Written By: Melanie Pabst
Originality: (4 / 5) Vocals/Flow: (4 / 5) Lyrics: (4 / 5) Production: (4 / 5) Average: (4 / 5)
When an Imagine Dragons song comes on, I can’t help but sing my heart out. Suddenly my phone becomes a microphone and I’ve caught a few people looking at me from the next car over, they always look a little concerned. I’ve been a fan of Imagine Dragons since they released their first single, “It’s Time” back in 2012, which was just a taste of what the band had to offer with their first album Night Visions. I’ve had every album they’ve made since on repeat each time they drop. Imagine Dragon’s newest album, Evolve, isn’t any different.
I’d been anticipating the release of Evolve since “Believer” was first released. My first thought when I heard the song was that it was still their raw sound. Thank God! They were experimenting with some new sounds, so I was intrigued. But they still had their rock band roots. Imagine Dragons is a band that deserves be known, point blank. They’re loud, they want to be heard, and they’re more than worth the listen. The following single, “Thunder” didn’t make as much of an impact as “Believer” had, but it was still enough to keep us all waiting patiently for this third album.
Imagine Dragon consists of lead vocalist Dan Reynolds, lead guitarist Wayne Sermon, bassist and keyboardist Ben McKee, and drummer Daniel Platzman. They first gained attention in 2012 with the release of their first album, Night Visions. With hits like “It’s Time” and “Radioactive,” it was hard to not be hooked on such great sound. They’ve been raw, since the very beginning. They followed up Night Visions with the release of Smoke & Mirrors in 2015. Hits like “I Bet My Life” and “Shots” only continued to propel them forward. And I kept their album in my recently played for months. After finishing the tour for their second album, Imagine Dragons had announced that they were taking a hiatus for the next year. While I had been a little saddened at this, because I’m a fan and a sucker for new music, I knew they’d come back with something good.
Despite the pressure, Imagine Dragons did not disappoint with Evolve. I rated the album straight 4’s all the way down for originality, vocals/flow, lyrics and production. From the powerful “Whatever It Takes” to the vulnerable love ballad, “Walking the Wire,” Evolve is good, and filled with enough songs to sing your heart out to in the car. Despite the new sounds of pop and electronic brought about in this album, it didn’t ruin it for me. I still felt they remained close to their rock origins, especially with songs like “Believer” and “Rise Up.” Plus, I like when a band steps outside of their comfort zone a bit to try some new sounds. Keeps it interesting.