Imagine Dragons. Photo by Michael Brooks.
Imagine Dragons, The Naked and Famous
Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, TN
Review by Ryne Hambright
Photos by Michael Brooks of Michael Brooks Photography
If an artist sells out a show it is encouraging. If an artist sells out a show with only one full length album it is impressive. If an artist sells out Nashville’s largest stage, under all of the circumstances above, it is insane. More than any other descriptor, insanity is the most fitting for both the success story that is Imagine Dragons as well as their show last week at Bridgestone Arena. Paired with opening act, The Naked and Famous the night was one for the ages (all ages, in fact). One of No Country’s newest additions, Michael Brooks, was on hand and captured some stunning moments from the show. Those photos, along with a full review, can be found by clicking the link below.
The Naked and Famous. Photo by Michael Brooks.
Originally from New Zealand but recent transplants to the City of Angels, The Naked and Famous started the night off on the right foot. Or the left foot, it was kind of hard to tell as both of mine were dancing along from the minute the house lights went down. The quintet, led by Thom Powers and Alisa Xayalith, bring to mind genre pioneer acts such as M83 and Metric. The melodies are mesmerizing and the hooks are infectious. Their arena-friendly sound is made for large platform venues such as Bridgestone and the experience of seeing them live in this capacity becomes completely immersive. The band played a well balanced mix of their debut album Passive Me, Aggressive You and recent follow-up In Rolling Waves before capping the night off with their gold-certified show stopper “Young Blood”.
After a lengthy set change, Imagine Dragons took the stage with the audience already on its feet. The Las Vegas four piece opened with “Fallen”, a non-single track that the crowd matched word for word with lead singer Dan Reynolds. One of the most impressive things about the band’s short but quickly expanding reportoire is their devout fan base and ability to connect. There were several instances where the band stopped to simply thank the audience for everything they had done for them and were quick to point out that they took none of it for granted. After his speech, Reynolds went into an a capella version of their first hit “It’s Time”.
Around the half way mark, the band changed things up a bit by covering Rush’s “Tom Sawyer”. The response was overwhelming as the band’s sonic style was a perfect match for the iconic Canadian rockers. Billboard Top 20 hits “Demons” and “Radioactive” were obvious standouts from the set as the energy level was tangible throughout the arena. After a quick encore, album closer “Nothing Left to Say” also closed out the night. No matter your opinion of the band, I recommend their live show on entertainment value alone. I was blown away by their heart felt performance, and their ability to still somehow make it feel somewhat intimate. I no longer just imagine dragons, I know them to be true.