The Deal: Pop-rock act takes a different direction on sophomore album.
The Good: This album is rushing full of cheerfully instrumental-pop-rocking tracks that don't really have the band's previously emo vibe. The album begins with a tribute to fans as singer Brendon Urie announces "We're so sorry we've been gone. We were busy writing songs for you" in the opening track, "We're So Starving." It then sprawls off into "Nine in the Afternoon," a happily catchy tune that sets the album's tone. "Do You Know What I'm Seeing" starts out slow but gains speed as drums, harmonica and a larger symphony of sounds come forth. Birds are chirping and Luie sings about not giving "a damn about the weather." "Northern Downpour" is a real highlight on the album that fulfills the first word of the album's title: pretty. Other highlights are "Behind The Sea" which has a series of parade-like drumming and anthemic singing along with its symphony and a Beatles-esque vibe. The perky "From A Mountain In The Middle Of The Cabins" is full of more horns along with tambourine, piano and whistling. The album ends with "Mad As Rabbits" another tambourine-rattling, beat-clapping, guitar-chiming collage of sounds. From start to finish it really is an interesting album.
The Bad: I'm thinking they went a little bit nuts with all the instruments. I also wonder if they will pull these sounds off at their live shows. "Folkin' Around" takes a stretch on the album with the band showing they can musically go folk, although with Urie's voice it doesn't quite work out.
The Verdict: Go get it. It's a fun album to hear and it won't drain you. Full of upbeat songs, it will take you for a fun ride.