From A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out to Pretty. Odd., Vices & Virtues to Too Weird To Live, Too Rare To Die!, Panic! At the Disco fans have watched as this band has gone through a range of eclectic eras in both sound and style. Not only has their sound changed over the years, but so has their lineup. Of course there’s the infamous splitting of the band back in 2009, wherein Ryan Ross (original guitarist) and Jon Walker (original bassist) departed Panic in order to pursue their own separate creative route; thus, the band The Young Veins were born. This left two original members: lead singer, Brendon Urie, and drummer, Spencer Smith.
Not long after, the band adopted The Brobecks’ frontman Dallon Weekes to join Panic as their new bassist. Starting out as a temporary touring member in 2009, Weekes was later made a permanent addition to the group in 2010.
Fast forward to 2015, fans had their heart ripped out once again – Spencer Smith would be leaving the band after a decade of faithful musicianship. While it was easy to be distraught about this news, it was all in the name of good health and was made with the best intentions in mind.
And then there was one.
With Brendnon Urie being the only original member left of the pop-punk band, all wide, curious eyes were on him to see what his next move would be. Would he choose to leave the band? Would Urie choose to simply retire the name and continue a career as a solo artist? Fans took a collective sigh of relief at Urie’s answer: he would continue making music under his band’s namesake.
It’s come to be expected of Panic to completely change up their sound with every album they produce; that’s arguably one of the most intriguing, alluring things about them. With four studio albums under their belt (all of varying genres and tones) and only one original member left, one Dallon Weekes, and a whole lot of expectations to live up to, fans were on the edge of their seats with anticipation; what would Panic’s newest album bring to the table that their previous four haven’t thus far?
“It’s like Beyonce and Sinatra made a song together,” teased Brendon Urie, regarding the band’s newest single, “The Death of a Bachelor.” Upon hearing that little description, it’s easy to squint your eyes, scoff, and say there’s no way that’s what it sounds like.
That’s exactly what it sounds like.
On September 1, Pete Wentz premiered Panic’s new single on Beats 1 Radio. It was certainly a unique, one of a kind listening experience. If Panic! At the Disco were to actually have a consistent genre, it would be music-that-isn’t-like-anything-you’ve-heard-before.
Frank Sinatra, Urie writes, “has been a major player in the soundtrack of my life. So it’s only right that I return the favor and/or pay it forward.” If readers are unsure of his devotion to the singer, it should be noted he has a tattoo of Sinatra’s face on his forearm. Dedication.
During an interview with Gigwise, he was asked how, more specifically, he would describe the character of his newest album. “It’s like if a crooner smoked a lot of weed and screamed at the top of his lungs,” replied the ever-eccentric Urie (he’s nothing if not utterly, uniquely descriptive). In addition to Urie’s head-tilting-but-most-certainly-accurate summation, there have also been little pieces of information flitting around the internet: that it will retain some of the more electronic sounds found in Too Weird To Live., and that it will even contain some sound and feel familiar to the band’s debut album, A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out. What that means, exactly, fans will have to wait and see.
Now that listeners have a little taste of Panic’s newest sound, when can they expect the new album to drop?
As Brendon Urie recently told Gigwise, “Hopefully by the end of this year, but really that’s up to the label. I have no idea when they want to put it out. I’m saying end of this year, hoping that I force their hand and make them ******* put it out. I really have no idea.” Beyond that, it should be noted that he told Alternative Press he has “10 or 11 songs written that are huge candidates,” but there has yet to be word on whether or not “The Death of a Bachelor” is among them.
In the meantime, Panic released another new single earlier this year, “Hallelujah,” which was also met with wide enthusiasm and love. Until the yet-to-be-named album release date is officially announced, Panic! At the Disco fans can rest easy knowing they have “Hallelujah” and “The Death of a Bachelor” to listen to excessively (to the point where you click on iTunes and realize you’ve listened to the same song 200 times in a row and it is completely fine.
Lauren Detweiler is a second-year student majoring in English. She can be reached at LD838069@wcupa.edu