Panic at the disco
2016 SAW THE DEATH OF A BACHELOR, AND THE INTRODUCTION OF A WHOLE NEW BRENDON
WHAT’S THE CRAZIEST THING THAT’S HAPPENED TO YOU THIS YEAR, BRENDON?
“I almost got lit on fire during Bohemian Rhapsody [at Slam Dunk festival in May] – that was so crazy! We were pretty groggy and sleepy because we had done two shows that morning and I wasn’t really feeling myself, so I forgot about [the incoming fire] ’til the last second. I’m holding this high note and then I turn around and kinda see it out of the corner of my eye as I’m singing, and I’m like,‘oh crap!’ So I had to jump up a little earlier than expected just to get out of the way. I was so nervous [to headline Slam Dunk]. I was like,‘i don’t know how this is gonna go… It’s our first time headlining a festival and I don’t know what it’s like.’ I had talked to other bands who’d done it and they were like, ‘It is sooo much fun!’ But I can’t just take somebody’s word for it, so of course I was anxious. But I was floored by the response, it was so amazing. Once we were finished with that I kinda missed it, because there were so many bands I was a fan of [playing]. It was such a cool line-up, with so many cool people.to be able to do something like that… Oh my God.”
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED ABOUT YOURSELF THIS YEAR?
“I learned I can push myself.at Slam Dunk we had to do [Radio 1’s Big Weekend] in the morning [of Slam Dunk Midlands], and then we had to run and finish Slam Dunk, and we thought: a) we weren’t going to make the call times to actually play the show, and b) that we weren’t going to be able to play it physically, because we’d had no sleep – we were just talking in tongues! This year I learned how to just do things better, like touring better – you may have to sacrifice a couple things just to stay healthier, but it’s gonna be so much better in the long run.and I think I learned the compromise of that. Give yourself a little bit of time to heal before you party again, and maybe treat yourself a little better so you can perform better for everyone else.”
WHAT’S CHANGED FOR YOU IN THE LAST YEAR?
“Hmmm… (Thinks for a while) I’m more pleased with how the performance has been going in terms of the live show – I’m really happy with my progress and our progress as a band. For me, I’m just pleased that it feels like all of the hard work is paying off, in terms of immediate reaction from the crowd. I really enjoy getting that immediate, visceral, spontaneous reaction from people.”
WHERE ARE YOU AT WITH LIFE IN GENERAL, AT THE END OF 2016?
“I’m having a lot more fun with live shows – I never thought that would be possible. I thought I would get tired after a while. I talked to a lot of older artists and they say that they’re happy and stuff, but I’m sure it wears down on you.after two or three decades it’s gotta be wearing you down! I just wanna keep the momentum going – I love it! I wanna see what else I’m capable of and what else Panic! can do.and I mentioned [in my Kerrang! Guest Edit issue – K!1646] that I’d like to do Broadway – it’d be fun to try other stuff.”
YOU ALSO WORKED ON SOME NEW MUSIC THIS YEAR, RIGHT?
“yeah. I hung out with my buddy Jake Sinclair [who produced Death Of A Bachelor]. It was good ’cause I had a couple days off in Newyork and I just spent those days hanging with him and we caught up a little bit.we listened to a couple of new songs and I was like,‘what do you think about these?’ And he’s like,‘great! We should start working on ’em!’ So now we’re in talks of figuring out the logistics of a studio day to go and record stuff. I’m still working, actually – when we’re done talking here, I’m gonna work [on songs] for a few hours before bed!”
WILL THESE SONGS BE FOR A NEW ALBUM, PERHAPS?
“What’s funny is I’m not even thinking about an album right now – I’m just thinking about songs, and that’s usually how it starts.this Is Gospel was [a song that started out as a single] but ended up on the album afterwards, as was Hallelujah.that happens sometimes, ’cause I just love songs. I get excited by a three-and-a-half minute idea. If it ends up on the album, great; if not, that’s fine. But I love working. I’m always excited to make new music.”