Hidden Gems: Panic! At The Disco – Pretty. Odd.

Don’t run away! It’s a lot better than you think!

If you were to tell me six years ago, when Panic! At the Disco made it big on MTV with “I Write Sins Not Tragedies”, that I would be comparing them to The Beatles I would have laughed and told you to shut up.  Well back then they were just another emo band, pretty Fall Out Boy rip offs at best, making emo music for all the tweens out there.  But three years later they reinvented themselves, putting on their Sgt. Pepper suits and coming out with Pretty. Odd. This is an album no “serious” fan of “good” music likes, but they should because this band sounds a lot better ripping off The Beatles than Fall Out Boy.

Though the Sgt. Peppers influence is obvious, the music actually sounds more like Magical Mystery Tour.  Tracks like “Nine In The Afternoon” and “That Green Gentlemen (Things Have Changed)” have that same happy pop sound of “Penny Lane” and “All You Need Is Love”.  “Northern Downpour” is a beautiful ballad that reminds me of “A Day In The Life” (not as epic or awesome but still great).  Other highlights include the short but sweet folk jam “Folkin’ Around”, “She’s A Handsome Woman”, probably the most obvious Beatles influenced tune, and “Behind The Sea.”, an easy-going song filled with underwater keyboards, acoustic guitars, and great harmonies – definitely the Sgt. Peppers sound.

This album transformed the band into something new, something that didn’t sound like every other emo band out there.  Unfortunately the band split, and Ross created The Young Veins (not too bad of a band, check them out).  I know this isn’t everyone’s favorite band, but it’s not 2005 anymore, it’s ok to go back and listen to this very underrated music and not be ashamed.

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