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Interview:
Panic! at the Disco keeps its head on straight
 

By GARY GRAFF
@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

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Art is definitely about life for Panic! at the Disco frontman Brandon Urie on "This is Gospel," the second single from the group's forthcoming fourth studio album, "Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die!"

The song, Urie acknowledges, was inspired by drummer Spencer Smith`s battle with alcohol and drug addiction, which led to his decision to sit out the group's current tour in order to go through rehab. "That was something I was experiencing, too, second-hand," notes Urie, 26. "Having to witness my best friend with this thing that was plaguing him was breaking my heart. I wanted to put it on myself to make the best songs I could for this record and I wanted to be honest, but at the same time I wanted to make sure I was also sensitive to everyone's feelings."

Urie says he didn't show Smith the song for quite awhile after he wrote it, and even when he did he didn't tell the drummer what it was about. But Smith figured it out, and Urie says it was Smith's decision to include the song as "Too Weird To Live's..." opening track.

"When I showed Spencer the song he said, 'Yeah, I kinda figured it was about me," Urie recalls, "and I was like, 'How do you feel about it being on the record?' And he was like, 'I think we should. I think we need to be honest.'

"I was so proud of my friend, that he wanted to be that honest because that's one of the hardest things to be able to do, to be that open and that confessional. I really commend Spencer for that, and he's doing really well. He's killing it, in fact, which is great to see."

"Too Weird To Live..." comes out Oct. 8, and Panic! plans to follow its current tour with Fall Out Boy with European dates and more road work well into 2014.

Fall Out Boy, Panic! At the Disco and Twenty One Pilots perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14, at the Palace, Lapeer Road at I-75, Auburn Hills. Tickets are $39.50 general admission floor and $35 reserved. Call 248-377-0100 or visit www.palacenet.com.

Web Site: www.palacenet.com

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