A Relentlessly Addictive Emotional Rollercoaster
Looking like an army poised to attack, the backdrop adorning the stage suggests that 30 Seconds To Mars are preparing for battle, one that they come close to losing before they even step on stage as patience amongst the sold out Brixton crowd wears thin over the late arrival of Jared Leto and co.
Apparently patience is a virtue though and as the grandeur of 'O Fortuna' resounds around room it's obvious that epic status is being strived for. Greeted with a wall of insatiable screams, the hypnotically enthralling 'A Beautiful Lie' opens proceedings as Leto dressed entirely in black with exception to a white blazer races around the stage, unapologetically brandishing every rock star cliché in the book from playing the guitar spinning around to holding the mic aloft in anticipation of a sing along, its as if he is playing a role, one he appears born to do making you forget entirely that his day job is in front of the silver screen. With songs that are as uniting as they are vast and captivating, 30STM are much more than an actor's side project with the likes of 'From Yesterday' erupting in a mass sing along before being eased gracefully aside for 'Saviour', making for an all consuming and relentlessly addictive emotional rollercoaster.
Theatrics though can't elude this band with rock embracing ballet as two white cladded ballerinas smeared in black make-up pirouette vigorously during 'Battle Of One' resulting in an unique yet intriguing partnership. As if not to be outdone 'The Kill' sees its anthemic status shared with a stringed accompaniment that is almost drowned out as lungs are pushed to breaking point in the futile attempt to equal the charismatic front man before he lunges into the crowd, clambering atop shoulders and still managing to be note perfect as the scream of "This is who I really am" electrifies all, commanding undivided attention.
Seemingly rendering a set list useless, Leto resorts to asking for requests, obliging with older hits 'Buddha For Mary' and a rare appearance of 'Echelon' in all its glory. After consulting his lawyer (guitarist Tommo) it's Leto who decides on tonight's final song, 'The Fantasy', welcomed with a gasp of anticipation that explodes in a frenzy of enthusiasm and ecstasy, eclipsed only by the cheeky inclusion of an opera singer in an attempt to beat the crowd's singing. It fails as the euphoria of 30STM's threatens to engulf all who stand in its way. Side project indeed.