The Imagine Dragons return with their fifth studio offering and it’s an ambitious and intelligent record which might just be trying to fit too much in at once.
Just 3 years ago, the Imagine Dragons were Spotify’s biggest band (most streamed and most sold), so there’s a lot of anticipation for Mercury Act 1.
But can they dominate the 2020s as they did the 2010s? On the basis of this offering? Probably not. “Your heart is frozen over, I’m a four-leaf clover” is a lyrical, “you what, mate?” and there’s quite a lot of that here and not just on No Time For Toxic People.
And the music is similarly all over the place, and while you can occasionally pick out their emo-soul, there’s a lot of unnecessary solos littering up the joint and making it hard to focus.
That’s not to say you can’t find a diamond in the rough, Easy Come Easy Go, for example talks of the pain of watching a loved one undergo cancer treatment, “We were there for the ups and downs and there for the constant rounds of chemo” and it’s brutally honest.
But all in all? There’s too much here for any kind of coherence. It’s an album that, broken into singles, might work superbly well but there’s no sense of structure as a whole.