“This isn’t a Celine Dion concert. This is a 30 Second to Mars concert!” yelled frontman Jared Leto at last night’s show at Sound Academy in Toronto.
The band’s first Toronto show since 2011 began with the ominous-sounding horn intro of “Birth”, from their new album Love, Lust, Faith + Dreams, with all band members hooded until they burst into the energetic “Night of the Hunter” and “This Is War” which featured several large balloons that dropped on the crowd ala Arcade Fire at Coachella.
As Leto waved a white flag with the band’s logo on it during “Do Or Die”, they didn’t surrender, but instead turned up the energy with tracks like “City of Angels”, during which Leto revealed that he worked on the music video for the song before the show, which will take the shape of a short film, and the anthemic “Kings and Queens”.
As bandmates Shannon Leto and Tomo Miličević left the stage, Leto exhibited his vocal strength and solo playing ability as he performed three acoustic songs, including the powerful “The Kill”, “Alibi” and crowd favourite “Hurricane”, which took on a slower pace than the first half of their set, but it also provided an initimate feel to the show with the crowd often singing along.
Once their set winded to a close, Leto invited a seven-year-old boy to the stage, which allowed the crowd to collectively melt at his adorableness, which briefly took the attention away from Leto. Although it’s unclear whether Leto and company are aware of Toronto-based rockers Hollerado, they took a page out of their repertoire as they unleashed a huge blast of confetti as Sound Academy erupted with the song’s catchy closing refrain of “Closer to the edge/No no no no”.
Openers, Danish dance rockers New Politics, who you might have heard of from their song “Harlem”, which is on the NHL 14 soundtrack, jump started the show with a fast pace and lead singer David Boyd made the stage his personal dance floor with several break dancing moves, including an armless headstand, all of which culminated with Boyd jumping into the crowd and as he stood upon a sea of already sweaty fans, continued to sing.
“Don’t ever give up on your dreams”, said Boyd at one point during their set, which 30 Seconds To Mars’ performance also echoed; That was the mantra of the show. Regardless of your current life situation, New Politics and 30 Seconds To Mars both proved that with a little luck, love and faith, big things can happen.