PANIC! AT THE DISCO - 'Pray For the Wicked' (Album Review) (2024)

Table of Contents
As a long time fan of Panic! At The Disco, I Panic!ked at the initial announcement of this album. Following the band since their 2011 Vices & Virtues album, I’ve watched the band’s music develop and change over the past 7 years, incorporating new experimental styles and elements into their music to ensure that nothing would be boring or the same as before. However, I had a hunch that just like the albums that came before it, Pray For The Wicked would be just as phenomenal. Pray For The Wicked starts off with my personal favourite track on the album ‘(f*ck a) Silver Lining’.It starts off with a calm and slow intro until the strong vocals and brass accompaniment burst out. Thesong is upbeat and feel-good making it the perfect song to dance around to in your room with a hairbrush or sing along to in traffic. It’s chorus and post-chorus are catchy and repetitive both melodically and lyrically, making it easy for the song to be learnt in no time! Next in the lineup is the first song (and music video) that Panic! At The Disco had released ahead of the rest of the album on the 21st March: ‘Say Amen (Saturday Night)’. The release of this song had me so excited because I just knew the rest of the album would be upbeat and high-energy. The vocals and music slowly build up suspense as they start out slow and create a tension that explodes in the chorus. Vocalist Brendon Urie‘s vocals in this album show off his extensive range, reaching that incredibly high and impressive high note that would make Mariah Carey proud. This song is so groovy that it always feels like a Saturday night! ‘Hey Look Ma, I Made It’is the third song featured on Pray For The Wicked and just like ‘(f*ck a) Silver Lining’, it’s lyrics celebrate Panic!‘s success and embracing how far they’ve come from their humble beginnings as teenagers in 2004. The lyrics “Think I must be dreamin’ Wide awake and dreamin'”highlight the fact that Brendon‘s situation seams so surreal, it must be a dream. The music is relaxed with it’s mix of electronic sounds and strings in the beginning, with a loud brass and percussion filled chorus, celebrating the fact that he made it. Truly a feel good, celebration of hard work and dedication paying off! I had high, high hopesfor this next song ‘High Hopes‘,another track released before the whole album but definitely the song I find myself singing on a daily basis the most often. The presence of bright, upbeat bass accompaniment, which is a running theme in many of the songs in Pray For The Wicked, gets you so hyped up even before Brendon‘s vocals appear a few seconds later. He describes how his mother always told him to believe in himself and to do your own thing and he’ll succeed. This ties into the lyrics of ‘Hey Look Ma, I Made It’ where he embraces where he is thanks to his mum’s support. The next four songs in the album Pray For the Wicked are‘Roaring 20’s’,‘Dancing’s Not a Crime’, ‘One Of The Drunks’, and ‘The Overpass‘. All four centre around themes of being young and careless, such as finding your identity, partying carelessly and chasing love. I love the clear jazz musical influences for ‘Roaring 20’s’ which can be heard in the melodic line and the brass accompaniment and just listening to it transports me to a jazz music bar in the 20’s full of feathers and flapper dresses. ‘Dancing’s Not a Crime‘,and ‘One Of The Drunks‘ remind me of the process of a night out on the town. First you’re having a great time and dancing with people but you wanna dance with some eye candy you saw from across the room, but as you get tired the night winds down and gets more mellow, as represented by ‘One Of The Drunks‘.I must admit I got a small heart attack when‘The Overpass‘ came on, but its fast paced tempo was a clear contrast to the song prior, a good representation of the “Troubled love and high speed noise”. ‘King of the Clouds’begins a cappella with a three part harmony that blends perfectly together in key, giving you the light and airy vibe to parallel a cloud. The increase of his pitch on the lyric ‘lifted’in the chorus is the perfect detail that is typical of the band to include. The inclusion and then absence of accompaniment in the song for the first two beats of each bar give the song a slow swaying feeling that one would enjoy while relaxing. ‘Old Fashioned’reminisces on ones youth, how it is one of the best times of your life even though they were so long ago: “Dead and gone so long, seventeen so gone.”I really like the melody in the chorus because it resembles some of their older songs such as their 2009 single ‘New Perspective‘ and ‘Time To Dance‘from their 2004 album ‘A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out‘. I like that Brendon‘s vocals and vocal melodies within Panic! At The Discosongs are distinct that they’re easily associated with the band! To finish off the album is a track that is a stand-out track for me in this album as it is a beautiful piano and string acoustic arrangement with a sombre tone. ‘Dying in LA’ is a song reflective of the harshness of the reality of those who move LA to pursue their dreams only to end up unsuccessful. The simplicity of the accompaniment really highlight the raw and emotional lyrics that are being sung. After listening to the full Pray For The Wicked album, I would admit that this song is one of my favourites. To sum up my thoughts about this album, I just want to express how much I love the diversity of content that is contained in this one album and how many emotions it makes me feel in one run through. The vocals and talents of Brendon Urie never fail to amaze me and the release of this album was definitely the ‘cherry on top‘ of my week! Related Projects References

PANIC! AT THE DISCO – ‘Pray For the Wicked’ (Album Review)amnplify_writer2018-11-25T19:51:32+11:00

Reviewer: Amelia Torresan
Twitter

.PANIC! AT THE DISCO - 'Pray For the Wicked' (Album Review) (1)

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As a long time fan of Panic! At The Disco, I Panic!ked at the initial announcement of this album. Following the band since their 2011 Vices & Virtues album, I’ve watched the band’s music develop and change over the past 7 years, incorporating new experimental styles and elements into their music to ensure that nothing would be boring or the same as before. However, I had a hunch that just like the albums that came before it, Pray For The Wicked would be just as phenomenal.

.

PANIC! AT THE DISCO - 'Pray For the Wicked' (Album Review) (3)

Panic! At The Disco @ The Riverstage 31/01/17 // Photo: Rachel Long

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Pray For The Wicked starts off with my personal favourite track on the album ‘(f*ck a) Silver Lining’.It starts off with a calm and slow intro until the strong vocals and brass accompaniment burst out. Thesong is upbeat and feel-good making it the perfect song to dance around to in your room with a hairbrush or sing along to in traffic. It’s chorus and post-chorus are catchy and repetitive both melodically and lyrically, making it easy for the song to be learnt in no time!

Next in the lineup is the first song (and music video) that Panic! At The Disco had released ahead of the rest of the album on the 21st March: ‘Say Amen (Saturday Night)’. The release of this song had me so excited because I just knew the rest of the album would be upbeat and high-energy. The vocals and music slowly build up suspense as they start out slow and create a tension that explodes in the chorus. Vocalist Brendon Urie‘s vocals in this album show off his extensive range, reaching that incredibly high and impressive high note that would make Mariah Carey proud. This song is so groovy that it always feels like a Saturday night!

.

Panic! At The Disco @ The Riverstage 31/01/17 Photo: Rachel Long

.

‘Hey Look Ma, I Made It’is the third song featured on Pray For The Wicked and just like ‘(f*ck a) Silver Lining’, it’s lyrics celebrate Panic!‘s success and embracing how far they’ve come from their humble beginnings as teenagers in 2004. The lyrics “Think I must be dreamin’ Wide awake and dreamin'”highlight the fact that Brendon‘s situation seams so surreal, it must be a dream. The music is relaxed with it’s mix of electronic sounds and strings in the beginning, with a loud brass and percussion filled chorus, celebrating the fact that he made it. Truly a feel good, celebration of hard work and dedication paying off!

I had high, high hopesfor this next song High Hopes‘,another track released before the whole album but definitely the song I find myself singing on a daily basis the most often. The presence of bright, upbeat bass accompaniment, which is a running theme in many of the songs in Pray For The Wicked, gets you so hyped up even before Brendon‘s vocals appear a few seconds later. He describes how his mother always told him to believe in himself and to do your own thing and he’ll succeed. This ties into the lyrics of Hey Look Ma, I Made It’ where he embraces where he is thanks to his mum’s support.

.

Panic! At The Disco @ The Riverstage 31/01/17 Photo: Rachel Long

.

The next four songs in the album Pray For the Wicked are‘Roaring 20’s’,‘Dancing’s Not a Crime’, ‘One Of The Drunks’, and ‘The Overpass. All four centre around themes of being young and careless, such as finding your identity, partying carelessly and chasing love. I love the clear jazz musical influences for Roaring 20’s’ which can be heard in the melodic line and the brass accompaniment and just listening to it transports me to a jazz music bar in the 20’s full of feathers and flapper dresses.

Dancing’s Not a Crime‘,andOne Of The Drunks remind me of the process of a night out on the town. First you’re having a great time and dancing with people but you wanna dance with some eye candy you saw from across the room, but as you get tired the night winds down and gets more mellow, as represented by ‘One Of The Drunks‘.I must admit I got a small heart attack whenThe Overpass came on, but its fast paced tempo was a clear contrast to the song prior, a good representation of the “Troubled love and high speed noise”.

.

Panic! At The Disco @ The Riverstage 31/01/17 Photo: Rachel Long

.

‘King of the Clouds’begins a cappella with a three part harmony that blends perfectly together in key, giving you the light and airy vibe to parallel a cloud. The increase of his pitch on the lyric ‘lifted’in the chorus is the perfect detail that is typical of the band to include. The inclusion and then absence of accompaniment in the song for the first two beats of each bar give the song a slow swaying feeling that one would enjoy while relaxing.

Old Fashioned’reminisces on ones youth, how it is one of the best times of your life even though they were so long ago: “Dead and gone so long, seventeen so gone.”I really like the melody in the chorus because it resembles some of their older songs such as their 2009 singleNew Perspective and Time To Dancefrom their 2004 album A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out. I like that Brendon‘s vocals and vocal melodies within Panic! At The Discosongs are distinct that they’re easily associated with the band!

.

Panic! At The Disco @ The Riverstage 31/01/17 Photo: Rachel Long

.

To finish off the album is a track that is a stand-out track for me in this album as it is a beautiful piano and string acoustic arrangement with a sombre tone. ‘Dying in LA’ is a song reflective of the harshness of the reality of those who move LA to pursue their dreams only to end up unsuccessful. The simplicity of the accompaniment really highlight the raw and emotional lyrics that are being sung. After listening to the full Pray For The Wicked album, I would admit that this song is one of my favourites.

To sum up my thoughts about this album, I just want to express how much I love the diversity of content that is contained in this one album and how many emotions it makes me feel in one run through. The vocals and talents of Brendon Urie never fail to amaze me and the release of this album was definitely the ‘cherry on top‘ of my week!

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AMNPLIFY – CT

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