Imagine Dragons
Night Visions


2.5
average

Review

by SowingSeason STAFF
September 5th, 2012 | 376 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: So polished that it slips right in one ear and out the other.

The mandolin introduction to Imagine Dragons’ ‘It’s Time’ was the soundtrack to many a radio-rock goers’ summer, and with its unique progression building to one of the year’s most unforgettable choruses, nobody could be blamed for eagerly awaiting the band’s first full-length album. If it delivered upon the promise of ‘It’s Time’ and Imagine Dragon’s earlier 2012 counterpart, the EP Continued Silence, then there would be little doubt that we’d be staring at one of the best and most unabashedly mainstream rock albums of the year. With genre influences ranging from hip-hop to folk, along with an affinity for peculiar instrumental/synth inclusions, it was easy to see why Night Visions took its place among the year’s most anticipated records. Unfortunately, the majority of the band’s work here lacks the pleasing aesthetic qualities of their already famous single, allowing the virtually incalculable momentum that they’ve ascertained to be squandered on a commonplace stadium rock album.

It’s not that Night Visions isn’t listenable, in fact it’s quite the contrary. Every song is offered upon a gold platter of lively hooks, huge drums, and hand claps – but at the heart of every grandiose sonic expedition is a very repetitive structure that fails to stand on the same level as the production. All of this results in something that sounds overblown...too epic for what it actually is. ‘Fallen’ is a prime instance, employing a heavy drum beat, echoed vocals, and a chorus that soars to ridiculous heights for not being very catchy. Night Visions does manage to put its best foot forward first, but it’s a quality that can be mostly attributed to four Continued Silence tracks being presented within the first five songs. It’s rather unfortunate that they must rely on a prior EP to create their debut LP’s best moments, but nevertheless they are strong. ‘Radioactive’ thrives on an offbeat verse consisting of the line “this is it, the apocalypse” and a triumphant chorus that announces its arrival via the passage, “welcome to the new age.” Obviously, ‘It’s Time’ anchors Night Visions with its infectious melody, but there is yet another track that rivals the former for best song on the album. ‘Demons’ sways along to a slow tempo, crooning “it’s where my demons hide” overtop of an intense, groovy rhythm. So even though there are gems early on to propel Night Visions listeners towards optimism, in the end it is these same tracks that cast a shadow over the remainder of the album that, to put it delicately, exists as cushy pillow padding (or as it is more commonly referred to, “filler”). With the exception of the curiously meandering nine-minute-long “Nothing Left to Say/Rocks”, everything across the record’s latter half is painstakingly run of the mill – a complete contradiction of what this band aims to be.

For all the dust that Imagine Dragons manage to blast off the shelves with Night Visions, it settles all too eagerly in a drab, forgettable fashion. Pomp and frills abound, everything about the album aims to sound slick and streamlined – like audible chocolate. But underneath all the bells and whistles lie a collection of disappointingly boring blueprints, consisting of plain instrumental progressions and choruses that carry themselves with the weight of an anthem but sound like they are spread way too thin for their own good. There are a lot of cosmetics present to cover up the band’s shortcomings, but not even the most epic posturing and glossy production can hide this record’s blemishes.



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user ratings (479)
Chart.
2.7
average
other reviews of this album
SuaveDino (3.5)
Imagine Dragons have exploded onto the scene with "Night Visions." The band adds an unexpected touc...

teslabarrier (1)
indie trash...

I want to see Jigglypuff fuck the shit out of a Gyarados (2.5)
Repetitive Gimmicky and annoying at times...

H. (2.5)
A solid first half can't make up for the absolute snooze-fest that is the rest of the album....


Comments:Add a Comment 
SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


16922 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

A rather unceremonious 200th review if you ask me

Digging: Low Roar - 0

Drsmith4
September 5th 2012


1719 Comments


Should've switched your 199 and 200 choices.

But hey, congrats!

CrownOfMagnets
September 5th 2012


2332 Comments


alternative/indie has been going to shit lately i think. I feel too many bands are jumping on the "let's incorporate electronic music to our sound" bandwagon and a lot of indie now seems really stale and recycled. at least that's what it's like when I listen to alternative radio.

Brostep
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


3545 Comments


Nice review and congrats on your 200th. It's a shame this album isn't great, I was looking forward to it...

Digging: Nicki Minaj - The Pinkprint

mgeorge7
September 5th 2012


23 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

you mention a song called "fallen" in your review... which track number is that?

TooLateToGoBack
September 5th 2012


1780 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

The electronic elements really put me off this :/

People on iTunes seem to be loving this, though.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


16922 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

you mention a song called "fallen" in your review... which track number is that?


The track listing here appears to be wrong...there are two more songs after "Nothing Left to Say" called "Working Man" and "Fallen", at least according to itunes.

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
September 5th 2012


20158 Comments


Another good review Sowing. Prolly won't check this out tho.

Digging: Johann Sebastian Bach - Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 in D major, BWV 1050

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
September 5th 2012


20158 Comments


Such a chessy band name.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


16922 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Thanks Atari

For the record, I downloaded this anyway. I am a sucker for overblown glam rock. Demons is such a good song.

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
September 5th 2012


20158 Comments


Hmmm...is it streaming?

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


16922 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Not that I know of...it's fairly cheap on iTunes but (even though this is a terrible way to look up music) you can find every single song on youtube.

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


16922 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sENM2wA_FTg
It's Time

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81bU2ls3V6M
Demons

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eu-xFvLaE68
Radioactive

My three favorites so far, in order of how much I like them.


Atari
Contributing Reviewer
September 5th 2012


20158 Comments


Cool, I'll check these out in a bit. And I look up music all the time on youtube : P

ProjectFreak
September 5th 2012


1443 Comments


Radio 104.5 would literally not stop playing It's Time...I grew quite sick of it. Solid review, and happy 200, but I'm not exactly planning to check this out.

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
September 5th 2012


20158 Comments


I'm old so I don't listen to the radio and I've never heard 'It's Time'.
Not bad but I'm guessing this band will get a bunch of hate like Mumford and Sons did.

MO
September 5th 2012


19078 Comments


nice congrats on the 200 sowing

Eko
September 5th 2012


2119 Comments


a friend of mine is totally into this and keeps tweeting about it, guess I'll pass

congrats on 200

Eko
September 5th 2012


2119 Comments


hey that was my 2000th comment

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
September 5th 2012


16922 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

congrats

yo eko I could see you liking Demons. At least try that song, and 'It's Time' if you haven't already heard it (chances are you have)



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