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Panic At The Disco Biography

Photo of Panic At The Disco by Kirsty UmbackTruly a rock group of their times, Panic! at the Disco was discovered shortly after they posted some demo tracks on the internet.

It all started with guitarist Ryan Ross and drummer Spencer Smith, teens living in the suburbs of Las Vegas, learning to play their instruments by covering Blink 182 songs. When they decided it was time to move ahead, they recruited classmates Brent Wilson, bass, and Brendon Urie, guitar/vocals, to form a quartet.

Current members: Spencer Smith – drums, percussion (2004–present), Brendon Urie – lead vocals, guitars, keyboards, piano (2004–present), Dallon Weekes.

"We started off learning to play our instruments by doing Blink 182 covers. They were one of the first bands we got into." ~ Ryan Ross
The fledgling group soon adopted the name Panic At The Disco, after a Name Taken and Smiths song. Practicing in the living room of Spencer Smith's grandmother, it wasn't long before the band had a couple tracks they wanted to be heard. But how could they draw the attention they desired? Though it may seem like a novel idea to many, for high school kids of the new millennium it was a simple solution - they posted a couple tracks online on a site devoted to Decaydance, a label belonging to Fall Out Boy bassist Pete Wentz.

The group's third studio album, Vices & Virtues (Buy Album), was released on March 22, 2011 on Fueled by Ramen. Following the departure of primary lyricist and guitarist Ryan Ross and bassist Jon Walker in July 2009, the album was recorded as a duo by vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Brendon Urie and drummer Spencer Smith. While Walker and Ross' exit left a hole in the group's songwriting regime, the experience became the catalyst for Urie finding his own voice and the confidence to take over as the band's principal songsmith. The lyrics touch on themes of manipulation and confusion. Vices & Virtues took over two years to create, and the increased time in the studio brought forth new musical experimentation. Upon release, critics praised the album's wide variety of musical stylings. Preceded by lead single, "The Ballad of Mona Lisa", the album debuted at number seven on the Billboard 200 selling 56,000 copies within its first week.¹

¹ Complete Bio at Ace's Bio-Farm.

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Panic! At The Disco, Rollling Stone no. 1019, February 2007
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