30 Seconds To Mars: ‘We Killed Ourselves To Make This Album’

'It was a time to redefine, rediscover, reinvent, reinvest in each other,' Jared Leto says of This Is War.

By their own admission, 30 Seconds to Mars went to hell and back to make their new album, This Is War, so you can’t blame them for being a little hesitant to talk about the process. Sometimes, words aren’t enough.

“I don’t know what to say. We spent two years of our lives working on that record, and it was us against the world. We didn’t have outside influence or help, we didn’t have a label, we had us, betting the farm, and pushing ourselves,” frontman Jared Leto sighed. “There were times that it was overwhelming. Everything that was going on was brutal, but there were beautiful moments as well. There was so many outside influences that were in conflict that working on the record was actually quite peaceful. It was a case of survival, to tell the truth.”

The two-year battle that surrounded War has been as well-documented as the album itself, and now, with the December 8 release date quickly approaching, 30 Seconds to Mars are ready to put the past behind them and start talking about the future.

“It’s terrifying that the album is so close. There’s so much going on in my head,” Leto laughed. “One thing that I know is that this record is really the best that we can do. It’s everything that we have inside of us. It’s our complete commitment, it’s our complete abandonment, our blood and our bones and our heart and our soul, and everything. Everything we have is in this record, so that’s what we have to say. … Regardless of what anyone thinks of the record, we made the record we set out to make. … Who knows if anyone in the world will like it or not? That’s to be determined.”

And while there’s plenty of time to talk about the somber, icy songs on War, the important thing to mention right now is that the record is done, there’s a video due to premiere and 30 Seconds to Mars made it out alive. It’s time to celebrate, really.

“We were literally having to kill ourselves at times. I had it written on the wall: ‘Kill yourself to finish.’ There were no other options,” Leto said. “So we did that. It was a time to redefine, rediscover, reinvent, reinvest in each other. We thought about this record in a very deep way, and it means a lot to us. … Music can just be fun, but it can also do more, mean more, and that’s just what it is for us, I suppose.”