Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die

Lindsay Lillig

Panic! At The Disco released its fourth album titled “Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die” on Oct. 8. Band veterans Brendon Urie (lead vocalist, guitarist and pianist) and Spencer Smith (drummer) recruited counterpart Dallon Weeks (bassist) in preparation for the album debut. With a new image and a new sound, this band is  clearly ready to be mainstreamed again—and rightfully so.

The first single  “Miss Jackson,” features female artist LOLO. The song sounds eerily similar to “My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark” by Fall Out Boy. The chanting and percussion, the vocals leading into each chorus and the overall structure of the two songs complement each other in nearly every aspect. Urie is a good friend of Pete Wentz (Fall Out Boy), so perhaps they collaborated on the singles for the two bands. The lyrics, however, do provide a contrast. The chorus of this song asks repeatedly, “Miss Jackson, are you nasty?”

The track “This Is Gospel” has the potential to be Panic! At The Disco’s greatest song to date. Urie sings all the verses in his soothing lower register, saving his dynamic higher register to send the chorus soaring. The lyrics are exquisite—phrases like “This is gospel for the fallen ones…assembling their philosophies from pieces of broken memories,” and “The gnashing teeth and criminal tongues conspire against the odds, but they haven’t seen the best of us yet.” The song ends with the syncopated rhythm of a heartbeat fading into silence.

The second most addictive track on the album is, ironically,  “Nicotine.” A soft series of synthetic chimes open the song before a guitar riff breaks in. This pattern reoccurs throughout the duration of the song. It is Urie’s enticing voice and libretto “I taste you on my lips and I can’t get rid of you” that ties all the elements of the track together.

“The End of All Things” is the last track on the album. This song is deeply reminiscent of “Hide and Seek” by Imogen Heap. The auto-tuned harmonies overlap each other creating a hypnotic melody. The simple verses with words of “Whether near or far, I am always yours,” will effortlessly entrance listeners.

Panic! At The Disco is not a typical pop rock band. These musicians have stepped up their game significantly. They have established a new, more mature sound for their genre that will not go unnoticed. Panic! will be performing at the Uptown Theater  this January. Tickets will be available starting Oct. 18.