In 2008, lead singer Dan Reynolds joined drummer Andrew Tolman at Brigham Young University where they were both students. Reynolds and Tolman combined Andrew Beck, Dave Lemke, and Aurora Florence to play guitar, bass, and piano each for their band. Their name is an anagram for a phrase only known to members of the band, that Reynolds said each member passed. The group released an extensive play titled “Speak to Me” that year. Beck and Florence would also leave the band’s lineup that year. In 2009, Tolman picked a longtime high school bud Wayne Sermon, who had graduated from Berklee College of Music to play guitar. Tolman later recruited his wife, Brittany Tolman, to sing backup and play keyboard, and the band began to perform shows together again. Lemke split from the band, later on, leading Sermon to hire another Berklee music student, Ben McKee, to accompany the band as their bassist and complete the list. The band accumulated a large audience in their hometown of Provo, Utah, before the members relocated to Las Vegas, the hometown of Dan Reynolds, where the band recorded and released their first three EPs.
The band published lengthened plays titled “Hell and Silence” and “Imagine Dragons” in 2010, both recorded at Battle Born Studios, in Las Vegas. In 2011 they went back to the studio. The third EP, “It’s Time”, was created before they signed a record contract. They received their first big opportunity when Train’s frontman Pat Monahan became sick just previous to the Bite of Las Vegas Festival 2009. Imagine Dragons were asked to fill in and played to a crowd of more than 26,000 people. Local awards including “Best CD of 2011”, “Best Local Indie Band 2010” and more presented the band on a positive route. In November 2011 they signed a deal with Interscope Records and began working with English Grammy-winning producer Alex da Kid. Eventually, the Tolmans would split from the band and Daniel Platzman would be chosen in August of 2011 by invite from Ben McKee, leading the signing of band’s label deal in November 2011, beside keyboardist Theresa Flaminio.
Theresa Flaminio left Imagine Dragons in early 2012, leaving them as a four-member band. The band worked closely with Alex da Kid, whom they recorded their first major release within West Hollywood, California. An extended play named “Continued Silence” was published on Valentine’s Day digitally and got to number 40 on the Billboard Hot 200. The band also announced an EP titled Hear Me in the year 2012. Soon after, “It’s Time” was released as a single and made it to number 15 on the Billboard Hot 100. The album’s second single “Radioactive” reached No. 1 on the Billboard Rock Songs, Billboard Alternative Songs, and Swedish singles chart and has marketed more than seven million singles in the United States, destroying a record by spending 87 whole weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. “Radioactive” stayed at No. 1 on the Hot Rock Songs chart for a record-breaking 23 weeks and became the genre’s biggest hit of 2013. By the end of 2013, “Radioactive” had already marketed over 3,000,000 copies. Rolling Stone called it “the biggest rock hit of the year”. It was also the most streamed song of 2013 on Spotify in the United States. It was nominated for the Grammy Award for Record of the Year and the Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards, winning the second of the two. During 2015, it was confirmed diamond by the RIAA for more than 10 million copy sales in the United States.
The third single “Demons” hit Number one on the Billboard Pop Songs and Number six on the Billboard Hot 100 and has sold more than 5 million copies in the U.S. to date. The band published a live album, “Live at Independent Records”, in April of 2013. On September 27, 2016, Imagine Dragons started teasing their third studio album with a tweet on Twitter saying “studio”. The band proceeded to post secret messages on their Twitter account for the next few months. On January 28, 2017, the band began uploading a series of videos teasing the album’s first single. The time-lapse videos featured lead singer Dan Reynolds drawing surreal pictures on a drawing pad. Morse code was hidden in the videos and translated to “objects of the same color”. On February 1, 2017, Imagine Dragons released “Believer” as the lead single for their next album. “Believer” was used as an ad for the Nintendo Switch and part of the Super Bowl. On April 27, 2017, Imagine Dragons released “Thunder” as the second single from their third album. On May 8, 2017, Imagine Dragons declared their third album “Evolve” and a brand new song named “Whatever It Takes”. A tour for the album was also announced that very day. Evolve was released on June 23, 2017, worldwide. The album was in most countries top 5. Offstage, Reynolds is sweaty, but not completely content. “I pushed too hard on ‘Radioactive.” “Stupid.” Still, he says, toweling off, “I love a song that makes you feel like an explosion.” If he feels satisfied onstage, perhaps it’s because it’s the only area he can truly erupt.