Pray For The Wicked – Album Review

Pray For The Wicked - Album Review

Picture by Shruthi Kumar

By Shruthi Kumar, Staff Writer

Expecting a release from Panic! At The Disco is a common occurrence considering the band usually takes up to a year to release new songs. Lead singer Brendon Urie teased us with two singles in March, ‘Silver Lining’ and ‘Say Amen.’ But the release of his new album, ‘Pray for the Wicked’ has definitely captured the attention of fans. To see what the rave was all about, I went back to my emo-freshman days and listened to the latest album.

1. Silver Lining

Urie definitely kickstarted the album with this song. The song preaches a breezy, vibrant message, encouraging the audience to reach a little bit more for that silver lining. The instrumentals have a vintage feel to them, almost like a song from the 80’s. As for the complexity of the lyrics, this song is mediocre at best. But, that definitely does not take away from the feel of the song. ‘Silver Lining’ is quirky and fun, and the perfect song choice for those unstoppable moments we all have.

2. Say Amen

‘Say Amen’ is a trip back to the old stylings of Panic! At The Disco. The song heavily resembles singles from the band’s previous albums, like ‘House of Memories’ from the album ‘Death of a Bachelor.’ However, this song is perfectly sinister to get a shiver running down your spine. The song itself has a few spooky Halloween connotations, and the instrumentals definitely complement that feeling. It isn’t anything new or special, but the chorus is catchy and guaranteed to get caught in your head.

3. Hey Look Ma, I Made It

This song is primarily composed of an electro synth, a bit different from the band’s usual music, but refreshing nevertheless. Urie’s vocals shine against the background, and his message comes across loud and clear: he’s celebrating his accomplishments with a trumpet synth to accompany the boisterous statement. 

4. High Hopes

As the title suggests, Urie definitely has high hopes. In this song, the 31-year-old talks about his history, his obstacles, and how his mother was an encouraging force in his life. Again, such a victory song isn’t unusual for Urie, seeing how the most popular song in the album ‘Death of a Bachelor’ was ‘Victorious,’ but his new notes are a welcome addition to the perky album

5. Roaring 20’s

Following the band’s history of producing odd, quirky music, ‘Roaring 20’s’ does not disappoint. Describing somewhat of a nightmarish situation, Urie channels the twenties in this upbeat, mysterious song. The crescendo that Urie is able to hit is definitely worth it, and fans are always left amazed at the singer’s vocal capacity.

6. Dancing’s Not A Crime

He’s right, dancing’s not a crime! Following the trend of loose, carefree music, the message behind ‘Dancing’s Not A Crime’ is clear: live a little! Despite the very obvious grammar typo in the title, this song is definitely a guarantee to get the audience’s foot tapping and head bobbing.

7. One of the Drunks

Urie touches upon darker subjects with this song, describing a lifestyle completely ruled by the bottle. The theme of uncertainty from a life with no association to anything resonates painfully throughout the song, and the soft, melodious crooning definitely enunciates the feelings of despair.

8. The Overpass

Urie branches out once again, this time to touch on the genre of electro-swing! The vacillating sounds and trumpets definitely accentuate Urie’s late night call to a lover. Although the lyrics don’t seem to make much sense, ‘The Overpass’ is a fun song to simply listen to.  

9. King of the Clouds

This song experiments with a faster lyric flow accompanied by a slower beat. The song almost has a jazzy tune, slow and simple. There is no rush with this song, and Urie definitely marks his territory as ‘King of the Clouds.’ Only after a few times listening, does this song become familiar and more enjoyable to listen to.

10. Old Fashioned

‘Old Fashioned’ is definitely Imagine Dragons meats Odd Chap. The song combines odd riffs and combinations of notes, and the combination of lyrics seems eerily similar to the lyric beats of ‘Thunder.’ Of course, Urie puts his own spin on the song, but ‘Old Fashioned’ isn’t really memorable unless one’s into awkward music changes.

11. Dying in LA

Urie once again takes the attention back to LA. In his previous album, ‘LA Devotee’ was a preppy, bubbly song about forbidden lovers. Despite having the same place as inspiration, ‘Dying In LA’ is a mournful tune, lamenting worries and misfortunes. The song is comparable to ‘Impossible Year,’  and like the last three tracks of the album, isn’t that memorable.