Death of a Bachelor tour ignites fans at Pepsi Center
PANIC! SETS STAGE ABLAZE
In their first headlining arena tour of the decade, Panic! at the Disco arrived at a sold-out Pepsi Center to threaten audiences with a good time.
Their March 17 set was a festival of high energy. Opening acts Saint Motel and Misterwives warmed-up audiences with frenetic romps across stage; when he wasn’t dancing along to his own songs, Panic! frontman Brendon Urie performed standing backflips in front of a fiery pyrotechnic backdrop. Though the performers were characteristically short of breath in the Denver air, all three powered through to deliver a concert worthy of the crowd’s near-constant cheering.
Panic!’s set was a buffet of their staple dishes: Urie infused most songs with his iconic falsetto belts to give the concert-going experience a texture separate from the studio albums; a powerfully earnest rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody” made its expected appearance mid-show; and Urie quipped his way through “I Write Sins Not Tragedies” (“This is an unreleased track,” he said to introduce it on St. Patrick’s Day), a song he’s openly weary of but but plays faithfully “as a gift to you [the fans].”
That kindness is reciprocated in spades by fans. Paper hearts of all colors were distributed by Panic!’s most adoring followers before the show, meant to act as a filter for smartphone flashlights when the LGBTQ+ positive track “Girls/ Girls/ Boys” was performed. The result is a stadium of swaying rainbow lights, and Urie thanked the fans for their effort while flying a Colorado Pride flag from his mic.
Though the show relied more on performance than spectacle (cramming a lengthy 22-song set list into 75 minutes), while Urie traveled from the stage to an elevated platform at the back of the stadium, a crazed Pete Wentz appeared on screen to participate in a pre-recorded short film wherein he kidnaps and hypnotizes a crazed Urie. The throwback was a small touch that once again demonstrated the group’s devotion to their fanbase.
The Death of a Bachelor Tour acts as a testament to Panic! at the Disco’s resurgence in the cultural narrative. In recent years, the band has toured prolifically and performs strongly despite their overextended schedule—when they came to the Pepsi Center, it wasn’t to play a gig, but rather to give back to their base.