LOS ANGELES — Debuting at No. 1 is certainly an accomplishment, but bumping artists like David Bowie and Adele down the music charts has Panic! at the Disco’s Brendon Urie simply gobsmacked.
“That’s insane. I mean, to be in same sentence as anyone like that. I’m not worthy,” Urie said. “I was just floored!”
“Death of a Bachelor,” released last month, topped the Billboard 200 chart and sold 190,000 equivalent albums in its first week, according to Nielsen Music.
It’s the fifth album and first No. 1 for Panic!, of which Urie is the only remaining original member. But the 28-year-old vocalist is loving life as a solo act. He co-wrote the album’s songs and plays most of the instruments on the pop-rock project.
“It’s amazing because I don’t have to compromise or I don’t have to argue as much,” he said.
In a recent interview, Urie discussed doing things his way on “Death of a Bachelor,” and his eclectic inspirations, from Beyonce to Frank Sinatra.
Q: What did you think when you heard you knocked Bowie’s album from the top spot?
A: I’m conflicted.. ... I’m happy, but man, just losing a legend, yeah, I mean, that’s unreal but I’m glad that at least I had a chance to pop in there, get on people’s radar. David Bowie had so many hits, too; it’s not like I’m hurting his career.
Q: How confident were you about your solo debut?
A: There’s always nerves when you’re releasing something. These are all very personal to me. Every song is autobiographical. It’s about something I experienced or want to experience, so it’s all very close to my heart.
Q: Who were some of your inspirations on the album?
A: Queen, Bruce Springsteen. ... There’s a pretty good, in my opinion, a good mash up of Beyonce and Sinatra on the title track. ... I wrote the song actually trying to make a Sinatra song ... and then I hit this wall, just writing-wise, where I was getting so frustrated. ... So I took a break from it and went back to this beat I had worked on like months before and it kind of had this “Drunk in Love,” Beyonce-kind of feel. ... It was just like a happy accident.