Imagine dragons have come to the American street, now mixing light and dark

NEW YORK (AP) — Imagine Dragons is touring the US this summer and fall, which means frontman Dan Reynolds has a lot of dark places to go.

The band debuted songs from the second part of “Mercury”, a double album of contemplation and moody meditations on death and human infirmity. Reynolds takes the pain away at every show.

“I didn’t know how to perform without going to the place I wrote the song,” he says. “When I get up on stage, ‘Okay, the song is playing. I said? What was I feeling? Now I feel it.’ It’s a lot to go through emotionally every other night.”

It has also been a challenge for fans to integrate the new songs into a smooth, fun night out, requiring the band to somehow fit in with songs like “Radioactive” and “Believe” like “Wrecked”, which Reynolds called it. Wrote about losing her sister- in-laws to cancer.

One solution was to break out some of “Mercury” and halfway through the concert play four or five acoustically, at a secondary level in a stripped-down, intimate manner.

“It was really hard to find the speed and do it right,” Reynolds says. “How do we go from empowerment to happy and then from happy to angry? There is a lot of emotional baggage with Imagine Dragons.”

Fans will know as the tour winds through states such as Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, Georgia, Texas, Colorado, California and Nevada.

The lyrics to “Mercury” reflect a few years of turmoil for Reynolds. “During those five years while the record was being written, death played a big part in my life,” he says.

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In addition to his sister-in-law, Reynolds lost his business manager, an ex-girlfriend, and his best friend. “It makes you question everything,” he says.

Such strikes can make anyone think that what is the matter. For Reynolds it was the opposite: “Every moment is so meaningful. Every relationship. The present moment matters right now.”

The album was named “Mercury” after the element’s reflectivity and chromatic beauty. “When I looked at mercury, it reflected in that way, that it was beautiful, but also unstable at times,” he says. “I really feel like ‘Mercury’ is at its core a very self-reflective record.”

Sam Riback, executive vice president and co-head of A&R at Interscope Geffen A&M, agrees: “I think this is clearly Dan and the band’s most personal work to date,” he says. “There were a lot of great songs that they made over a huge time period and they wanted to make sure their fan base got to experience all the stories they were telling.”

Unlike this spring’s European leg, Reynolds will drop off her four children at her home in Las Vegas for the North American tour, which began in Salt Lake City. He genuinely laughs at some sad dad moments from a few months back.

“It’s been a traveling circus. It’s been really tough. Throwing on long winding roads with kids and screaming kids in airplanes and coming from a show at 4 a.m. and kids jumping on you at 6 a.m. But I saved. ”

Imagine Dragons – consisting of guitarist Wayne Preach, bassist Ben Mackie and drummer Daniel Platzman – has just been the first band in history to have four certified diamonds – each with 10 million or more in sales and stream equivalents in the United States. reaches. A stunned Reynolds calls this the “fun number”.

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“I’ve honestly felt in my life that I don’t have the ability to have the right perspective on any of these,” he says. “It’s very mind boggling to me. There might be some people who can wrap their head around it. I don’t have the ability to do it. I hear I’m like, ‘Wow. I’m totally into it Don’t even know the meaning.'”

The latest single to cross the diamond threshold is “Thunder” from the 2017 album “Evolve”. Reynolds marvels at his humble roots: he wrote and recorded vocals for more than two hours at his home in Las Vegas, even in his voice to a crazy pitch in the parts included in the final song. manipulated. “If you listen closely with headphones on, you can hear kids screaming in the background,” he says.

On a larger scale, Imagine Dragons has always had a social impact beyond its music, raising funds and awareness in support of causes such as LGBTQ+ rights, the fight against pediatric cancer, and women’s empowerment. He recently added Ukraine to his list of concerns.

The band performed at the Save Ukraine telethon and during the European tour, Reynolds was rarely seen dedicating songs to the country without the Ukrainian flag. Imagine that the Dragons in Ukraine are huge and in 2018 the Olympic Stadium in Kyiv has been sold. Reynolds is also working with a team in Ukraine on a video game.

Reynolds recently spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Zoom – a meeting he called the “honor of a lifetime” – and joined a fundraiser for new ambulances to replace those lost in the war with Russia .

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“My main takeaway from our meeting was that they needed help. They needed help,” he says. “When we are in the year 2022 and there is a war and children are being killed, our headlines shift to nonsense. In fact one culture and one country are being destroyed.”

Adding Ukraine to Reynold’s list of active causes is part of the obligation he feels as a public figure. It’s also personal, like her work for the Tyler Robinson Foundation – inspired by meeting a pediatric cancer patient.

“My mantra is ‘Go exactly where your heart takes you, the path of least resistance.’ You can’t do everything. You can’t solve everything. So you go where your life is,” he says.


Mark Kennedy is here


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