Panic! At The Disco
Contactmusic.com spoke to Ryan Ross, guitarist/lyricist from Panic! At The Disco on their final tour date in the UK.
Hey how are you?
Yeah, cool thanks!
Cool. So you guys are on a short tour of the UK right now, how's it going?
Great yeah! Today's kinda our last UK show of this tour, and then we're doing the Give It A Name festival in London tomorrow, which is cool. So yeah, its been going well so far!
Hope we've been treating you well?
(laughs) Yeah! Very well!
Good! So where the hell did you come from?? Cause you've kind of appeared from nowhere really and now your selling out venues everywhere!
Yeah I don't know really I guess a lot of it's been down to the internet and people just hearing about our band from there.
Do you think that the internet's played a pretty influential part of getting you to where you are now?
Yeah… it's helped us a lot… I mean we came over here in January with The Acadamy Is.. which was for about two weeks, so I dunno, it's been like, really quick… like "how the hell?!" at how big we'd gotten over here!
Las Vegas obviously is your home, how often do you hear The Killers mentioned in interviews now?
Uhh… pretty much every one! (laughs)
Does it bother you that the comparisons to them get made?
I dunno really… I guess it's cause they're like the only other band to have come out of Vegas in like, a really long time, so…
Do think maybe they opened peoples' eyes a bit more to what's going on in Vegas?
I don't know…. I don't really feel like there's still much of a scene there, its just… dunno… it'd be really great if what's happened with our band just kinda sparks something in people back home to try and do something different… it's weird cus we're not really home that much, so I don't really know what state the music scene is in at home right now!
Before you got signed, was it hard for you to get venues there to put you on?
Yeah! Its really hard there because things just open and close so often, there's no real rock clubs or anywhere for bands to play, its like either the dice bars, or the House of Blues which is like a 2000 person venue… there's nothing really in between, so that's probably the reason why our band just stuck to writing songs and recording demos rather than trying to play out.
You're all 18, 19 too aren't you? Does that make it harder? Because over here young bands struggle to get places to play because nearly all venues have an over 18's door policy.
Yeah that's the other thing at home! You gotta be 21 to go anywhere!
So when these UK dates finish, you're straight back out on the road in America. Looking forward to it?
Yeah! We're starting our first US headlining tour the first week of June, that's gonna run for about two months, so we're looking really forward to that, going out with the Dresden Dolls..
Do you notice a difference between the British and American audiences?
Yeah definitely, they seem a lot more energetic and happy to be here, like they seem to really appreciate that an American band made it over here… I mean the American audiences are great and everything, but we've toured the States like 4 times, whereas over here its most peoples first time seeing us, so they're seeming really excited.
You've confirmed to play the Reading/Leeds festibal here in the summer, are you looking forward to the festival season?
Yeah! We've heard a lot of really great things about that festival, I mean it's really well known even back home so we're really really looking forward to playing that!
How important is getting out to the festivals to you guys?
Well we've never actually played any festivals! Our first real one is Give it a Name tomorrow…oh, we did a couple in Japan…. festivals are kinda weird because its so much different from doing a club show especially when you're headlining and then you have to go play a festival in the middle of the day, but I think it's really good for the people who aren't there for your band, but they watch you and come away liking you. So for that it's pretty cool!
Your album's done really well here! Matt Squire produced it, were you happy with the result?
Yeah Matt was really great. It was our first time ever working with a producer, so he really taught us a lot, about playing and getting new sounds so we were all very much involved with the recording process. He taught us so much and we were all really happy with the results, it's great.
What's your favourite track, the one that best sums up Panic! At the Disco?
Everyone in the band all love the last song on the record, "Build God, Then We'll Talk", because it was the last song we wrote before we started recording, and I guess that it's probably the best indication of where the songs are going in the future.
So what's next?
Well.. after this American tour, I think we're probably gonna do some more international dates, and then start writing for our next record around October.. so we will be making a new album over the winter…. It's gonna be awesome!