Panic at the disco explores new realms

Hannah Muenzberg

While Panic at the Disco fans are used to guys wearing eyeliner and circus imagery, the pop-punk band’s second album Pretty. Odd., shows a new side of the Las Vegas quartet. The band has dropped the exclamation point from its name and seemingly turned into a completely different band, one with well-crafted songs reminiscent of the Beatles accompanied by Beach Boys harmonies.

In fact, the only thing remaining from the band’s debut album A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out seems to be lead singer Brendon Urie’s distinctive vocals—and even these are much less frantic and are blended with new harmonies.

With its lazy strings and powerful horn arrangements, the new album’s first single, “Nine in the Afternoon,” has to be the most upbeat song about the end of the world: “Pickin’ up things we shouldn’t read/It looks like the end of history as we know/It’s just the end of the world/Back to the street where we began/Feeling as good as love, you could, you can.”

The album’s lyrics are drenched with words of change. In the song “That Green Gentleman (Things Have Changed),” from which the album’s title originates, the lyrics, “Things have changed for me/but that’s OK/I feel the same/I’m on my way,” promote positive change for the band as a whole. The largest musical change in comparison to A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out is the overall tempo of the songs, which has slowed down significantly.

In addition, the band has formed their own style while experimenting with new things. Their songs are generally peppier and much happier than previous hits, which may disappoint fans looking for something more edgy.

Several of the album’s tracks include big-band instruments. In “Do You Know What I’m Seeing,” the band uses strings instruments throughout the song as well as a harmonica at one point, adding a twang to the tune.

While Panic’s debut first album was filled with sarcasm, this time around the band is much more literal and straightforward. With a much more pop-filled sound, the album is more laid back and is fun to listen to. Overall, Pretty. Odd. is Pretty. Amazing.

Hannah Muenzber, staff writer