Panic! At The Disco Risks It All With Death of a Bachelor

Stephanie Conlon

Brendon Urie, now the lone member of Panic! At the Disco, began his transition into more pop and synth based tunes back in 2013 with Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die! Keeping the same upbeat vibe, but with a newfound injection of nostalgia, Death of a Bachelor combines the best elements of both old and new Panic! At the Disco. With influences ranging from recent Fall Out Boy records to Frank Sinatra and Queen, the only way to describe this album is eclectic and suave.

Brendon Urie of Panic! At the Disco (Photo obtained via Facebook)
Brendon Urie of Panic! At the Disco (Photo obtained via Facebook)

“I’m just excited to show people this album because it’s so different,” Urie said in an interview with Upset Magazine. “I don’t know how to describe it. Someone asked me which of our previous albums is it most like, and I said the first album. At that moment in time, it was the most exciting shit we’d ever done. We’d never done anything remotely close to that before, and that’s how I feel now. That’s how it felt when I was writing this record.”

While the title track “Death of a Bachelor” is without a doubt the highlight of the record, there is never a dull moment. In the power ballad “Golden Days,” Urie demonstrates that the story telling skills that won him magazine covers and platinum records is still second to none and brings back some Latin influence circa A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out.
A brief second of silence between tracks separates the Spanish guitars from the Big Band bliss in “Crazy=Genius,” complete with swing drums and jazz horns. Even homage to pop legends the B-52’s is sampled throughout “Don’t Threaten Me with a Good Time.” If a dynamic record was the goal, Urie got a gold star.

Even though Death of a Bachelor is not quite the scandalous burlesque-punk that created Panic’s thriving fan base, it is far more mature than their last release, Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die!, which was essentially a synth 101 course. Electronic elements in this record are much more tasteful as if to prove that someone born and raise in Las Vegas is in fact capable of being subtle.

Overall, this record is very hit or miss. Listeners either completely buy into the nostalgia and catch the sprinkled in references to older tunes or are thoroughly confused by the exhausting leaps in style. Be sure to catch Panic! At the Disco this summer on tour with Weezer.