Album Review: Painting Of A Panic Attack by Frightened Rabbit

Forming way back in 2003, Scottish rockers Frightened Rabbit have been bringing audiences and listeners their unmistakable sound for over a decade. After signing to Atlantic Records in 2010, the band went on to release their fourth studio album Pedestrian Verse in 2013 and were met with both critical and chart praise, finding themselves at number 9 in the UK Album Chart.

Three years on and the band’s fifth album Painting Of A Panic Attack is finally here. Having teased the new album across social media with artwork and a few teaser tracks, anticipation has been building. Has it been worth it? Without a doubt.

Intimacy and personality

One thing that is striking about Frightened Rabbit is their appeal as a major label band to stay grounded and not get too big for themselves. They’re still playing those smaller venues and giving audiences that intimate feel. This intimacy is something which resonates very strongly in all their work. That ability to draw you in and make you feel like each song is speaking directly to you. This is something which the band have done by the bucket load with Painting Of A Panic Attack.

Album opener ‘Death Dream’ is hauntingly beautiful. The simplicity of the song whilst still having the abilty to draw this much emotion from an opening track is very special. The album could have ended right there, though we’re glad it didn’t, and we would have still left happy (albeit the less cheery vibe of the song).

Lyrically Frightened Rabbit are faultless, and this is just as clear on this latest album as with previous ones. ‘Woke Up Hurting’ is just one example of this: “Daybreak comes with the devil’s hum, a carcuss starts to breathe, wakes one more time to try and find a place to count its teeth.” There are, of course, many ways to read into these lyrics and that is one of the charms of the band. Lead singer Scott’s vocals are easily identifiable and the Scottish twang really brings something even more emotional to every word that is sung. It would be easy to relay all the lyrics from every track to express just how wonderful they are, but why not give the album a listen instead?

Appreciate everything for what it is

It would be fair to say that there is often a slight negative vibe to many of the bands tracks. On Painting Of A Panic Attack we are presented with a track titled ‘An Otherwise Disappointing Life.’ However, it makes everything the band sing about feel more real and relatable. ‘Get Out’ is a song that seems to be about not being able to let go of a lover, whilst ‘Still Want To Be Here’ could be read as a story of not being the greatest situation, but appreciating it for what it is and not wanting to be anywhere else at that moment in time.

Frightened Rabbit have yet again put together an album of sheer delight and realism. Beautiful lyrics and unmistakable vocals combined with a perfect musicality produces something very special. The band seem to have something different on offer for listeners, and having seen them perform live the recomendation to go if you get the chance is high. 

Have you listened to Painting Of A Panic Attack? Give us your thoughts in the comments below!