Continued Silence EP by Imagine Dragons

The booming, detonating lead track, “Radioactive,” comes to represent everything from Imagine Dragons’ Continued Silence EP. Released in 2012 after a string of earlier works, the EP carves into the soul with a heavy rock attitude, and like the cover art, breathes life into the fictional, twilighting ruins of the future. Each song feels all-encompassing, whole, and never fails to hit the right note, filled with as much action as soul.

While grand, the music also forges a deeply personal connection. “On Top of the World,” the rousing, feel-good anthem for the masses, breathes like a ray of sun, while the more complex “Round and Round” spins around a hollow core. A mix of milky, electric/acoustic guitar and pounding drums, it moves in the same direction as its story. From neverending joy to grief, there’s something very human about the energy that pours from the EP, as if the music celebrates more than individual thoughts and dreams: instead, what it means to be young and hopeful.

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That doesn’t mean the EP doesn’t have its fill of sadness. In fact, loneliness is in the middle of the centrifuge, fueling the apocalyptic breakdown of “Radioactive,” a sci-fi era tribute to dystopia and devastation, where amid the explosions, the lonely sits untouched. The other EP’s heavyweight, “Demons,” is only wiser, sadder, and as grippingly honest. A startlingly beautiful ballad, the song is illuminated with twinkling lights, and vocals layered in divinity. Every word matters, where the song pulls away the grief, the guilt, leaving you born anew.

Lead singer Dan Reynolds’ sharp, hotblooded lyrics guide each song, and at the heart of everything, an insistent, active rock beat. The knee-slapping, hand-clapping, folksy sweet “It’s Time” features Reynolds’ ernest voice, as it feels like things are changing, forming something greater and new. While on the other hand, the final track “My Fault” begins underwater. A knocking sound is first heard like a child at the door; as the song progresses, every trouble is left with open arms, and all things come full circle. It’s a cycle, a journey, that brings dawn to the dusk. The silence has been broken.

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