Imagine Dragons’ rapid ascent continues at last night’s Hard Rock Cafe show
Thu, Sep 6, 2012 (11:28 a.m.)
Photo: Corlene Byrd
It’s been a big week for the Las Vegas-bred pop-rock group Imagine Dragons. The band not only released its first full-length album, Night Visions on Tuesday, but also secured the No. 1 spot on iTunes and kick-started its North American tour with a hometown send-off at the Hard Rock Cafe on the Strip. And the heirs to the Vegas pop-music throne carried the torch high as they played to a sold-out Wednesday night crowd.
Sonically, Night Visions, which Imagine Dragons performed in its entirety, melds ’80s-inspired nu wave with folk, tribal drumming and chanted gang vocals to create a unique and catchy sound. Though the set had some slight technical difficulties—guitarist Wayne Sermon blew out his amp at one point—the quartet (aided by Ryan Walker, a touring multi-instrumentalist and the band's tour manager) sounded ready for the big time.
The tightly produced performance boomed louder than the giant bass drums upon which the band frequently pounded. The Dragons still have a long way to go to reach the heights of Las Vegas pioneers The Killers, but they’ve already come far since their days as regular performers at O’Sheas.
The band, now based in LA, dedicated current single “It's Time” to Las Vegas, and frontman Dan Reynolds looked comfortable among a sea of friendly faces. It felt like an encouraging way to start a new tour, and the next chapter in Imagine Dragons’ exciting, expanding story.