Thursday, May 01, 2008

A Panic! You Can't Scream Out

I found myself at DAR Constitution Hall last night. To see Panic at the Disco on the Honda Civic Tour.

I confess, I like them. I like the sound of their first album and I find their antics innovative and creative. I didn't like their second album all that much when I first heard it, but it's been growing on me.

What I did not realize to save my life (and really, I should have researched this) was that Panic has a rather sizable fan base that consists of prepubescent little girls. And it didn't help that the opening acts -- Motion City Soundtrack and The Hush Sound -- also appear to be popular among the pre-teen set. Oh yeah, and Phantom Planet. In case you don't know (I didn't), they sing the theme song to "The OC." Yeah. Pre-teen. (Okay, okay, dammit, I admit it, I liked Phantom Planet and just added them to my myspace friends. Grrrr.)

Okay, my characterization of the girls just not fair. They're probably not prepubescent. But they are, I'd guess, around 15. I would hazard a guess that they probably could, in fact, get pregnant if they tried hard enough. Okay, to be fair, there were some boys too, but they we of the Y chromosomes were severely outnumbered. I mean really.

Some were their with their parents. Many, I'd hazard to guess, were not. My only comment on this is: when I was their age, no one was shelling out the cash to let me go to concerts. Let alone spend the hundreds of dollars it likely cost to get the t-shirts and other memorabilia. Let's not forget that pretty much each of these girls had cell phones (and not the cheap kind, we're talking phones with slide-out full keyboards and 5.2MP digicams in them). And digital cameras with which they were either photographing or video-recording large parts of the concert. I have a full-time job and I can barely afford that shit for myself.

Have you ever been in an auditorium filled with prepubescent girls while one of their favorite bands is on stage? I swear I could feel my ears tingling to the high-pitched screams these girls let out. To the extent that one can "feel" sound, I did. My ears were this close to bleeding. My right one still hurts today. I've spent an inordinate amount of time today saying "What? What??"

A few observations, if I may (and since this is my blog, I give myself license):

-- It must be really really weird to be a 13-year-old girl standing next to her dad (who was actually quite DILF-y) when the band sings the following lyrics: "I've got more wit, a better kiss, a hotter touch, a better fuck / Than any boy you'll ever meet, sweetie you had me." That song actually starts with lyrics involving slipping off your dress. I dunno, I guess that's a Family Talk moment in the making.

-- I think it may be a little irresponsible for a band, knowing mode age of its audience, to ask how many of them are single, and to follow that up with, "because I'm sure Brandon wants to take someone back to his hotel tonight." Because frankly, I'm sure a lot of those squealing pre-teens would jump at that opportunity, irresponsible though it is.

-- I also think it's a little irresponsible, when your lead singer comes out for an encore sans the rest of the band, to announce that the rest of the band is occupied in the back stage, "probably doing Jaeger bombs or something." Seriously, folks, can we at least try not to glamorize drinking totally-fuck-you-up drinks to kids who have almost a decade before they can legally drink it?

-- I find it humorous that the Honda Civic Tour touts its environmental consciousness and the fact that it donated a portion of its ticket sales to environmental causes... while all these little girls ran around carrying their souvenir paraphernalia in plastic bags.

Side note: When going to a musical event, do not take as your date someone with no rhythm whatsoever. Especially if he doesn't seem to notice this fact. When the band says to clap with them, it's not that hard... but for some, it is.

But anyway, I still should say that yes, I did enjoy the show immensely. Although I had reservations given how down-tempo their second album as a whole was, they amped it up for the show and it was a really great time. But all I can say is that if Fall Out Boy makes their way out here, I will go to their show armed with earplugs, accusations of geriatric state be damned!

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