Foundation date: 2008
The country: USA
Town: Las Vegas
Dan Reynolds (vocals)
Photo: Imagine Dragons
Video: Imagine Dragons
Biography of Imagine Dragons
Imagine Dragons is an American band whose genre is difficult to define in one word. Thanks to the unique musical style, which reflects elements of rock and roll, indie rock, alternative movements and pop music, Dragons is so loved all over the world. The band currently has 4 members: frontman Dan Reynolds, bassist Ben Mackie, guitarist Wayne Sermon and drummer Dan Platzman.
History of creation
The founder of the band, Dan Reynolds, was born into a large, religious and very conservative family, in which the open expression of one’s emotions and feelings was not welcomed. An outlet for the creative boy was his passion for music, to which he devoted his whole life. At the age of six, he began to learn to play the piano, and at thirteen he sneaked up to the computer of his older brothers to write down sketches of his first songs.
Dan Reynolds – Imagine Dragons frontman
In 2008, the young man met drummer Andrew Tolman, who also studied at Brigham Young University. The guys quickly converged on the basis of the same musical tastes and decided to organize their own group. Soon they were joined by guitarist and vocalist Andrew Beck, keyboardist and part-time violinist Aurora Florence and bassist Dave Lamke.
Imagine Dragons before they became famous (2008)
The team decided to call Imagine Dragons, which is an anagram, the meaning of which is known only to the first members of the group. Of course, fans have a lot of theories, some of which are absolutely crazy options: “Aged Men’s Radio” (radio for older men), “Desiring a Mango” (wishing a mango), “A Gemini So Grand” (such huge twins). The original phrase is still kept secret, the musicians only claim that so many interesting versions have been born during this time that the original one will surely seem boring to fans.
The main stages of creativity
In 2008, the guys began rehearsals with enthusiasm, and after a few months they won the university music competition. In the same year, Imagine Dragons recorded their first single “Speak to me”, the release of which became the first step on the path to success.
Suddenly, Beck and Florence left the group, and Andrew Tolman, Reynolds’ old college friend, and his wife, Brittany, took their place. Later, the singer’s friend Daniel “Wayne” Sermon joined them, and the band moved from Utah to Las Vegas, Dan’s hometown, with a new line-up. There, the musicians rented a studio and started recording their debut album, while simultaneously playing in casinos and nightclubs.
The band started out playing venues in Las Vegas.
Their first notable success was a performance at the Bite of Las Vegas festival, where they replaced the band Train, who dropped out due to illness of the frontman. Nearly thirty thousand spectators who came to the concert warmly greeted the unknown group, and music critics burst into a stream of flattering reviews of their performance.
Imagine Dragons have received several local awards, including Best Album of 2011 by Vegas 7 and Best Local Indie Band by Las Vegas Weekly. They began to be invited to television, and soon the musicians signed a contract with Interscope Records.
By 2011, the Imagine Dragons line-up had changed.
By that time, they had already released three successful mini-albums and had material ready for the fourth. Prior to this, the musicians did not dare to start recording a full-fledged record and tested the ground, but the success of the next EP “Continued Silence” finally convinced them of the correctness of the chosen direction.
The Radioactive single became the absolute leader in the world music charts, was nominated for fifteen awards (won four) and received diamond status in the United States based on sales results for 2012.
All this time, the composition of the team has been constantly changing. Lemke was replaced by Ben McKee, and the Tolmans were replaced by Dan Platzman and Teresa Flamio. The latter only stayed for half a year, and after her departure, Imagine Dragons turned into a quartet, in which only Dan Reynolds, the ideological inspirer and founder of the group, remained from the old members.
Imagine Dragons with Dan Platzman and Teresa Flamio
Frequent rotations did not affect the quality of the musical material, and in September 2012 the full-length album Night Visions was released, produced by Alex Da Kid. Even before its release, two singles from this record hit the prestigious Billboard list, and the video for the song “It’s Time” was nominated for an MTV award. In parallel, the musicians recorded soundtracks for the films The Hunger Games, Divergent and Transformers, as well as music for the FIFA 13 video game.
Unsurprisingly, the first 80,000 copies of the band’s long-awaited album sold out within the first week, an incredible number for debutants. Night Visions was recognized as the best rock album in the United States and took top positions in all world charts. As a result of sales, the disc became gold in seven countries, platinum – in fourteen.
Album Night Visions conquered listeners around the world
In support of the album, Imagine Dragons went on a grandiose world tour, which was a resounding success. Already at the very beginning of the tour, the musicians began to create material for the new collection, recording demo versions of new songs in between performances.
The artists were inspired by the impressions received during their travels to different countries and continents, which could not but affect their work. By the end of the tour, they had about fifty different songs ready, from which they had to choose the foundation for the next album.
Imagine Dragons since the album “Smoke + Mirrors”
In the fall of 2014, fans were able to appreciate the single “I Bet My Life” from the new collection (Dane DeHaan starred in the video for the song), and at the end of the year, the release of the next album “Smoke + Mirrors” was widely announced on social networks. In February 2015, the disc went on official sale, and in the summer the group went on another large-scale tour, during which they visited Russia.
Despite successful tours and good record sales, Smoke + Mirrors failed to repeat the success of the previous one and was attacked by music critics. Reynolds himself understood that the musicians needed to take a breather, but already at the end of 2016 he began to intrigue fans with messages about the group’s new album.
According to the already knurled pattern, before the release of the record, Imagine Dragons released several successful singles, one of which (Believer) was shot with a video featuring Dolph Lundgren.
When the interest of the fans reached its peak, the experimental album Evolve saw the light. The collection spent six months in the top ten of Billboard and was twice nominated for a Grammy. At the same time, many critics called it the weakest album of the summer of 2017 and scolded it for its complete lack of harmony and poverty of themes.
Album cover «Evolve»
Collaborations with other artists
- “Radioactive in the dark” – Imagine Dragons ft. fall out Boy
- “Sucker for Pain” – Imagine Dragons ft. Lil Wayne, Wiz Khalifa, Logic, Ty Dolla Sign, X Ambassador
- Night Visions (2012)
- Smoke + Mirrors (2015)
- Evolve (2017)
Imagine Dragons now
In the fall of 2017, the team went on a tour of America, and in the summer of 2018 they planned to visit Moscow and Kiev. In March 2018, the performers recorded a video for the song “Next to Me”.