I first saw Panic! at the Disco at Emo's in Austin in 2015—I actually wouldn't really call it "seeing" since my view was blocked by an angry mom protecting her child from anyone who dared step in front of them or even "hearing" because some dude obnoxiously sang through the entire concert off key (without once putting his phone down from recording the ENTIRE show.) Obviously, it was a less than ideal concert experience. I didn't expect to ever see the band again, I assumed they were fizzling out into obscurity.
Boy was I wrong. When Panic! put out Death of a Bachelor at the beginning of 2016, I fell in love all over again and ended up seeing them twice that year—once at a rodeo (they were pulled into the arena on the back of a truck) and once at an amphitheater. Last year, I saw them again at the Frank Erwin Center. It was my first arena show ever.
I have spent the past year listening and re-listening to their old albums and getting excited over their new music, too. I've come to really respect and love their music—which is why it frustrates the hell out of me that so many publications and music critics dismiss them (and I'll be you $20 it's because a huge part of their fanbase is made up of female teens) despite the fact they are probably one of the biggest bands in the world now. So many of my friends think they're just a throwback band even thought it was just a year ago that they sold out Madison Square Garden.
I assumed I'd be seeing them forever as tiny lil ants at arena shows until this spring when they began announcing secret pop-up shows all over the country at small venues. Bryan and I hoped and prayed they'd come to Austin—and then they did! Watching them perform in a tiny, intimate venue was more than I dreamed of, and they even let fans bring in cameras to the show. I obviously photographed the set, so here's my favorite shots from the night.