Artist: imagine dragons
Venue: The Fillmore, Detroit
Date: March 1
With a chart-topping debut album and a pair of top five alternative singles, Imagine Dragons have every reason to be, as the band's song says, "on top of the world." So there was an understandable exuberance to the Las Vegas group's concert in Detroit, a 14-song celebration of success that nimbly straddled the line between pop energy and alt-rock edge.
What the show confirmed, however, was that Imagine Dragons' connection runs deeper than such hits as "It's Time" and "Radioactive." The band, after all, released several EPs before last year's full-length debut, "Night Visions," and it wasn't afraid to dig into that catalog. The quartet even started the concert with deeper cuts like "Round and Round" and "Amsterdam," also tapping fare like the "Night Visions" hidden track "Rocks" and the thickly textured Spotify bonus "Cha-Ching (Till We Grow Older)"-all greeted with singalongs as enthusiastic as any of the album's betterÂ-known songs.
Pushed by a tight, kinetic opening set by Australia's Atlas Genius, Imagine Dragons spiced most of their songs with fresh, atmospheric openings and segues, while mulleted frontman Dan Reynolds spent much of his non-singing time banging on an arsenal of percussion instruments around the stage, including a large Taiko drum that dominated the set. Reynolds and guitarist Wayne Sermon offered a brief moment of quietude during "30 Lives," but Imagine Dragons, like the crowd, really came to party, superseding Reynolds' earnest lyricism with the anthemic choruses of "Tiptoe" and the African highlife flavors of "Underdog" and "On Top of the World." By that time, the crowd was either surfing or batting around beach balls tossed out by crew members.
Toward the end Reynolds promised the band would be back "very soon." There's no reason to expect the reception won't be even greater when that time comes.