Thirty Seconds To Mars
30 Seconds To Mars


4.0
excellent

Review

by pizzamachine USER (219 Reviews)
October 30th, 2009 | 23 replies


Release Date: 2002 | Tracklist

Review Summary: “Jared Leto is not lost in space - he lives in it.”

Back in the day, Jared Leto (the singer, guitarist, and famed actor) teamed up with his drumming brother, Shannon Leto, and recorded 30 Seconds To Mars’ self-titled, debut album. They recorded the music, took the pictures, thought up logos, slogans and symbols, and released the album (selling over 100,000 copies). 30 Seconds To Mars didn’t get the attention they wanted at the start, and instead made mainstream success with their second album, A Beautiful Lie. 30 Seconds To Mars’ actual debut album never got off the ground, but those who knew about it soon watched the strange, actor-fronted band, transform into a disappointing mainstream success.

30 Seconds To Mars is one of the few successes in space rock history. Although the band could be forced under the genre of space rock in their second release, their debut album is too heavy to simply be rock. The perfect genre would be space metal but such a genre does not exist, nay, has never existed. With no specific genre to go by, it is difficult to pinpoint the band. 30 Seconds To Mars is inspired by such famous and peculiar bands as: Bjork, Tool, U2, and Pink Floyd. Out of these bands, Tool stands out as an obvious influence (Maynard from Tool even provided backing vocals on ‘Fallen’). Unconventional lyrics and metaphors, surprising changes from lighter rock to heavier music, dramatic buildups, sudden pauses, a moody atmosphere, and general experimentation can be found in 30 Seconds To Mars’ debut album.

With 30 Seconds To Mars’ motto, “Provehito in Altum”, (Latin for “launch forth into the deep”) there’s no doubt that the band swims in metaphors. One look at ‘93 Million Miles’ has enough metaphors to keep anyone, that does not have a degree in philosophy, puzzled for ages:

“Where does your garden grow. Tell me the secrets that you know; another time, another place. Where are the holy ones selling the secret to the sun. Welcome to the universe”.

Strange lyrics are often found in their songs, and the band’s influences are most likely to blame. Every moment is more thought-provoking than the next, resulting in a needlessly dramatic album. To top it all off, a hidden message lies within their every album: “Find the Argus Apocraphex”. The person that reads the message must then decide if the Argus Apocraphex is an object, a motto, or complete and utter poetic nonsense. ‘End of the Beginning’ complicates the question even further since the lyrics could simply be metaphorical, or could be implicate directions for solving the mystery:

“You saw what you get if you take what you take, look in the eye of the test it’s all because. Now there’s a feeling I get when I look to the left, but it should never be said. Start searching for a sign".

If it isn’t completely obvious from the start of the album, 30 Seconds To Mars has a thing for space music. ‘Capricorn’ starts off the album with the sound of a slowly rising synthesizer, similar to an alien space craft launching forth into deep space. The creepy synth then adds texture to the guitar-ridden atmosphere like a humming engine. This instrumental intro progresses until it fuses with Jared Leto’s vocals in the chorus. Bjork shows a notable influence in Jared’s crooning and creepy alien voice. Often, Jared uses half of his voice during verses only to unleash the rest of it in the choruses. In ‘Capricorn’, the same vocal patterns are evident, and the band as a result changes their technique to match the patterns. With a mix of layered synthesizers, Tool-ish guitar notes, relatively simple crunching guitar chords, separate acoustic guitars, and booming drums, the band keeps up with Jared's style nicely. The drums, however, steal the show (especially during songs such as ‘Fallen’ and ‘Echelon’) with its jungle beats that contribute to the overall hallucinogenic experience.

More like a sci-fi oriented, Tool-influenced, alternative metal band (but only in their debut album), 30 Seconds To Mars’ sound purposefully wanders through space and time. No matter what song is played, however, the sound is consistently atmospheric and spacey. Counting the number of times he says “welcome to the universe” in the album further fuses the message that 30 Seconds To Mars belongs in the cosmos. As ‘Year Zero’ boldly claims over and over again that they’ll never fade away, one can’t help but wonder if the band truly believes that they will live forever. Regardless of the final answer, one thing is clear: Jared Leto is not lost in space - he lives in it.

Recommended Songs:
- Capricorn (A Brand New Name)
- The Mission
- End of the Beginning



Recent reviews by this author
Breaking Benjamin EmberAnimals As Leaders The Madness of Many
Sevendust All I See Is WarDraconian A Rose For The Apocalypse
Draconian Turning Season WithinPower Quest Face The Raven
user ratings (942)
Chart.
3.3
great
other reviews of this album
1 of
  • DaveyBoy STAFF (2.5)
    Passable over-produced & overlong album has a couple of impressive tracks, but is too repe...

    Aeri (4)
    Mary was a different girl; had a thing for astronauts....

    ninjuice (3.5)
    A overlooked little gem significantly better than the follow-up....

    VigorousDuck13 (3)
    It's not often a band has a perfect debut. While "30 seconds to mars" has its short coming...

  • Nick Mongiardo (4.5)
    It took a moment before I lost myself in here......

    DropTune (4)
    Daring, original, and ambitious, "30 Seconds to Mars" is the most important album from the...



Comments:Add a Comment 
Titan50
October 30th 2009


4588 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Great review. Album is underrated

pizzamachine
October 30th 2009


13866 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks man, this album needs more love.

pizzamachine
October 30th 2009


13866 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Different strokes for different folks haha. Glad you like the review though; it's especially cool that you like my recs!

cirq
October 30th 2009


9349 Comments


I love the new track that's on the radio

BigHans
October 30th 2009


29378 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Oblivion and Echelon are great songs. Space metal is actually a great term for this band.

ninjuice
October 30th 2009


6760 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It's not metal though.

Metalstyles
Emeritus
October 30th 2009


8573 Comments


great review pizzabro. I thought their other one was only ok/passable so I didn't really bother with this. And although your review is very well-written then I think I'll still pass as for some reason, this album doesn't really draw me to listen.

AlexTM510
October 30th 2009


1455 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

awesome review



this record is a tad bit underrated

AtavanHalen
October 30th 2009


17920 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I really like this album.

Captain North
October 30th 2009


6793 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Album is hard rock. There, defined. But yeah, definitely underrated album and much better than their second.

BrahTheSunGod
October 31st 2009


1279 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Idk what this album is other than really good. Hopefully the new album goes back to sounding cosmic and epic like this one.



Good review, pos'd.

Captain North
October 31st 2009


6793 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

How isn't this hard rock? Heavy riffs and instrumentation, but obviously nothing vaguely metal about it. Yeah, it's a bit spacey but that doesn't make it not hard rock.

Captain North
October 31st 2009


6793 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Their not far off in this album. No less heavy than Alter Bridge and Chevelle really. Their next album is more alt rock. But songs like Edge of the Earth, Fallen, 93 Millions Miles...are easily hard rock. B-sides like Valhalla also prove this. Besides, Tool is more alt metal. And Chevelle and Godsmack cross over to that as well sometimes.

Captain North
October 31st 2009


6793 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Alter Bridge isn't even that heavy. O.o I'm talking about their debut, I haven't heard AB's newer stuff. And Tool is prog rock. This album is more like Chevelle than APC.

AtavanHalen
October 31st 2009


17920 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Agreeing with Tom on this.

DiceMan
October 31st 2009


7067 Comments


There are some really great tracks on this but there are suckish songs to stop the album as a whole from being good. I'll probably get a couple songs from their new one but not the whole album.

pizzamachine
October 31st 2009


13866 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Which ones are suckish?

BrahTheSunGod
October 31st 2009


1279 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Year Zero is kinda bland, as is The Mission. Honestly tho, those two are the only two keeping this CD from being a 5 for me.



Seriously, don't bother trying to mold this to a genre. It's unique. If you guys know of any other bands that sound similar to this, let me know

SlowlyFallingAwake
July 6th 2010


78 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Buddha for Mary is pretty amazing too.

EyesHalfClosed
August 31st 2011


57 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review, good album.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy