Imagine Dragons Takes A Beating, Dan Reynolds Responds
Step aside Nickelback… there’s a new punching bag in rock music this week.
Imagine Dragons is taking a beating for their halftime performance this week at a college football championship game.
“How can this band be this famous?,” asked Washington Post critic Chris Richards.
“Imagine Dragons wishes it were Queen, but only in concept. There is no sex, no humour and no chest hair to be found in any Imagine Dragons song.
“If there’s any friction to it at all, it resides between the anti-authoritarian platitudes and the virulent melodies. This is music that makes you feel like it’s watching you.”
Wait, he’s not done.
“Instead of expressing its humanity, this is music that aims only to fulfill the expectations of an audience that doesn’t really know what it should expect anymore,” Richards opined.
At Spin, writer Anna Gaca called Imagine Dragons’ music “aggressively unpleasant” and declared that the band is “somewhere far beyond terrible.”
Reviewing the halftime show, Gaca wrote: “Every song has the same punishing, squelching rhythmic force that likewise made Taylor Swift’s “…Ready For It?” sound ready-made for college football and dreadful to actually listen to.
"The lyrics, a composite of motivational platitudes and pseudo-dramatic yelps, barely merit repeating, if only because [Dan] Reynolds seems so willing to do that himself.”
Imagine Dragons’ performance also got slammed by Gary Holt of Slayer.
“PLEASE no more calling this s**ttist band on earth ‘rock,’ they are simply the crappiest excuse for a band I’ve ever heard,” he shared in a since-deleted Instagram post. “Uggggh. Just awful.
“I don’t usually enjoy slagging musicians but they can’t really call themselves that.”
The criticism didn’t go unnoticed by Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds.
“I woke up this morning and was looking through Twitter and there was so many hateful, hard things for me to read,” he said in a video message shared on social media.
He admitted the attacks made him feel “really low.”
Reynolds explained: “You go out and you’re doing your best in the world and you just get beat down. I was just tired and wanted to run away, to be honest.”
The singer said he wanted to set a better example for his children. “We all face some sort of bullying on social media. The last thing we can do is give those people the power over you. So I’m not going to.”
Reynolds vowed to “continue to make art and music that I’m proud of, that we write … and continue to sing it in the way that I sing it.
“And people who get with it will, and those that are angry and wish me death upon myself because of the music I create, I hope that one day… anyway, I love you all.”
Plenty of rock fans piled on via social media – but Imagine Dragons also had plenty of defenders.
behind the scenes look at imagine dragons song writing pic.twitter.com/4MRrxMvjV2— Mason English (@NationOfMason) January 8, 2019
imagine dragons constantly advocates for social justice, LGBTQ+ rights, &mental health, & their lyrics are usually self-empowering. calling them “the worst band ever” just bc they have a certain sound & some college football fans didnt like their halftime show is an ice cold take https://t.co/wnii5ZNBT1— stephen (@alsostephenking) January 9, 2019
"That's a great song" is probably something Imagine Dragons doesn't hear very often.— Sarge The Destroyer (@BastardProphet) January 9, 2019
Y’all know how much I love my rock n roll. But let me tell you. If rock n roll is what people are interested in, then people would actually be buying rock records. Stop trying to crucify imagine dragons for being something that actually makes a living.— Aja Volkman (@RealAjaVolkman) January 10, 2019
I don’t need to hear or see Imagine Dragons in my lifetime again— Cameron Magruder (@ScooterMagruder) January 8, 2019
Don't like imagine dragons? Fine— Ǝ⭕️ Shubhra ⭕️E (@thorsdragons) January 8, 2019
Don't like their performance? Fine
But👏 stop 👏hating👏 on 👏band members👏 or 👏people 👏who 👏 actually 👏like👏 the band👏
Imagine Dragons is a better band than Nickelback but I feel like Nickelback's fans loved Nickelback in a deeper way than Imagine Dragons will ever be loved by theirs— Todd in the Shadows (@ShadowTodd) January 8, 2019