As the sun began to set on Onondaga Lake in Syracuse, New York at the St Joseph Health Amphitheater, Imagine Dragons lit up the stage. The four-man band from Las Vegas, Nevada definitely know how to engage with their audience and put on one hell of a show. The band has been a powerhouse of mainstream hits since 2012 with their first successful single, “It’s Time” off of their Night Vision album. However, it was the song “Radioactive” from this same album that solidified them as a force to be reckoned with in the music industry. They opened the show with “Radioactive”, the song which, incidentally, holds the record for spending the longest time on the Billboards Top 100, 87 weeks.
This group has the ability to bring not only amazing chart-topping hits to the masses but to bring the audience further into their show. Their set had a unique addition which was an extension from the stage that allowed lead singer, Dan Reynolds, to actually get further into the crowd in the pit, virtually surrounding himself. He took advantage of this as well. The energy that this band put out into the crowd is literally palpable. Reynolds spent hours dancing and singing, engaging the crowd and really putting himself into the show.
The crowd loved the constant stream of music, giant balloons, and multicolored confetti showers that where like blizzards that could barely be seen through. The band while feeding energy into the crowd seem to have some of the most laid back, mellow fans on the planet. Even in the pit, where fans were the closest to the band, there was no pushing or shoving, and everyone seemed to respect each other’s space. The crowd was just there to have a good time, dancing and singing along to their favorite songs. It was amazing and gratifying to see a record number of families with young children attending this show.
During a short acoustic set, Reynolds placed himself with a small orchestra in the center of the amphitheater. Then proceeded to engage in every security guard’s worst nightmare: walking into the crowd up and around into the lawn seats, singing “I Bet My Life.” This band’s response to their excited fans makes it obvious that they know where their bread is buttered and there are none of the overblown egos and super star attitude to be found in this band.
Humility may very well indeed be one of the hallmark traits of Imagine Dragons; their songs with catchy rhythms and deeply felt lyrics reach every person in a very individual way. There is something about their music that has the power to touch souls. During the song “Demons,” Reynolds spoke out about the stigma on depression and anxiety and gave words of encouragement to those in the audience suffering from these very misunderstood afflictions. He shared his own fight with them and encouraged fans to seek help, as he had.
The band closed out the show with “Believer” without the aid of an encore. They truly put on an incredible performance and touched every single member of the audience. They gave the audience a night of pure entertainment with a touch of magic that no one in attendance will soon be forgetting.