30 Seconds to Mars

Biography: Created in 1998 by Jared Leto (vocals and guitar) and his brother, Shannon (drums), 30 Seconds to Mars merely began as a small family project. Things began to speed up quickly, however, and Matt Wachter later joined the band as bassist. After a small revolving door of guitarists (as the band's first two guitarists, Kevin Drake and Solon Bixler, left the band due to issues primarily related to touring), the three auditioned Tomo Milicevic to round out the band's roster. Milicevic also plays keyboards for the band.

Although Jared Leto is a Hollywood actor, he prefers not to use this information to promote the band; in fact, the band refuses to play at venues that use his fame to promote shows.

30 Seconds to Mars' first – self-titled – album, produced by Bob Ezrin, was released in 2002 to critical acclaim, but only achieved sales of just over 100,000. The band's second album, A Beautiful Lie, was released on August 30, 2005. For this effort, the band traveled (during the
course of three years) to four different continents, including five different countries, to perfect their sound and also to allow for Jared's film career. The album was produced by Josh Abraham, whose producing credits also include Orgy, Velvet Revolver, and Linkin Park.
Because A Beautiful Lie was leaked five months before its release, the band decided to include two bonus tracks: "Battle of One" (an original song that was also set to be the album's title track when it was first announced) and "Hunter" (a cover of the Björk song of the same name). To further promote the album, the band also enclosed "golden passes" in a select number of copies, which grant their owners access to any 30 Seconds to Mars concert free of charge, along with backstage access.

The band's phoenix logo (which the band named "Mythra") bears the phrase "Provehito in Altum", the band's motto. Roughly translated from Latin, this means "Launch forth into the deep". The logo was primarily used for promotion of the band's debut self-titled album, whereas for their second release, A Beautiful Lie, the new Trinity logo was created consisting of three skulls, along with the band's name and motto.

In addition to the tracks on their two full-length releases thus far, the band has also recorded a few other tracks. Among these tracks are "Phase 1: Fortification" and "Valhalla", the latter of which was present on an early demo. "Phase 1: Fortification" was released on an overseas single for "Capricorn (A Brand New Name)". Another track featured on certain imported 30 Seconds to Mars titles is "Anarchy in Tokyo", a song that was recorded during the process of their self-titled debut. "Revolution" was also recorded for the self-titled album, but wasn't included because it didn't fit the theme of the album, and because of fear that listeners would take the lyrics too literally, especially after the September 11, 2001 attacks.[citation needed] "Occam's Razor" was also recorded, but was never included on any of the band's releases. As a result, it is considered the most difficult to locate of the five unreleased tracks.

Demo versions of songs on the band's self-titled debut were also slightly different, along with different names. For example, "Fallen" was previously called "Jupiter", and "Year Zero" was previously called "Hero". Also made available are the demo verions of "Buddha For Mary" and "93 Million Miles"; the latter originally had lyrics referring to the band Deadsy, whose members Dr. Nner and P. Exeter Blue I provided extra instrumentation on several tracks, but the lyrics were changed after the two bands were involved in a small feud.

Echelon is a street team for the band 30 Seconds To Mars, which helps in bringing friends to the shows, convincing friends to buy band merchandise, phoning local radio stations to request the band's songs, putting up posters, posting to band forums or related bulletin boards online, and maintaining zines or websites dedicated to the band.

Welcome to the universe. Exploding with atmosphere, power and melody, their songs are at once apocalyptic and uplifting, filled with characters who battle with alienation, paranoia and dark obsessions, while envisioning their own escape from this world.

30 Seconds To Mars is a captivating, imaginative new band from Southern California. They co-produced their self-titled 'Immortal/Virgin' album, with the legendary Bob Ezrin and newcomer Brian Virtue (Jane's Addiction). They sought out Ezrin because they grew up listening to his groundbreaking work with Pink Floyd, KISS, and Alice Cooper, also they felt he was the only one who could help them capture the size, and scope of what they wanted to accomplish on their debut recording. The band's widescreen sound is adrenalized and nuanced, balancing huge guitars with anthemic vocal lines and organic synthesizers with electronic underpinnings.

Even before the album was released, the buzz was so strong Puddle of Mudd took the unusual step of inviting 30 Seconds To Mars to open a six-week tour for them in the spring of 2002, even though they were totally unknown, and no one had yet heard their music on the radio.

Drawing on influences ranging from masters like Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin and Rush to other important artists such as Brian Eno and The Cure, 30 Seconds To Mars transcends the chaos of the modern world by allowing listeners to imagine themselves away from it. The band's very name implies the accelerated society we live in, suggesting that an escape may be as close as a few seconds away. Mars hovering above us has always been an iconographic image, not to mention being the God of War. But this is not science fiction. 30 Seconds To Mars songs are real stories and real moments that examine personal human experience. Lyrically, the songs are filled with metaphors and moments of fantasy that capture the imagination.

In songs such as the dynamic Capricorn (a brand new name), with its reference to a mysterious disappearance, and the foreboding End Of The Beginning, with its soaring vocals and intense driving rhythm, 30 Seconds To Mars draws a startlingly unique mood rather than a picture. Relishing the challenge of the artist's duty, rather than simply representing the obvious, the band thrusts itself into the sonic atmosphere they've created, leaving their own indelible mark. In the provocative Oblivion, pulsating guitar and keyboards lead into the frantic warning, everybody run now, everybody run now. Powerful vocals, potent guitars and a dramatic narration drive Buddha For Mary, the story of a different girl, who always liked to fly and had a thing for astronauts. Living life on Mars, she is urged to leave the politics to madmen.

30 Seconds To Mars retreated to the isolation of Wyoming's big sky country to record the album. The band and Ezrin chose an empty warehouse lot on 15,000 acres, striving for the precise location that would enhance their sound. An intense period of preproduction began, starting with an almost obsessive examination of close to 50 songs. After an initial period of chaos, a fruitful relationship bloomed between the musicians and producer, leading to an artistically rewarding work atmosphere. The expansive frontier helped feed their imagination and their playing. Although the songs had already been written, nothing was left untouched as they massaged them frame-by-frame into distinguished guitar riffs and tones and sculpted every last note and detail to achieve their goal.

While the subjects of their songs are engaged in their own searches, 30 Seconds To Mars is involved in a search of their own to produce something unique in today's world of disposable music--something with depth and substance, a work that is built to last.
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30 Seconds to Mars' Scores

Average career score: 55
Highest Metascore: 62 Love Lust Faith + Dreams
Lowest Metascore: 49 30 Seconds to Mars
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 3
  2. Negative: 0 out of 3
3 music reviews
Title: Year: Credit: User score:
49 30 Seconds to Mars Aug 27, 2002 Primary Artist 8.6
54 This Is War Dec 8, 2009 Primary Artist 7.4
62 Love Lust Faith + Dreams May 21, 2013 Primary Artist 6.3