During the last five years, Imagine Dragons have become one of the biggest bands in the world.
Their emotionally-charged, radio-friendly stone anthems like Radioactive as well as Sucker For Pain possess won Grammy Awards, number 1 albums and a scarily devoted fanbase.
But behind closed doors, the actual band’s frontman Dan Reynolds was struggling with severe depressive disorders.
Things came to a go on their last world trip. Playing 110 dates within 42 countries on 5 continents left the vocalist “numb”.
“It came to a place where I didn’t come with an option, ” he informs the BBC. “It had been lose my family and shed my life or seek assist. ”
After the band’s last concert of the tour inside Amsterdam last February, the particular star told his bandmates he was taking a year away to tackle the condition, that has plagued him since child years.
“When I was younger, at school, I would just let it move, and ride out the miles and the peaks and the pros and cons, ” he says.
“Then I tried medication also it was too scary for me personally, because I felt enjoy it was going to change the music.
So last year, he “went to a therapist and lay down and basically confronted it head on for the very first time”.
Having decided not to get antidepressants, his treatment required “a more holistic route” than before – changing their diet, cutting out sugar and also practicing yoga and relaxation.
The latter, in particular, “has been huge” for the performer, who says he has trouble “quieting” his brain.
Reynolds has been supported through the last year through his wife, fellow music performer Aja Volkman, and bandmate Wayne Sermon, whom he is known since childhood.
“We’re brothers, so if he’s not really in a good place, after that non-e of us are, inches says Sermon.
The guitar player admits everyone in the music group has “demons that came out” after their ascent in order to fame – including their own issues with trust and “questioning people’s motives”.
“When if you’re under a microscope, it can magnify all the problems you needed before, ” he states, “But I don’t wish to be to be down about it, simply because I feel like we’ve emerge better people. All of us. very well
‘Opening the blinds’
All those changes are the foundation of Think about Dragons’ new album Progress.
The artwork shows a runner form ascending from a host to eternal darkness to one of sunshine and colour, while the songs is inventive and lively – especially when compared to the claustrophobic onslaught of their last document.
“Smoke + Mirrors ended up being super-angsty” admits Reynolds. “This album is a celebration associated with opening the blinds and also the light shining through. micron
On the lead single, Believer, he writes about his own transformation while acknowledging: “My life, my love, the drive, it came from discomfort. ”
“I was raised within a really conservative household along with carried a heavy guilty mind with me because of religion, inch he explains. “Letting proceed of that was really freeing in addition to wonderful. But I’ve additionally learned to be happy for the points I learned from it as well as grateful for the love which i found.
“If it was not for all of those things working in the precise way they did, Imagine Dragons would cease to exist. ”
The actual seventh of nine kids, Reynolds was raised in a stringent Mormon household. Aged nineteen, he volunteered to become a missionary in Nebraska for two many years, proselytizing for the church and also helping drug addicts.
In the return, he enrolled to analyze music at the Mormon-run Brigham Young University in Ut, but dropped out to contact form Imagine Dragons with Perorata and two of his class mates from the prestigious Berklee University of Music in Birkenstock boston.
In the beginning, they took any kind of gig they could get, actually opening for a mime in a nearby shopping centre. 1 regular booking at a nearby casino saw them actively playing six-hour sets three times per week, mixing original material along with crowd-pleasing covers.
Their large break came in 2010 whenever roots rock band Train picked up of a local festival. Along with just half an hour’s notice, Imagine Dragons had been promoted to the main phase and played for twenty six, 000 people.
Within a yr, they had signed to Interscope Records and started focus on their debut album, Evening Visions.
Such as fellow Las Vegas rock band The particular Killers (who are handled by Reynolds’ older sibling, Robert), the group straddle the divide between rock and roll and pop, embellishing their own fist-pumping choruses with the smooth textures and throbbing tempos of dance music.
It can no surprise, then, that they’re mostly of the rock acts to score industrial success at a time when appear and hip-hop dominate typically the charts.
“One of the factors we called our group Imagine Dragons is so did not have any boundaries, ” says Reynolds. “We created music which was all over the map because all of us didn’t want people to anticipate power chords on my acoustic guitar or a simple pop track every time.
“We wanted often the leash to be gone as well as for us to be able to run outrageous in the field. ”
Typically the band’s eager eclecticism offers irritated purists (“pop should get better, rock deserves much better, ” sniffed one review) but it makes perfect sense within the streaming era, when followers flit between genres on the whim.
On Evolve, their particular sound has also become slimmer – free from the sonic, as well as the emotional, baggage of the last record.
A music called Yesterday is particularly eye-opening, with Reynolds singing just like a bluesman wandering through the dustbowl, over a gregarious piano stomp.
“We really reached in to our roots of being influenced by the more eccentric tracks from the Beatles and Full, ” says Reynolds.
Often the band were propelled from their comfort zone by signing up an array of top-shelf producers, such as Lorde’s right-hand man Fran Little, and Swedish duet Mattman & Robin, that have worked for Britney Spears and Taylor Swift.
These people even got some aid from Justin Tranter, among pop’s most in-demand authors, whose credits include Justin Bieber’s Sorry and DNCE’s Cake by the Ocean.
“He understood my trepidation in working with another writer, inches says Reynolds.
“I’ve in no way done it before — but he knew i had to write all my personal lyrics and he was a fantastic sounding board, melodically. very well
The singer is thrilled for fans to hear the actual record (“it feels like Xmas is coming”), especially following the group’s year-long hiatus.
“A lot of our fans truly invest their life directly into this band, ” this individual says. “They come to each and every show, they get tattoo designs, their whole wall is actually lined in Imagine Dragons things.
“And I have it, because I was that child, you know? That’s what Ciel was to me when I was obviously a little kid. Kurt seemed to be everything to me.
“So Personally i think a responsibility to all of the testers who invest their period into Imagine Dragons… a duty to be honest and tell them exactly what my heart says. micron
That’s why he decided to talk about his depression and to tackle it in interviews.
“I was really shy about talking out, ” he claims. “Humanity doesn’t like to recognize their frailty. We prefer to only acknowledge our advantages. But I think it’s important to discuss it. ”
“It’s such as the song Believer, ” provides Sermon. “Of course, every single human wants to avoid soreness at all cost – but the truth is, that is one time we really grow. inch