There is such a thing as too much of a good thing, and that’s what’s going on with Imagine Dragons. Oversaturation is very real and that’s what’s happening with music fans and the band. While casual listeners are still very much in love with the band, those of us who have been listening avidly for years are more than a little worn out. So, with Evolve only being a year old, what does Imagine Dragons decide to do? Put out another album. The band’s newest record, Origins isn’t a bad record, but Imagine Dragons aren’t just at the risk of becoming stale any more, they’re just stale.
Origins isn’t without its merits. Let’s get that out of the way first. “Natural” is a nice song. It’s less annoying than “Thunder.” There’s lots of typical Imagine Dragons songs here that are typical at this point. They’re heavy on drums and bass with some accenting instruments and production stirred in. The band’s content with letting vocalist Dan Reynolds dominate on most of the songs, and rightfully so. Reynolds is charismatic and super-talented as both a writer and a performer. Songs like “Boomerang”, “Machine”, “Bad Liar”, “Cool Out”, and “Only” are all nice songs that will add to the band’s catalog. The problem is there’s also plenty of annoyances on this album. “Digital” is the worst song that I’ve heard of 2018. “Bullet in a Gun” is like Imagine Dragons mixed with Bob Marley if Bob Marley was terrible. And all of the bonus tracks at the end of the album shouldn’t have ever really seen the light of day with the exception of “Burn Out.”
Imagine Dragons would do well with some time off. 2012 me would have never said that, but we haven’t gotten a break from the band since then. They’ve been everywhere the past five years. They’ve been the biggest band in the world. That’s good. But now’s the time to step away for a bit. Before releasing a new album there was talk about them becoming the new Nickelback, now that the album is out there, that talk is getting louder. It’s time to take a well-deserved break for the band and come back and do something different in 2020 or early in 2021.