Long bangs slicked across the face, tight black jeans and an average
age of 20. Unfortunately, this was not reminiscent of a Ramones
set circa the 1970s. Rather, it was an evening filled with three
bands currently blowing up the pop-punk radio waves. When the likes
of Funeral Party, fun. and veterans Panic! At The
Disco book a tour together everyone comes prepared for a night
Like Wolfmother or Jet, Funeral Party gets their
energy going with dance-rock guitars, club-friendly synthesizers,
and vocals just smooth enough to reel you in and never let go. Unfortunately,
Funeral Party got a rather short set for the evening, yet they were
still able to fill it with some of their best songs. Like "Finale,"
with its Airborne Toxic Event sentiment from the deep bass
intro to the angst filled lyrics and the occasional anthemic guitar
progression. It was "New York City Moves To A Sound Of L.A."
that brought the night home for the opener. This is where the energy
of the band is more than apparent. Chaos comes out in the form of
1980s electric guitar weens, no-regard-for-society vocals, and punk
tempo percussion. You want to leave your audience with an imprint
of your music on their brain. Well, with lyrics like "New York
City loves to mess around" set to a background of a few well-placed
claps and a preemptive group of backing vocals, this was definitely
one of the numbers left ringing after the night was done.
Next up was fun. Following the fury of Funeral Party, fun. chose
to put "Walking The Dog" near the beginning of their own
set. It was a pleasant change to the general theme of the evening.
With the light hint of rhythm notes and some cymbal sashays, the
song took on a bit of a beach bum feeling. For a few moments you
felt comfortable sitting back and relaxing at a concert. Unheard
of, I know. Soon enough, they broke out their newest single "All
The Pretty Girls" and with its Queen-inspired opening,
this song got everyone in the crowd hyped up. The beauty of this
number is how effortless it is. Strings join huge rock strums, while
harmonious vocals go along nicely with a set of drums that primarily
stuck to the upper half of the kit. It was this song that went perfectly
with the large light display on stage, of well, fun., of course.
Their set ended just as quickly as Funeral Party's seemed to and,
poetically, with the same song that ends their album Aim And
Ignite. "Take Your Time (Coming Home)" starts off
with a soft African (or something similar) chant. However, this
really isn't any indication of how the song itself sounds. The ivories
are tickled not only in the traditional sense, but with a few organ
hints as well. Energy on stage seemed to build with each progression
until everything paused for a few more chants. The entire song moved
from classic rock to blues and even contained some reggae-dancing.
These guys decided to end with a showcase of everything they have
up their sleeves. Nice.
came the headliner Panic! At The Disco. With the rumor mills working
hard to figure out why half of the band left in 2009, the band
had a bit of a hump to overcome with this show. Fans in our area
hadn't seen the band on stage in many years, but perhaps that
worked to their advantage, as the band that took the stage that
night was not the one I remember from around 2008. With the vocals
dropped and the guitars extremely high, Brendon Urie had
to morph his normally silky and very sultry voice into that of
a screamo act. The occasional vocal belts that came from who knows
where rivaled that of Aerosmith in their pure chaotic nature.
Regardless of sound, their set was littered with selections that
won the crowd over. The new hit "Ballad Of Mona Lisa"
was a mixture of dynamics of alternative-heavy guitars and a few
eerie echoing vocal breaks. With catchy lyrics on repeat, audience
engagement was easy. Working through previous chart toppers like
"Lying Is The Most Fun A Girl Can Have Without Taking Her
Clothes Off" and "Nine In The Afternoon," the band
kept us all singing along. It was the latter song that came off
as one of the more predominant songs of the evening. With the
guitars taken to the point of simple melodic hops along the strings
and a light background of percussion, this was one song that even
those who didn't know the words could enjoy. The official set
ended with "I Write Sins Not Tragedies" and one of the
most recognizable beginnings Panic! has. The finger work on this
selection is precise and almost elegant. It's as though it's a
stand-up bass, as opposed to an electric guitar on stage (in fact
I believe one is used on the album). The chorus is characteristically
PATD, full of anger and pop-punk tempos. In the end, it's that
finger dance that brings you back over and over again.
Overall it was a very enjoyable evening. Or as one fan put
it, "Don't Panic! we're having fun. at this Funeral Party".
Panic! At The Disco
w/ fun. and Funeral Party
June 12th, 2011
Beaumont Club, Kansas City, MO
More Music Features
e-mail the chief
Like this article?
it to a friend!