When you think of Imagine Dragons, there isn’t a specific genre that can perfectly encapsulate their music to the core. With their new album, LOOM, they’ve pushed their boundaries even further from the pop-rock, hip-hop, alt-rock quintessential sounds that make up most of their best hits. It’s a compact album, barely a half-hour with 9 tracks and a bonus collab. Everyone’s heard of ‘Demons’ or ‘Believer’; any radio station would play it. But from their famous headbangers comes an album that’s more light-hearted, sentimental, and emotional to listen to, but still true to the Imagine Dragons brand.

Just starting with the album art, you have two silhouettes opposite each other, with what can only be a sunrise or a sunset in the centre. Whatever kind of sun it is should be up for interpretation. It’s cosmic and draws the eyes, and almost looks like it’s come from a production of the 3 Body Problem (an amazing series, by the way). At the same time, the album art begs the question of whether or not this is a beginning or an end, and throughout the tracklist, it seems the album art reveals more about the discography’s themes than expected.


LOOM starts with ‘Wake Up’ and sets an exciting and frenzied mood for the album, that it’s almost contradictory to call this album light. But when ‘Nice To Meet You’ plays, ‘Wake Up’ turns out to be a feint, with the former having a livelier beat and Dan Reynolds seemingly happy to sing about his relationships. Diving deeper into the lyricism of ‘Nice To Meet You’, Dan is actually more frustrated than happy. In an Instagram live, he reveals that the song is actually about the dating process, and how dating someone is almost like dating their friends, which Dan didn’t sign up for.





Then comes the album’s lead single, ‘Eyes Closed’. A rock and hip-hop fusion, the track gives LOOM a more sinister tone. You can hear the influences of ‘Believer’ and ‘Radioactive’, while still recognising how much more experimental the band’s gotten with their music. The big difference from their past hits was in the lyrics, because this time Dan reflects upon his past and sings about being reborn from the dark pits of his mind, and about the attempts to be a better person. It’s come to the point that it’s beginning to be easy to be better.




The next track ‘Take Me to the Beach’ is exactly what you’d expect: a lighter song that can loosely be interpreted as taking a break from the everyday toxicity in life. In the midst of it all is ‘In Your Corner’, a fan-favourite, coming with a sentimental and soulful colour that’s nothing but bittersweet. Here, Dan sings about regret and nostalgia, and the bitter mix it creates. It’s as if he feels bad for himself that he’s begging for answers that have long been left in the past.

‘Gods Don’t Pray’ sets a whole different mood for the album. Here, Imagine Dragons explores the loneliness of being at the top, and the cost of being a celebrity. At the same time, Dan speaks to the listeners that there may be no point in seeking help from those that stand on a pedestal, because they won’t empathise. For everything they’ve been through to get to the top, they’ve only ended up only having themselves.

‘Don’t Forget Me’, meanwhile, is a ballad that explores regret but also the reconciliation of the past. Dan is holding on and content in being just a memory, as long as he isn’t forgotten. Then comes ‘Kid’, a rock anthem that many have referenced as an homage to the Gorillaz. From here, it’s clear how the album art of being either a sunrise or sunset is seen in the progression of the tracklist, where one song juxtaposes the next, either through sound or through lyrics. With this pattern, the final track, ‘Fire In These Hills’, is a light pop-song with a saxophone accompaniment and encouraging lyrics.

Listening to LOOM is like listening to a culmination of the life and experiences of Imagine Dragons. But what’s touching is that here, they’re mostly grateful. There’s growth from past angst, and the comfort brought about their maturity in their music. Imagine Dragons looks back, sometimes with regret and longing, and other times with a grateful and positive outlook. LOOM brings more confidence and curiosity for the future, and explores the sweet era in life after getting out of a labyrinth.