For nearly a month now, ever since [artist id="2008947"]Panic! at the Disco[/artist] announced that guitarist Ryan Ross and bassist Jon Walker were leaving to start a new band called the Young Veins, there has been speculation that any number of "Behind the Music"-type maladies (drugs, money, jealousy ... you name it) had led to the split.
Despite both sides denying that there was any drama involved — both said "creative differences" were to blame — that speculation didn't show any sides of letting up.
And Spencer Smith was getting tired of it. So last week, when both Panic! and the Veins released singles on the same day (Panic! had announced the date in advance; the Veins, well, didn't), Smith wasn't annoyed at his former bandmates for attempting to steal his thunder.
"No, I wasn't shocked or mad at all. We had about three weeks of people not knowing what was going on with the bands, and it's kind of nice that the music was released at the same time," Smith told MTV News. "Because I think that after fans are able to hear me and [Panic! frontman] Brendon [Urie]'s song and Ryan and Jon's song, it's kind of apparent that there's a difference in musical styles, and so it kind of puts to rest some of the rumors about what happened out there."
So with both tunes available for a side-by-side comparison, Smith is prepared to let his band's song, "New Perspective," do the talking for him and Urie. He says they'll both remain good friends with Ross and Walker, as well as fans of their band, but really, it's time to move on. The music Smith and Urie are working on as Panic! will go a long way to accomplishing that goal. The only problem now is whittling down the batch of tunes they have at their disposal.
"Brendon is always sort of writing his own little songs. He'll write these weird little show-tune-sounding things — he's always kind of had his own little collection of songs, some of which we've been drawing from or using little sections of for the new stuff," Smith said. "And a few months ago, [it] was right around the time I moved in with Brendon, and we kind of started working on stuff together — and Jon and Ryan had been doing the same thing, kind of towards the end of touring, they had been working on some songs together — and that was kind of right around the time that maybe where we wanted to go wasn't particularly matching up, and so, it just kind of went from there."
Smith said he and Urie haven't decided who will produce their album. So far, they've been recording demos with Goldfinger frontman John Feldmann, but there's still plenty of other names to consider for the project, including Pretty. Odd. producer Rob Mathers (who just so happens to be producing the Young Veins' debut) and some dude named Mark Hoppus.
"We haven't decided yet, you know? We've met a couple of other producers, but we haven't really decided who we want to do the record with," Smith said. "When we get done with the [Blink-182] tour in August, hopefully in the fall is when we'll be recording. ... We've actually talked to Rob, and hopefully he'll do some string arrangements or maybe produce a track for us. And, of course, Mark Hoppus. We've met with him, and we'll be touring, too, so hopefully we can work it out on the road."
Whoever they get to produce the album, Smith is ready to get it out there. After all, he's over talking about the past, and he's looking very much forward to the future.
"We're just going to have fun. These songs are just Brendon and I having fun, because that's what we want to do," Smith said. "I know that, on some level, we'll always be linked to Jon and Ryan, but we're just looking forward to doing Panic! at the Disco ... and I think our fans are too."