Thirty Seconds to Mars is an American rock band that has been around since the late 1990s. Its core members are Jared Leto and Shannon Leto. However, there have been other band members at various points. So far, Thirty Seconds to Mars has released five studio albums. Some have been undisputed successes. In contrast, others have met more mixed receptions. Either way, Thirty Seconds to Mars remains vital by continuing to evolve.
Here is our opinion of the ten best Thirty Seconds to Mars songs ever released:
10. Love Is Madness
“Love Is Madness” comes from Thirty Seconds to Mars’s fifth studio album America. It features vocals from Halsey, who has collaborated with a wide range of artists. Subject-wise, “Love Is Madness” is darker than one might expect based on the name.
It isn’t about the emotion’s overwhelming power. Instead, it is about entering a relationship even though the viewpoint character realizes it won’t turn out well. Regardless, Leto and Halsey’s vocals blend surprisingly well.
9. City of Angels
Interested individuals should have no problem guessing that “City of Angels” is about Thirty Seconds to Mars’s experience with Los Angeles. It stands out because its viewpoint character seems more positive about it than not. After all, he considers it home, not least because he was successful in realizing his dream in Los Angeles.
8. A Beautiful Lie
“A Beautiful Life” was the title track on the band’s second studio album. However, it was the fourth single rather than the lead single, meaning it played less of a role in propelling the band into the mainstream than its predecessors. Still, “A Beautiful Lie” more than earned its position on this list by being one of the most representative songs of the release.
7. Closer to the Edge
Thirty Seconds to Mars is famous for experimenting with new sounds. Here, “Closer to the Edge” has a clear pop influence while remaining an excellent example of progressive rock. It stopped at the number 99 position on the Billboard Hot 100, but it fared better in several other countries. For instance, the song was a Top 20 hit in Australia, Austria, and Finland. Similarly, it barely missed that honor by peaking at the number 21 position in Belgium and New Zealand.
6. Up In the Air
“Up In the Air” is often remembered because it premiered from the International Space Station. Amusingly, the electronic-influenced song doesn’t have much to do with space. Instead, it is much more concerned with relationship dynamics. There is a sexual element. However, the themes of control running through the lyrics are even more evident. No wonder more than one listener has said the song gave them some food for thought.
5. Kings and Queens
This song came out on the band’s third studio album called This Is War. It is a progressive rock song that took considerable inspiration from the adult contemporary music of the 1980s. That is fitting because this is a triumphant song about what humans can achieve. Even so, it is far from being purely optimistic, as shown by what seems to be the suggestion that we are caught between our better and worse aspects.
“Attack” is every bit as energetic as one would expect. The funny thing is that Thirty Seconds to Mars wasn’t always convinced of its potential. As a result, they came very close to leaving it on the cutting room floor. Fortunately, the record producer Josh Abraham convinced the band that the song had potential, thus transforming the way they handled this particular piece of music.
Subsequently, “Attack” became the lead single for A Beautiful Lie, the studio album that made the band well-known. It isn’t quite the breakthrough song, but it is no exaggeration to say that it paved the way for its more popular successors.
3. From Yesterday
For instance, “From Yesterday” was the third single from A Beautiful Lie. It has the honor of being the band’s first single to make it to the top of the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks, which is now the Billboard Alternative Airplay. Its sound can feel a bit dated because it came out in the mid-2000s. Despite this, its impact cannot be denied.
2. This Is War
“This Is War” was the title track of the studio album of the same name. Like much of Thirty Seconds to Mars’s musical output, its lyrics are highly interpretable. For example, some people think it is exhorting listeners to put their trust in one another.
Simultaneously, others believe the lyrics are saying people will create a better world by looking beyond meaningless preoccupations. Whatever the case, “This Is War” is experimental while remaining enjoyable, which is a fine balance that not every artist can strike. Here, Thirty Seconds to Mars did so convincingly.
1. The Kill
Perhaps unsurprisingly, “The Kill” occupies the top of this list. For those unfamiliar, it was the second single from A Beautiful Lie. As such, “The Kill” was responsible for carrying forward the built-up momentum from “Attack,” which it did so well that it led right into “From Yesterday.”
This song never managed to make it to the top of the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks. Still, it beat its successor in one regard by staying on the chart for an astonishing 52 weeks. Something stands as a testament to its strong appeal in its time.
Interested individuals might want to check out this song by watching its music video. Thirty Second to Mars is famous for its offerings in this regard. The music video for “The Kill” is widely considered exceptional even in that context, so much so Kerrang! named it the single greatest rock music video made up to that point in 2009.
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