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Album Review

Emotional bloodletting never quite fit 30 Seconds to Mars. Perhaps it was residual prejudice from Jared Leto's status as actor-turned-musician, but they always seemed to skim the surface, even when they pushed roiling emotions to the forefront in the best traditions of grunge and screamo. When they were mining a post-grunge or nu-metal or emo vein, this was a liability, but now that they’ve shifted their music with the shifting times, adopting a hybrid of the Killers' retro new wave and My Chemical Romance's gothic prog, they’ve wound up with a sound that suits their stance. Which isn’t to say that they’ve gotten any less ridiculous; if anything, they’re more absurd, piling up Auto-Tuned vocals, gurgling synthesized loops, Kanye cameos, and a children's choir on almost every other song. Producers Steve Lillywhite and Flood, both veterans of U2, do give This Is War an appropriately epic scale, although "appropriate" seems an inappropriate word for such an ungainly mix of synth rock, metal, and prog, the distillation of all manner of brooding ‘80s teenage obsessions. What saves it from being nothing but thirtysomething wish fulfillment is that this move toward goth-glam requires 30 Seconds to emphasize hooks and gives them aural variety, which doesn’t make them seem any more serious, but does make them considerably more palatable. [The 2010 reissue of the albums adds three bonus tracks, including their collaboration with Kanye West as well as covers of Kanye's "Stronger" and Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance," done for a BBC session. The set also comes with a DVD made up of videos, short films, and a documentary.]

Customer Reviews


My favorite album by my favorite band.
They are amazing and I love everything about them.
This album means alot to thr band since they made it in their basement in LA, because they were being sued by their record label at the time. Anyway, thanks for fighting so hard.

I love you. Keep doing what you do <3

Best Album Ever

From beginning to end, this is the most complete Mars album. Each song feels as though every effort was made to get every last ounce of soul out of the performers. With the help of Flood, these boys have made an album for the ages. I would put this record up against the best. Buy it. Crank it up. Enjoy.

Okay Good Great

So good. Almost sounds like a soundtrack!


Genre: Alternative

Formed in 1998 by frontman Jared Leto and his older brother, 30 Seconds to Mars found success in the 2000s with a mix of post-grunge, screamo, and hard rock. The band gained a modest audience with its debut album, but it was the platinum-selling sophomore effort A Beautiful Lie that officially opened the floodgates in 2005, securing the band a frequent presence on MTV while paving the way for a number of successful tours. By placing all-access passes into 12 copies of the album, the bandmates also...
Full bio
This Is War, Thirty Seconds to Mars
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Adult Alternative, Music, Rock, Alternative
  • Released: Dec 08, 2009

Customer Ratings