The last time 30 Seconds to Mars toured, the band broke the Guinness World Record for Longest Concert Tour by a Rock Band, playing 311 shows for their third studio multi-platinum album This Is War, released in 2009.
Four years later, the 15-year-old rock band, comprised of brothers Jared and Shannon Leto and Tomo Milicevic, released their fourth studio album, Love, Lust, Faith and Dreams, in May of this year.
“For us it’s a new beginning; we really feel like we’ve come into our true sound with this record,” lead guitarist Milicevic said in an interview.
Since the release of their album, the band has gained critical acclaim and sent a copy of this new record into space. They launched their single “Up In The Air” aboard the Falcon 9 rocket on March 1. The world tour supporting the newest album will span ten months with 92 shows — 23 of which will take place in North America.
On September 14, they played the biggest music festival in the world — Rock In Rio. Four days later, the trio headed to London for the iTunes Festival. The band’s performance at the iTunes Festival last month, which is available to view on iTunes gives fans a great preview of what to expect this weekend, including acrobatics on seesaws, giant balloons and intense lighting.
Milicevic says that performance in London was a fun and memorable and experience because of the variety of other performances he was able to see for himself and the artists he got to share the stage with.
“The festival is a shared experience with all of the bands and audiences there. It’s kind of a mish-mash of people,” Milicevic said. “It’s fun in the sense that you get to see people that you might not necessarily get the opportunity to to see and and play for.”
Less than a week later, they were on stage in Las Vegas for the iHeartRadio Music Festival. They made one last quick stop at the VMAs in Brooklyn, receiving their third award for their newest music video, and then jetted off to begin the North American leg of their world tour.
To say this band has been busy is an understatement.
The Los Angeles-based band returns to the City of Angels for the culmination of this second leg on October 12 at the Hollywood Bowl, a show Milicevic says the band is really looking forward to.
“L.A. is our home, no question,” Milicevic said. “Although we travel most of the year in other parts of the world, we’re always really excited to come home.”
Though Thirty Seconds to Mars has been actively touring since 2006, this will be their first time playing at the iconic amphitheater; thus they have dubbed it a “homecoming” concert.
“We really wanted to make that the destination of the journey — the final point,” Milicevic explained. “We can’t believe we have the opportunity to play there; it’s crazy, actually. It’s a dream come true for all of us and we’re really excited.”
While the band’s new album is something they’ve worked extremely hard on, Milicevic notes the responses that they have received from their audience have been surprising, but in the best way. And this only encourages them to keep the momentum going in their performances.
“[We’ve] actually been playing a lot of new songs and people have been really enjoying it,” Milicevic said. “[We’re] lucky that people are wanting to hear the new stuff. Often it takes more time for people to get used to the album.”
When making music, Milicevic expressed that his passion for the creative process is what drives the music the band produces, despite what others may think.
“You’re not really too concerned what anybody’s going to think about it, let alone the fans of the previous music or the potential ones. You have to be true to your creativity and open to whatever’s happening.”
Though many bands receive criticism for either changing their music too much or not enough, Milicevic declares that pleasing audiences is not the motivation behind their music. He focuses instead on being true to their art and who they are as a band.
“You change with time so your music is going to change. When you’re in the process of creating the music, you’re doing it for yourself at that point,” Milicevic said. “It’s afterward, when you release the music, that you let it find its audience and you lose some, you gain some, but you can’t ever use that as the motivating factor to create something. I think you’d fail every time that way no matter what.”
30 Seconds to Mars performs at the Hollywood Bowl on Saturday, Oct. 12th at 7:30 p.m. With several surprises in store for the audience, Milicevic promises it’s a show worthing coming to.
“We’ll be playing practically every song from the new record. We’re going above and beyond for the Hollywood Bowl; it’s going to be a really special show. I wouldn’t miss it for sure.”
Shelby White contributed to this report.
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