Review By Casey Wolfe
With the release of their latest album, Pray for the Wicked, Panic! at the Disco proves that the evolution of a band’s signature sound does not always spell disaster. Panic! at the Disco has always been a step ahead of their genre ever since their inception, and their latest release is no different.
First on the album is a track titled rather daringly, “(F*** A) Silver Lining,” which has almost every element of a pop song. From an authentically upbeat rhythm and melody to a harmonized vocal track, Panic! starts out strong. It’s a bold move to come out swinging with a song full of profane language that is traditionally forbidden in pop music, but longtime listeners should expect nothing less.
Following is “Say Amen (Saturday Night),” the track where Panic! drew the album title from. Lyrics like, “Swear to God I aint never gonna repent, Mama can I get another Amen,” empower the already heavily charged track.
“Roaring 20s” is the next notable track on the album. Here, Panic! throws it back by channeling a little taste of A Fever you Can’t Sweat Out with the modernized jazzy vibe. The rhythm and backing instrumentals scream swing club, if swing clubs were still a thing in 2018.
“The Overpass” begins as if it were a backing track to a chase scene in an action movie. It captures the sound of suspense accurately and carries it through the entire track, even while changing pace in the last verse.
“So pour out some liquor, make in an old fashioned, remember your youth and all that you do, the plank and the passion,” starts what sounds like the anthem of the album, “Old Fashioned.” Strong vocals and long notes strengthen the song, making it a stand-out track on a stand-out album.
Ending the album on a softer note, “Dying in LA” drops the electronics and effects in favor of raw vocals and a piano track. It’s unexpectedly soothing after an album filled with such high energy songs. Even though it takes a softer approach, the song still builds up until the last note, but with a more natural style.
Panic! At the Disco proves through Pray for the Wicked that artists can evolve without changing who they are or lessening the quality of their product. While it’s certainly different than what they have produced in the past, this album is a quality compilation that strays only just enough to keep current listeners coming back while showing new ones exactly what they have to offer.
Top tracks: “Roaring 20′s”, “Dying in LA,” “Old Fashioned”