Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams

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Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams
Studio album by Thirty Seconds to Mars
Released May 17, 2013
Recorded April – December 2012 at
The International Centre for the Advancement of the Arts and Sciences of Sound
(Los Angeles, California)
Genre
Length 44:50
Label
Producer
Thirty Seconds to Mars chronology
MTV Unplugged
(2011)
Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams
(2013)
Singles from Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams
  1. "Up in the Air"
    Released: March 19, 2013
  2. "Do or Die"
    Released: July 1, 2013
  3. "City of Angels"
    Released: November 11, 2013

Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams (stylized as LOVE LUST FAITH + DREAMS) is the fourth studio album by the American rock band Thirty Seconds to Mars. The concept album was released through Virgin Records on May 17, 2013. Upon release, it peaked at number 6 on the Billboard 200.[1]

Background[edit]

In 2009, 30 Seconds to Mars released their third studio album This Is War. The album saw a new direction taken by the band, employing darker lyrical themes, a louder sound and "much more electronic and experimental, with lots of vintage synths."[2][3] This Is War has since sold over four million albums and one million singles solicited from the album worldwide, making the album the band's most commercially successful so far.[4] The tour that followed, the Into the Wild Tour, Hurricane Tour and Closer to the Edge Tour, spanned two years and broke the Guinness World Record for the "Longest Concert Tour by a Rock Band", playing a total of 309 shows.[5]

To follow up This Is War, the band began to work on their fourth studio album immediately after the conclusion of the Closer to the Edge Tour. Frontman Jared Leto wanted "an album that has ebb and flow and content and structure.", a sharp contrast to the band's previous work.[6] Leto began writing for the album in December 2011, and by the time the band started the recording sessions for Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams in April 2012, he had amassed a total of 50 songs.[7]

On April 23, 2012, Rolling Stone released an article revealing that 30 Seconds to Mars was currently in the studio recording a fourth LP. According to the article, the band previewed some of the new material in their April 27 VyRT stream, including a song called "Witness". It also stated that they were interested in working with other artists for the album. The band's official Twitter account confirmed this news. On April 25, 2012 MTV Buzzworthy confirmed that they are working with famed record producer Steve Lillywhite (U2, Peter Gabriel, The Killers)[8]

Recording[edit]

The recording sessions for Love, Lust, Faith + Dreams took place from April to December 2012, at the Laboratory in Los Angeles, U.S.A.[9]

In September 2012, "The Summit", an event where fans are invited to contribute chorus vocals to tracks on the album and previously held to record choral vocals for This Is War in 2009, was held. Unlike This Is War, where an entire audience-sized crowd took part in the recording, the summit that took place for the recording of Love, Lust Faith and Dreams was more stripped-down and organic, with only 20 to 25 people contributing vocals to the record.[10]

Concept[edit]

All four of the introductions, as heard in Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams.

Problems playing this file? See media help.

Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams is a concept album revolving around the themes after which the album is named. The album is divided into four segments, each named Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams, respectively, with the beginning of each segment declared by a female voice proclaiming the name of the segment before the beginning of a song or at the end of an interlude which introduces the next segment of the album.[11]

A more specific album concept can be seen inside the CD. It is recognized by four colors, with the color red standing for Love, yellow for Lust, green for Faith, and blue for Dreams. LOVE contains "Birth" and "Conquistador". LUST contains "Up in the Air", "City of Angels", "The Race", "End of All Days" and "Pyres of Varanasi". FAITH contains "Bright Lights", "Do or Die" and "Convergence". DREAMS contains "Northern Lights", and "Depuis Le Début".

Packaging[edit]

The artwork for Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams features Damien Hirst's 2011 gloss-on-canvas work, entitled "Isonicotinic Acid Ethyl Ester".[12] The painting is part of Hirst's spot painting series. It has also been announced that a second piece of artwork from Hirst, a signwriting-on-canvas piece entitled "Monochromatic Sectors from Primary, Secondary & Tertiary Colour Ring, Dark Centre" will appear inside the booklet of the Compact Disc version of the album. This art is actually featured on the CD itself.[13]

Promotion[edit]

A CD copy of "Up in the Air" was sent to the International Space Station aboard SpaceX CRS-2.

Early promotion for the album during its latter recording stages were two programs on the online premium Streaming media website VyRT, a service which was founded by the band themselves in the latter stages of the This Is War album cycle. The two programs, The Mars Laboratory and The Mars Laboratory II showed members of VyRT an insight into the band's activity during the recording of the album and also debuted acoustic versions of brand new songs from Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams. The Mars Laboratory aired on April 27, 2012[14] while The Mars Laboratory II aired during post-production of the album on December 1, 2012.[15]

On May 2, 2013, the band's Twitter hashtag, "#MARSmay21st", successfully reached the worldwide trending hashtags on the social platform. As a way of saying thanks to their fans, the band released the lyric video for "Conquistador" on Vevo the same day, two weeks before the album's release.[16]

Singles[edit]

"Up in the Air" was released as the lead single from Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams on March 19, 2013. It was announced it would be the first single from the new album on February 28 via Twitter. A CD copy of the single was sent to NASA and SpaceX for launch aboard the Dragon spacecraft on SpaceX CRS-2.[17] The mission was launched atop a Falcon 9 rocket on March 1, 2013, sending the first ever commercial copy of music into space. The spacecraft berthed and docked with the International Space Station on March 3, 2013, making the single available to play by the Expedition 35 crew aboard the station. The song made its worldwide debut aboard the station on March 18, 2013 and was released as a Digital download single on iTunes the next day.[7] The music video was released on April 19, 2013 worldwide on Vevo.[18]

"City of Angels" was sent to US Modern rock radio as a promotional single from Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams on July 23, 2013.[19] A music video for "City of Angels", featuring Bartholomew Cubbins as director, was released onto YouTube on October 29, 2013. It was shot over two days on August 18 and 19, 2013, in Los Angeles, California.

Despite not being released as an official single, "Conquistador" was used in a trailer promoting the upcoming video game WWE 2K14.[20]

"Do or Die" was released as a promotional single from Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams on September 9, 2013 in Europe.[21] During the Summer European Tour, Jared confirmed the band was recording footage for a live video for the song. The music video was released on August 5, 2013 worldwide on Vevo.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3.5/5 stars[22]
Alternative Press 3/5 stars[23]
Billboard 8.2/10[24]
Entertainment Weekly A–[25]
Kerrang! 4/5 stars[26]
PopMatters 6/10[27]
Q 2/5 stars[28]
Rock Sound 8/10[29]
Sound & Vision 4/5 stars[30]
Uncut 2/5 stars[31]

Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams received generally positive reviews from music critics. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album received an average score of 62, based on 11 reviews.[32] Emily Zemler from Billboard praised the stylistic variety and experimentation, writing that the album "invests itself fully and artfully in its own vision," and "offers an opportunity to explore the boundaries of rock."[24] AllMusic senior editor Stephen Thomas Erlewine acknowledged the band's musical adventurousness, describing the record as "galvanized for the present, pushing its thick processed guitars, chanted choruses, and clanging keyboards to the forefront, flirting with taboos underneath its shining surface." He felt that the group's "loosening of their stylistic confines" results in their "boldest, brightest, most imaginative record."[22] In his review for Sound & Vision, Ken Richardson noticed the band's ambition and commended the album's concept.[30] Andy Ritchie of Rock Sound complimented Jared Leto's vocal performance and the group's musicianship, praising the "massive choruses" and "titanic climaxes," and stated that the album reaffirms that Thirty Seconds to Mars is in a class of its own.[29] In a four-and-a-half star review, Ryan Jones of Alternative Addiction commended the album's lyrical content and musical style, calling the new sounds "deep and plush," and wrote that the "entire record feels like an amazing journey."[33]

Ian Winwood, writing for Kerrang!, found the album "lavish but not cloying, expansive yet often economical, approachable without being familiar," calling it a "release that defies genre" and deeming it as a "grand achievement befitting this most grandiose of bands."[26] Kyle Anderson of Entertainment Weekly felt that although the album's narrative is inexplicable, "throbbing modern-rock anthems 'Up in the Air' and 'Bright Lights' offer visceral, hands-up hedonism."[25] Dan Slessor of Alternative Press commended the band's capacity for writing "titanic choruses full of sweeping drama in a manner that is almost untouchable," but felt that with "shorter songs and more restrained production" the album lacks the "epic quality" of its predecessor This Is War.[23] Brent Faulkner of PopMatters gave a mixed response, stating that the album has "its finer moments as well as moments that are overwrought, overextended, and overproduced."[27] Q magazine found it "empty in the extreme,"[28] while Uncut called it "wildly overcooked and deeply derivative."[31] John Watt from Drowned in Sound wrote that the album "is a disappointingly tepid affair."[34] Andy Baber of musicOMH felt that the record descends into "something of a mess" despite "starting with what sounded like a clear direction."[35]

Chart performance[edit]

Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams debuted at number 6 on the Billboard 200 and sold 52,000 copies in its first week of release. The album had charted in the top 10 across several countries, the band's highest charting position to date.[36]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Jared Leto, except where noted. 

No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Birth"     2:07
2. "Conquistador"     3:12
3. "Up in the Air"     4:35
4. "City of Angels"     5:02
5. "The Race"     3:40
6. "End of All Days"     4:46
7. "Pyres of Varanasi"     3:12
8. "Bright Lights"     4:51
9. "Do or Die"     4:07
10. "Convergence"   Shannon Leto 2:00
11. "Northern Lights"     4:44
12. "Depuis le Début"     2:33

Personnel[edit]

30 Seconds to Mars

Charts, certifications and accolades[edit]

Release history[edit]

Region Date Format Label
Australia[77] May 17, 2013 Digital download, CD EMI/Virgin Records, Universal Music
Germany[78]
Ireland[79]
Italy[80]
New Zealand[81]
United Kingdom[82] May 20, 2013
France[83]
Canada[84] May 21, 2013
Mexico[85]
United States[86]
Argentina[86]
Japan[87] May 22, 2013 Universal International, EMI Japan[88]
Philippines May 27, 2013 MCA Music

References[edit]

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