I’m about to do something I have never done before. It’s strange and new to me. Will I do a good job, I don’t know. But I sure hope so.
This is my first time doing an album review, and I really want to be special. Get some dark Belgian chocolate and some sweet French wine. With Marvin Gaye playing in the background, you know? And of course my first time has to be with someone I truly adore. A band I adore, that is. So here it is, give it up for none other than…
PANIC! AT THE DISCO
Why won’t Lady Gaga applaud, gaddamit.
So who is Panic! at the Disco? And why on earth did they pick such a peculiar name? Well Panic! is your typical American pop punk band, just like Fall Out Boy. Has a lead singer, a bassist, a guitarist, a drummer… oh wait, it actually has only one member. That’s the frontman and lead vocalist of the band, Brendon Urie. What happened to the other members you ask? I’ll tell you about that later. But I don’t think it’s because they hated Brendon. Is that even possible?
Not so much of your average rock band now.
Before we get into their new album, let me give you a bit of our history. I first bumped into Panic! through their 2015 release Victorious. One day I saw its video on YouTube and since I like discovering new music, I went ahead and watched it. After Victorious, I began checking out their other music videos that were surprisingly creepy and weird. I simply couldn’t understand half of what Brendon was saying. It’s like he was singing in a different language that resembles English.
Then one day I found a “Teens react to Panic at the disco” video on YouTube that answered many of my questions. From the 4 minutes, I got to learn so much more about the band and its music. One hardcore fan praised Brendon for having the voice of a god. And that he has one of the widest vocal ranges ever -he hits the high notes just as well as the low ones. Now I don’t think I’ve heard a god sing, but I was willing to find out.
Soon after I also discovered that he was popular Viner as documented in this vine compilation. From his hilarious Vines, I learnt that he’s a dog person, can imitate a hardcore rock artiste, and he raps too. I think that is the exact moment that my crush began. The only unfortunate fact about him, is that he has a wife. But married or not, it is highly unlikely we would ever date so allow me to crush, kay?
Panic! started as a four-man band in 2004, and they have released five albums. One interesting fact about them is that each album has a different sound from the last. However, their evolving musical style is also responsible for the departure of the other members over the years.
Death Of A Bachelor is the band’s fifth and latest album – and the first one that Brendon did as a solo act. Released in early 2016, it’s the band’s first album to ever hit no 1 on Billboard 200 albums (take that former bandmates). The 28 year old co-wrote all the songs, and played most of the instruments in the album too. Mahn, maybe this is a god.
When I learnt of
their his new album, I wasted no time in getting it. Woke up one day and listened to it in the morning bus. The album is a grand mixture of rock and jazz that starts off with the triumphant single “Victorious”. It includes mellow songs like “House of Memories” as well as loud ones like “Emperor’s New Clothes”. In the 11 tracks, he sings about crazy parties and lost relationships in his usual deep complicated lyrics. This album basically signifies his departure from the single life as a bachelor.
For the first Panic! album I listened to, I was thoroughly impressed by the powerful instrumentation and Brendon’s vocal talent. It is true entertainment for any rock fan. The album perfectly ends softly with “Impossible Year”, a ballad that seems to thank you for listening, as well as saying goodbye.
In my first listen -because I have heard it one too many times- I immediately identified my favorites, ” Victorious” being one of them. The gospel like “Hallelujah” also took a spot in my little heart. But don’t be fooled, this song has little do with the Gospel. And of course the title track, which has to be my favorite song in the album. Let me tell you why.
Death of a Bachelor takes me back to the 50s, to an era in which I did not even exist. All from it’s amazing instrument-filled production to Urie’s rich flamboyant voice. You might think he a reincarnated Frank Sinatra. If you don’t know who Sinatra is, well he was a great American singer and actor who ruled the 1900s with his immense talent. He made a lot of jazz music that I still enjoy to date. And Brendon is a such a huge fan that the song was inspired by him. And Beyonce too.
I have to admit this is one of the most addicting songs I have ever listened to. There was a time I was so addicted that I could not go a day without listening to it. Not just once, but at least five times. It was the first song I listened to when I woke up, and the last one before I fell asleep. As it would turn out I wasn’t alone.
According to YouTube comments under the video, other fans were going through the same thing. And so I let my unhealthy obsession run its course, even though it felt like it would never end. Every time the song came to mind I just had to sing it out loud or replay the song, otherwise I might have gone mad. Don’t worry I am okay now, fully recovered without the help of therapy. But if you play this song in front of me today, I will still sing loudly word to word, from start to finish.
Being my favorite single, I just have to share it with you guys. It has a black and white video (how classy) in which the rockstar performs all alone on a stage with no audience. Except for the camera guys of course. It’s as if he’s saying “I don’t need them to be great. I’m already a star!”
Then the he starts off the Sinatra-like masterpiece with “Do I look lonely? I see the shadows on my face…”. No Brendon. You look hot! (suppresses the fan girl in me).
And when you finally get addicted to Death of a Bachelor let me know, kay?
So ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the stage, the one, the only … Brendon Urie!
Err, I mean…. PANIC! AT THE DISCO