Imagine Dragons Talk Second Album, ‘Radioactive’ Success at Billboard Music Awards Rehearsals: Watch

 Imagine Dragons
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 Imagine Dragons rehearse onstage during the 2014 Billboard Music Awards at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on May 16 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Imagine Dragons took a few minutes during their 2014 Billboard Music Awards rehearsal to talk about the band’s steady growth, the monster success of single “Radioactive” and the progress of their second full-length album.

“We took a house here in Vegas, cleared it, renovated it and turned it into a studio,” Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds tells Billboard. “It was like a dream for us, because some of these guys are big-time gear heads. We’re recording the album in that studio here in Las Vegas.”

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Reynolds says many of the new songs were written over the past two-and-a-half years while while Imagine Dragons were touring behind its debut album, “Night Visions.”

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“There are a lot of road songs and all the emotions that come with that,” he says. “I think it will be a special record because it really encapsulated the whole process of going from being a small nothing band to actually playing arenas. There are a lot of interesting things that go on between that. We’re excited with how it’s turning out.”

Imagine Dragons, who along with Lorde lead the pack of artists who are finalists in the most 2014 Billboard Music Awards categories, are in contention for a whopping 12 BBMAs, including top artist, top duo/group, top rock artist and top rock album. The quartet burned up the charts in 2013 with its album "Night Visions" and its many hit singles, including "Radioactive," which broke the record for the most weeks ever on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

“I don’t think any of us expected it to have any life like that,” Reynolds says of the song. “It just kept going. Playing live, honestly, we didn’t burn out on it because … we don’t really listen to our music unless we’re on a stage playing it. If you do that, it keeps it fresh for you. Maybe in 20 years I’ll be telling you we’re very tired of playing that song, but right now … we have good memories associated with it.”

Reynolds also discussed writing the new song “Battle Cry” for the upcoming film “Transformers: Age of Extinction,” due in theaters June 27.

“They reached out and asked if we wanted to do something with (composers) Hans Zimmer and Steve Jablonsky, who are two of our all-time favorites — they’re legends,” he says. “It’s incredible to work with them. We all grew up watching the ‘Transformers’ cartoon, it was part of our youth, we’re children of the ‘80s.”

Watch the 2014 Billboard Music Awards May 18 at 8/7c on ABC live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas as host Ludacris welcomes the biggest names in music to the stage.