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Volume 68, Issue 92, February 10, 2003

Arts & Entertainment

'Panic' attacks Fat Cats for CD party

By Leslie Smith 
The Daily Cougar

When stepping into the dimly lit, smoke-filled room of Club Fat Cat, previously known as Mary Janeis, to hear the much-talked-about Panic in Detroit, the different and extremely diverse crowd was immediately apparent. From Goth spikes to Converse All-Stars to i70s hairstyles, the audience was composed of a strange mixture of people who complimented the music which was pumped in through the overhead speakers.

This scene did not strike much enthusiasm for how the rest of the evening was going to go.

The opening act for Panicis CD release party was Casket Lottery, and although parts of their songs were tolerable, most of their time was spent screaming into the microphone. The lyrics were nearly inaudible. It was frightening to think of what would next have to be endured. Fortunately, Panic was a pleasant surprise.

The four friends known as Panic in Detroit got their name from a David Bowie song. They all work by day and play by night, your typical garage band trying to get their shot at success. But unlike most mediocre, untrained garage groups, this foursome has all the talent and gusto of artists who know what it takes to get there.

When Panic took the stage, some of the crowd had cleared out, but those who remained were obviously fans. Shouting out song requests and jumping to the catchy beat, the audience was full of energy spurred on by the power coming from the stage. After only a year-and-a-half together, the band showed great maturity and charisma for inspiring a crowd.

Although there were minor problems with the sound equipment and the mixing of vocals to instruments was not quite balanced, the band carried it off with ease and kept the show rolling.

Lead vocalist Ryan Chavez engaged the audience with a clear voice and was backed by the skilled guitar work of lead guitarist Ben Murphy. On bass, the talented Melissa Lonchambron bobbed her head in time with the music and drummer David Hobizal carried the load of it all.

All in all Panic made an impression, and the band might just be successful if it loses its opening act. Their self-titled EP is now available in music stores and can also be picked up at www.silverthree.com.

They will be starting a national tour in less than two weeks with Hey Mercedes and are also featured on the Abercrombie & Fitch Web site. To learn more about Panic in Detroit, visit their Web site at www.panicindetroit.com.

Panic in Detroit

Club Fat Cat

the verdict: Panic in Detroit has the perfect sound to be a successful garage-rock band.
 Send comments to dcshobiz@mail.uh.edu

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