Q (UK) - - Awards 2018 -

ORI­GINS KIDI­NAKORNER/IN­TER­SCOPE, OUT NOW Las Ve­gas band’s gleam­ing fourth al­bum hides a trou­bled heart.

The go-big-or-go-home ap­proach has paid off for Imag­ine Drag­ons, but their arena-ready an­thems are re­ally just a su­per-sized stick­ing plas­ter. For all its grand mu­si­cal ges­tures, the fourth al­bum from the most streamed band on the planet is a ve­hi­cle for singer Dan Reynolds to work through his strug­gles with de­pres­sion and in­se­cu­rity: peel away the hy­per­mod­ern pop wrap­per of Nat­u­ral, and you’re left with the sound of a man des­per­ately try­ing to come up for air. It fol­lows the mil­lion-dol­lar for­mula laid down on 2017’ s Evolve a lit­tle too closely – you’re never more than 30 sec­onds away from a hic­cup­ing, hip-hop-in­flu­enced vo­cal or a crash­ing cho­rus. But as emo­tional Tro­jan Horses go, few do it bet­ter. DAVE EVERLEY Lis­ten To: Nat­u­ral | Ma­chine | Bad Liar

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