Scottrade Center sent into ‘Panic!’

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Scottrade Center sent into ‘Panic!’

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With a huge and enthralled crowd in attendance, Panic! at the Disco performed at the Scottrade Center Wednesday night with lead singer and frontman Brendon Urie at the helm. The tour began after the 2016 release of their newest album, “Death of a Bachelor,” which mixes the familiar flurry of lyrics from past albums with a new, vibrant sound.

Urie, the lead creative influence on the newest album, filled “Death of a Bachelor” with personal meaning. The single of the same name explicitly clues listeners in to its meaning, a reference to Urie’s recent marriage and, thusly, the “death” of his existence as a bachelor. The album also reflects the transformation of the group—of which Urie is the only original member—as it takes a pop-rock tone with a more synthesized feel. Basically, “Death of a Bachelor” has all the energy of their prior work with a more focused energy

After a live countdown reached zero on the flatscreens scattered above the stage, is was time for Panic! at the Disco to start what would be an amazing set. Opening with “Don’t Treaten Me with a Good Time,” Urie—who, it should be noted, was sporting a cheetah-print jacket—and the band had energy to spare. While sections of the music video played across the screens, Urie danced with a surprising degree of smoothness given the tight leathery-ness of his pants. “Don’t Treaten Me with a Good Time” was quickly followed up by “LA Devotee,” an upbeat ode to Hollywood culture and then came a jump into Panic! past with “Ready to Go.” As the night progressed and more and more of the newest album’s songs were played, suddenly a curve ball was thrown: a medley of some of their oldies—like “Better If You Do” and “The Only Difference Between Martyrdom and Suicide is Press Coverage” (from their way-too-long-song-title phase).

Though its membership has changed since its creation, Panic! at the Disco’s music has still somehow managed to maintain the same degree of quality for over a decade. With five studio albums released at intervals since 2005, the sound and dynamic have developed continuously. While “Death of a Bachelor” was the main focus of the show, Panic! didn’t shy away from featuring their older material such as “The Ballad of Mona Lisa” from their third studio album. This album, “Vices & Virtues,” returned to the type of sound that first made them popular after the departure taken in “Pretty. Odd.,” an album in stark contrast to the rest of their discography with its melodic, melancholy sound. “Nine in the Afternoon,” a favorite from this album, was performed complete with Brendon Urie serenely playing the piano.

At about the halfway point of the hour and a half long show, Brendon disappeared from the main stage only to reappear on a stage in the middle of the crowd seated at a glittering piano. There, he performed a ballad-like rendition of “This is Gospel” with an aching layer of emotion palpable in the air. Once that song finished, Urie began the courageous task of wading through the crowd back to the main stage all the while singing the song “Death of a Bachelor” and hugging those fans lucky enough to be in his way. The adoration the crowd felt toward him was tangible.

This adoration was also reflected later in the night. As Urie belted out “Girls/ Girls/Boys,” an LGBTQ+ anthem, the faces of famous LGBTQ+ people filled the screens behind him—in the end, coming together to form one giant rainbow flag. In a beautiful display of solidarity during this song, the crowd held up construction paper hearts in front of the lights on their phones, creating a mosaic of color in the audience. Urie commented after the song concluded that the idea of the hearts was entirely fan generated— “I love you very much,” he exclaimed.

Urie didn’t limit himself to just Panic!’s songs. He covered “Bohemian Rhapsody,” which has become a staple of his tours, as well as “Movin’ Up” by Billy Joel whom, Urie described as one of his musical idols. Later in the night, Urie also migrated to the drum set to accompany a medley of “24K Magic” by Bruno Mars and “Bitch Better have my Money” by Rihanna in a display of his extremely varied musical talent.

In fact, to say he is talented is a terrible, terrible understatement. Urie wasted no time in showing off his amazing range as he jumped octaves right and left. In another life perhaps he may have been an opera singer. Te crowd just about lost its collective mind when Urie hit the high B-flat in the middle of “Bohemian Rhapsody,” but his versatile falsetto made an appearance in nearly every song. Tough “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (which, yes, they did play) is perhaps their most widely known song, Panic! is far more than an emo band of yesteryear. Just as the band members have evolved, so has their sound. While “A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out,” their first album and cult classic, sits at the top of the scene-kid list of favorites, the band didn’t allow one genre to become their only MO. So, if the last time you listened to Panic! at the Disco was in 2005 when guyliner was a trending topic, it’s time to rectify the situation and let “Death of a Bachelor” wow your eardrums. Tis is the one time when “panicking” is exactly what everyone should do.