Photo Credit: Mallory Turner
If you’ve been following ex-Panic at the Disco’s Dallon Weekes’ latest project, I Don’t Know How But They How Found Me, you’re probably more than aware that it’s been awhile since they’ve released a song. What you SHOULD know, is that their last two releases, “Choke” and “Modern Day Cain,” beat out some pretty heavy bands –like Imagine Dragons and X Ambassadors– on the Alt charts when they were released last Fall. So naturally, the fans of this kinda-quirky-band are forever ravenously awaiting new music.
This morning, the fans’ wishes were granted when the band dropped a new song and video for “No One Likes An Opening Band,” a hilarious piano ballad marking the often depressing joys of being the opening band that no one cares about. Dallon opted to not play his signature bass during the song, making for a more minimalistic yet showy and theatrical Sinatra-like song. And let’s just say, this band thrives on its theatrical moments —and all that’s missing from this video is Dallon sliding into the splits and giving us jazz hands on the last note. Maybe next time…
If you’ve been lucky enough to see IDKHBTFM band play live, you’ll know that they often open with this little gem — and if you listen to the lyrics, you’ll undoubtedly chuckle at the fact that they are “opening” as an “opening band” in the coming months for The Aquabats. Do you sense the irony, though? Pretty brilliant on Dallon’s behalf to write such spot-on lyrics of how most people feel about opening bands — that is, unless you’re actually there to see the opening band.
The video is captioned on Youtube as if it were a found VHS cassette of a 1983 community talent performance, and it features an older woman reminiscent of every person in the worlds’ school drama teacher, playing piano — and of course, band member Ryan Seaman playing the bells and other percussion items. If you don’t know the backstory of I Don’t Know How But They Found Me, you should check out our original profile of the band which explains things in much more detail.
For now, check out the newest video, “No One Likes An Opening Band,” download the song for free here, and then read our Q&A with frontman Dallon Weekes below.
OTW: What was the inspiration for this song?
Dallon Weekes: Anyone who is a performer is going to be an opening act at some point. I suppose it was inspired by the anxieties that can come with being in that spot. The audience isn’t yours, and you have to work that much harder to win people over.
OTW: Do you ever worry that only your mom and dad will come see your shows?
Dallon Weekes: Yes.
OTW: You don’t play your signature instrument (bass) during this song, and Ryan plays bells and random things — why did you decide to leave it so minimal?
Dallon Weekes: It didn’t feel right doing it any other way. Minimalism in music can be hard to pull off. So I wanted to push myself into keeping it simple.
OTW: You open with this song on your performances — do you think it’s ironic if you happen to be opening for another band whilst opening with this song?
Dallon Weekes: Actually that’s when it works best! People often seem to approach an opening act with a skeptical attitude, and I feel like this song is a great way to acknowledge that, and then cut through it. On the other hand, whenever we headline a show, we either won’t perform it, or we will ask the openers if they’re ok with it first. I never want to offend anyone.
OTW: This video appears to be actually shot on VHS — tell us something weird and interesting about the making of this video.
Dallon Weekes: We shot in this 100+ year old church building in Salt Lake City using two modern HD cameras, and one vintage VHS camcorder that had been sitting in a basement for the last thirty years. We didn’t know it actually still worked until we checked the tape afterward.
OTW: You have some shows coming up — can we expect to hear anything new if we’ve seen you play before?
Dallon Weekes: One of our biggest goals as a band is to never play the same show twice. Even if the set is the same, we always try to leave room for improvisation. Since we don’t have a record out yet, we don’t want to give everything away, but we still want to have a unique experience and make every show feel different.
Catch I DON’T KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME on Tour:
April 7 (Los Angeles, CA)
April 8 (Santa Ana, CA)
April 9 (Tucson, AZ)
April 11 (Las Vegas, NV)
April 13 (San Francisco, CA)
April 14 (Sacramento, CA)
April 16 (Seattle, WA)
April 17 (Portland, OR)