratching their heads. To be honest, when I heard it, I wasn’t completely sold but my wife enjoyed the hell out of it. After hearing it a few more times, it grew on me and I like it a lot more now. This track was written to show just how crazy he was, prior to meeting his wife but it’s also an ode to Panic! fans, saying that no matter what we do, we will be victorious! I can definitely see this being a crowd favorite when they start to play it live this Summer.
Perhaps the track that really sealed the deal for fans worldwide was “Emperor’s New Clothes.” This track is explosive, it features everything we’ve ever loved Panic! for and so much more. The video for it shows Urie slowly changing into a demon, destined to take the devil’s throne. Perhaps this is a metaphor for his desire to take over the world with his music? This track was clearly designed for two purposes: He was at his lowest and he desired to prove to his wife that he could/would change for her. The other reason would be to show fans that he knew that Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die wasn’t what he wanted it to be. Perhaps he feels he got caught up in the desire to remain relevant and lost sight of who he was as an artist. This one is going to be incredible to hear live, without a doubt, I can see a lot of crowd participation with this one.
“LA Devotee” is closer to the material we heard on Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die but it was done right. This track is poking fun at those who move to LA for all the wrong reasons. They buy the flashy cars, they indulge in the night life but LA isn’t a part of who they are. They’re devoted to a lifestyle that wasn’t meant for them and, in the end, that’s just what Brendon felt like. Beyond the title track, this track expresses exactly what this album is about. You’re having a blast living the life of fame, glamour and expensive possessions but you’re always yearning for something more. There has to be more than this. This is Brendon telling you that you’re better than that, don’t fall victim and become “just another LA devotee.”
As a last reflection of his party days, Brendon graced us with the final pre-release taste of the album “Don’t Threaten Me With a Good Time.” This track is him telling the story of just how crazy partying with him could be back in the day. Sex, drugs, waking up in strange places with strange people… he was the king of party and he embraced the title. This track is likely the basis for the album art which shows Urie passed out on the roof and a car crashed into a pool. How did these things happen? It’s likely that no one at the party could tell you but damn, did they have a good time! Want a good soundtrack for your next party? Throw this one on!
While Urie is at his most-exposed with Death of a Bachelor, he’s trying to tell you that it’s alright to have a good time. No matter what you do, you should do it to the fullest but remember that there are lines. Everyone makes mistakes, this is the ultimate sign of Urie maturing as an individual, as a writer and as an artist in general. Without a doubt, this is their best album to date and has more replay value than most albums I’ve heard in recent years. Be sure to pick it up on DCD2/Fueled By Ramen now! The band recently announced a co-headlining tour with Weezer and Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness which kicks off at The Woodlands, TX on June 10th! Be sure to pick up your tickets and celebrate this remarkable rebirth!
“Death of a Bachelor” (Official Music Video)
“Emperor’s New Clothes” (Official Music Video)
“Victorious” (Official Music Video)
Weezer/Panic! At the Disco Summer 2016 Tour (Tickets)
June 10 – The Woodlands, TX @ Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion
June 11 – Corpus Christi, TX @ Concrete Street Amphitheater*
June 12 – New Orleans, LA @ Bold Sphere Music at Champions Square
June 14 – Miami, FL @ Bayfront Park Amphitheater
June 15 – Tampa, FL @ Midflorida Credit Union Amphitheater
June 16 – Atlanta, GA @ Lakewood Amphitheatre
June 19 – Daniel Island, SC @ Volvo Cars Stadium
June 20 – Charlotte, NC @ PNC Music Pavilion
June 21 – Raleigh, NC @ Walnut Creek Amphitheater
June 22 – Virginia Beach, VA @ Veterans United Home Loans Amphitheater
June 24 – Bristow, VA @ Jiffy Lube Live
June 25 – Canandaigua, NY @ Constellation Brands – Marvin Sands PAC
June 26 – Scranton, PA @ Pavilion at Montage Mountain
June 28 – Gilford, NH @ Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion at Meadowbrook
June 30 – Wantagh, NY @ Nikon at Jones Beach Theater
July 01 – Mansfield, MA @ Xfinity Center
July 02 – Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center
July 05 – Camden, PA @ BB&T Pavilion
July 06 – Toronto, ON @ Molson Canadian Amphitheatre
July 08 – Clarkston, MI @ DTE Energy Music Theatre
July 09 – Milwaukee, WI @ Summerfest – Marcus Amphitheater
July 10 – Tinley Park, IL @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre
July 12 – Noblesville, IN @ Klipsch Music CenterJ
uly 13 – Nashville, TN @ Ascend Amphitheater
July 15 – Dallas, TX @ Gexa Energy Pavilion
July 16 – Oklahoma City, OK @ Zoo Amphitheater*
July 17 – Rogers, AR @ Walmart Arkansas Music Pavilion
July 19 – Maryland Heights, MO @ Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre
July 20 – Kansas City, MO @ Starlight Theatre
July 22 – Brandon, SD @ Badlands Motor Speedway*
July 23 – Council Bluffs, IA @ Harrah’s Hotel & Casino Council Bluffs – Stir Cove*
July 24 – Englewood, CO @ Fiddler’s Green Amphitheatre
July 26 – Salt Lake City, UT @ USANA Amphitheatre
July 28 – Burnaby, BC @ Festival Lawn at Deer Lake Park
July 29 – Redmond, WA @ Marymoor Park
July 30 – Troutdale, OR @ Edgefield
July 31 – Mountain View, CA @ Shoreline Amphitheatre*
August 02 – Phoenix, AZ @ AK-Chin Pavilion
August 03 – Chula Vista, CA @ Sleep Train Amphitheatre*
August 05 – Santa Barbara, CA @ Santa Barbara Bowl
August 06 – Irvine, CA @ Irvine Meadows Amphitheatre
* Weezer and Panic! At The Disco only