Jared Leto, the artist with a sea of talent and imagination in his closet, takes the rein on “Love Lust Faith+ Dreams” from the word go, and how. The lyrics are poignant, doused in all things humane, reflecting much of Leto’s social efforts and persona. 30STM have ditched the Industrial influenced Alternative Rock/Metal sound prevalent in the debut and sophomore records and shifted permanent base to the comfort zone of piano/keyboard driven ballads, with minimalistic Guitars. There are plenty of hooks and memorable moments to grant the album more than a few handful of spins (assuming you are an open-minded listener, irrespective of whether you are an old fan or new). While all these grandiose elements are effective enough to help the record climb the charts steadily, the overall sound should feel a bit forced after a while. The amalgamation of all things good and pure, coloured and cultural that audio-evangelist Leto has tried to incorporate into his album are bound to give most fans a soothing experience, some are bound to miss the epicness of erstwhile hits such as the “The Kill”, “Beautiful Lie” and the likes. Maybe the global peace project should have behoved from compositions in the lines of “Buddha for Mary” and “(This is) The Story” too, something to chew away the ironical traces of monotony. Having said that, it would be a mistake to brand the album as a superficial shot at pricking new ears; “Love Lust Faith + Dreams” is a solid, stadium/arena Rock record that holds its own and should sit well with anyone who has been a fan their last record.
It is amusing how people expect so many unrealistic offerings from the musicians they love. As I recall a peer from the music circle mentioning the other day, most artists survive a phase and then they live as a shadow of their former selves; this is because the fans who would have carved the former’s logo on themselves only a few days ago, jeer at the same artists if they try on a new mould and brand them as sell-outs, or crucify the artist if they keep tinkering with the same old sounds, basically belabour the artist for what is a self-discovery every musician makes at one point of time.
Roughly put, 30STM has achieved what Linkin Park tried to do but failed on more occasions than not, what bands like Red have always did and succeeded only marginally- To grow out of the cocoon and be accepted for what it has set out to accomplish and HAS accomplished so far. The transition has not been achieved over night, nor is it selling out. They grew as musicians, period. Thirty Seconds to Mars does not, anymore, sound like a juvenile band with angsty reasons to produce captivating sounds; Thirty Seconds to Mars has outgrown itself, evolved, in a broader aspect of lyrical concepts, philosophy and of course, sound.
Pros: Experimental, unorthodox.
Cons: Too mellow at parts.