With a new album arriving in time for the holiday weekend and a stadium tour kicking off in August, Imagine Dragons are having a fairly excellent summer so far.
Mercury Act II, out today (July 1st), is a continuation of the band’s previous project Mercury Act I. Together, the sister albums serve as an inspiring, heartbreaking ode to the relationships frontman Dan Reynolds has lost; while Mercury Act I (released in September 2021) details the initial shock that comes with death, Act II is an even more intimate gesture that further explores themes of loss and recovery.
Best showcased on the vulnerable track “They Don’t Know You Like I Do,” Reynolds sinks into a deep regret for all that he wished he could’ve done for his close friend before it was too late. In the same vein, “I Wish” details the soul-crushing remorse that comes with indescribable loss.
But the record is not without glimmering moments of hope, too. “It’s really about life and celebrating every day and remembering that it is finite and it can all be gone,” Reynolds tells Consequence, “And being present. I just hope it brings joy, above all, to people’s lives.”
The Rick Rubin-produced project was three years in the making, and Reynolds is more than ready to release these songs into the universe. “It’s been a long time coming… it’s one of those moments where you feel anxious, excited, nervous, and happy,” he says. “I think hopefully we’ll feel relief when it comes out, because we’ve been working on it for three years, and it’s one of those things that we have to let go of and let it in the world.”
On album release eve, between international tour stops — the band had just played the Open Air festival in Poland and was preparing to play Sweden’s Lollapalooza festival later in the day — Reynolds took some time to dig into Mercury Act II, his work with the LOVELOUD Foundation, dream collaborations and much more.
Give Mercury Act II a spin, and check out the full Q&A with Reynolds below.