Thursday, October 17, 2013

Track of the Week: "Nicotine" by Panic! At the Disco

Panic! At the Disco's newest album just came out and it is incredible! I love that they are doing what they do best: switching up genres. AFYCSO--their first album--was kind of eclectic, Pretty. Odd was Beatles-influenced, Vices & Virtues was anthemic, a brief return to some of the elements from AFYCSO with the strings section from Pretty. Odd, and Too Rare to Live, To Rare to Die has bits of AFYCSO with hints of the Killers and Neon Trees sprinkled in it. All of the tracks are great, but the one that really stands out to me is "Nicotine," this week's track of the week.

It starts out with twinkling piano line, then the guitar/bass comes in, followed by the thudding drums. then, it returns to the keyboard with Brendon's vocals layered on top. The instrumentals switch in and out until they come all in for the chorus, which is bold, loud, and perfectly arranged. Dallon's bass lines are ridiculous; this is their first album where you can really hear the role the bass plays. In the past, the bass has been kind of hidden in the corner, overshadowed by guitars, drums, and the string sections. The fact that the strings are buried in the song is a wise choice, opting instead for the slightly more electric feeling; having the strings in the forefront would have been out of place and awkward.
The lyrics detail a relationship that the speaker knows is bad, but cannot stop returning to. He knows it is unhealthy, "worse than nicotine." Yet he finds himself unable to "get rid of" the other person. The topic is relatable, but Brendon's delivery is what makes them fit so perfectly with the track. He is hushed and vulnerable in the verses, while the chorus is his declaration to the world that he is in a bad place. Very well done.

So, check out that track and the rest of the album. You won't regret it.
Until next week,

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