Imagine Dragons are undoubtedly one of the biggest bands in the world. With countless singles that dominate the radio, they’re always on top, and often deliver some dynamic albums. However, they seem to have pushed this next one a bit too quickly. Imagine Dragons feel rushed in Origins, their latest record that seems to be lacking their typical character.
While it does sound a bit rushed, Origins isn’t intrinsically bad. It has some great stuff going on, like opening track ‘Natural.’ The big, dark anthem brings a huge chorus with it, the dynamic song really getting the record off to a convicted start as Dan Reynolds angrily chants “Natural / A beating heart of stone / You gotta be so cold to make it in this world.“ Imagine Dragons have never stepped away from really getting in tune with their emotions, which comes out very nicely in songs like the soulful ‘Stuck‘ and the heartfelt ‘Bad Liar.’ Even if Origins doesn’t live up to what they’re normally capable of, it at least has some integrity. The band even take some risks, like with the dynamic ‘Bullet In A Gun‘ and its nice melodies and angry bridge, and the raucous ‘Digital‘ the really makes a statement about how we focus on society.
Origins is like what people who don’t like Imagine Dragons think every Imagine Dragons song sounds like, and that’s not a great thing. Tracks like ‘Boomerang‘ and ‘Machine‘ are nice little pop tracks with some energy to them, but not enough to really make them stand out. There’s a whole slew of songs that are all pretty emotional but just don’t feel fleshed out enough to really make an impact, like ‘Cool Out‘ or ‘West Coast.’ Even ‘Zero,‘ as inoffensive as it is, just doesn’t have its big moment. Closing track ‘Love‘ ends the record on a calming note, but even still doesn’t hit an emotional high that would really have tied this album together. A lot of Origins feels like it’s only touching the surface and never quite gets where it wants to be.
Imagine Dragons feel rushed in Origins, really only getting to the surface of the emotions they try to get out. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with the record: it’s an easy, enjoyable listen. All the same, it feels like there’s not really anything to take away from it like there have been in past records from the band. The band’s last album - 2017’s Evolve - feels like a huge step above this one. Perhaps they need to sit back and take some time before the next record instead of just jumping straight into it, because the effects do show.
Favorite Track: Natural
Least Favorite Track: Boomerang
Rating: 70 / 100
Stream or buy Origins on Apple Music, and follow our 2018 Playlist on Spotify: