Imagine Dragons: Evolve review – lifeless electronic-tinged arena rock | Music

Las Vegas’s Imagine Dragons are known for making stadium pop-rock that’s part-Foo Fighters tribute, part-Foster the People, occasionally embracing a Mumfords-style twang, a nu-metal riff or some hip-hop bounce. Despite singles such as Radioactive (695m YouTube views and counting) and a No 1 album in the UK with 2015’s Smoke + Mirrors, they remain faceless – something which is only likely to continue as they channel an on-trend, electronic sound for this third outing. Opener I Don’t Know Why is all stripped-back synths and awkward mid-tempo beats, while Whatever It Takes was written with a sports highlights package in mind (“I love the adrenaline in my veins”, wails frontman Dan Reynolds, before chart pop’s current obligatory chorus of “woah-ohs” enters). Elsewhere, there are occasional hallmarks of old: Walking the Wire ventures into stadium lighter-swaying territory, while Start Over is essentially a club remix of Africa by Toto. Evolve sounds, almost impressively so, as though it’s been created with telly music coordinators in mind – and few others besides.

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