Imagine Dragons at the Roundhouse
Imagine Dragons choose London for their comeback. Saving for some festival and TV appearances, this is their first actual show in a year, with fans queuing as early as four in the morning to be right by the front. Teasing their audience with a 20-minute delay, the Las Vegas four-piece enter the Roundhouse playing Thunder, the power pop single from their latest record Evolve, due for release on 23rd June.
Frontman Dan Reynolds, tonight in a Vans-style attire, sings and dances across the stage, showing off all his trademark moves to the delight of the crowd. His voice is powerful and magnetising, his charisma undeniable. Reynolds easily shifts between stadium-filling hard-rock choruses and mellow, voice-and-guitar moments. He mixes the intimate with the monumental. Just like in It’s Time, which builds up from an acoustic intro, exploding into full-band mode – and he dedicates it to Manchester.
It’s a short setlist but Imagine Dragons throw little gems here and there to make it more appetising: a snippet of Bleeding Out before Demons; a stripped-down cover of Creep before Trouble; and, close to the show’s conclusion, Nothing Left to Say, one of their best songs that – sadly – doesn’t get played very often. The quality of the concert peaks with Shots and Amsterdam, two clear fan favourites; but the biggest roars come from the young public with I Bet My Life and Believer – and, of course, when they play Radioactive as the final encore.
Nearly five years ago, your reviewer was a few yards down Chalk Farm Road, watching Imagine Dragons’ debut show at Dingwalls. A younger Reynolds would hit hard a huge five-foot drum as he played Round and Round. It felt as if we were witnessing the beginning of something big. And big they have become – but we wished better too. Their uninspiring second album was aptly named Smoke + Mirrors, let’s hope Evolve is a reflection too of their current progress. Don’t get me wrong though, it’s still a quite brilliant act for a generation lacking meaningful bands.
Filippo L’Astorina, the Editor
Photos: Filippo L’Astorina
For further information about Imagine Dragons and future events visit here.