Next To Me- Imagine Dragons Review

Hello Angels!

So, I’m a huge Imagine Dragons fan so when I saw that this had been released, I squealed a little. Taken from their most recent album, it has a different tone from their last few singles, namely Believer and Warrior (two massive singles that differ entirely to this).

I think it’ll divide fans: the more fierce lyrics in past singles has what people have grown used to and I know I go to them for when I need the confidence boost. This on the other hand is more tender lyrically, showing vulnerability: a trend in singles this year apparently (which you’ll know about if you read my last music review which I’ll leave here).

The beginning few seconds packs the punch we’re used to, the drums creating a heartbeat sound which sound like they’ll lead us into battle (again, what we’ve gotten used to), to then be toned down by the acoustic guitar. Usually, I’d not think they’d merge well, but the contrast between them interests me. There’s a fierce edge, but there’s also a softer side, and seeing as the song is seemingly about love and the downsides of loving the singer (stop being silly Dan Reynolds, you’re lovely). This being said: the downside is, that for the first few listens, that contrast was all I could really focus on. I wasn’t listening to the music, I was too drawn in by all of the contrasting elements, which if separate would work perfectly, but when thrown together, it’s just distracting.

That is a sad point, because lyrically. this song is so incredibly beautiful. The lyrics hit me to the core once I let them sink in, so the fact that they may go overlooked actually physically hurts me. Reynolds voice is full of emotion, but at the same time it’s complex because he sounds almost distant, adding another layer, but this is a layer that works and I was crying out for throughout the whole of the song. This is where the divide comes in: for some people there may be too much going on to be listening to the lyrics properly, meaning that it will go over peoples heads completely and they may just write the song off. The lyrics relate to me a lot:

“Thank you for taking a chance on me, I know it isn’t easy, but I hope to be worth it.”

Look at those lyrics. Just one line taken from an incredibly well written song. They pack a punch, especially in the flow of the song where they’re sang almost acapella. The thing is, the rest of the song is as powerful, but it gets drowned out: especially in the end with the random high notes that come in, making me feel like I’m in some dramatic opera or a battle on The Voice. Yes, those notes are hella impressive, but they seem out of place.

The band is incredibly talented: all instruments are played with precision and with thought, but they don’t always mesh well together and I don’t think this was the song to experiment on… To me, it should have been stripped back, if emotional layers are on show, a song should be more simplistic. I really hope there’s an acoustic version somewhere, because that’s what this song deserves: for the story and the lyrics to be heard without the unnecessary drama.

I’d name each musician one by one and go in and explain the elements I love but how they don’t work together in full, but just look up the amount of members: I have to stop rambling at some point or this would be a small novel and not a review. But listen to it and separate each instrument if you can. They’re incredibly well played, but together it sounds more like a battle than trying to put a message across. I get that the song can be seen as dramatic and it’s a heart-wrenching song and they wanted it to stand out, but let the lyrics and the music do the talking toned down. Not everything has to be dramatic.

I respect the band a lot, and I had high hopes for this song. Do I love it? In a way yes, despite all of that, I do because those lyrics kill me, but I’m also slightly disappointed by it because it had the potential to be something amazing and even more beautiful. If it had been stripped back a little, I think it may have been one of their best.

Stay safe and stay happy, Angels!❤️

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6 Replies to “Next To Me- Imagine Dragons Review”

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