You get the feeling, on mid-album track ‘End of All Days,’ that Jared Leto could do anything he wants musically. That’s he shouldn’t necessarily be hampered down by this electro shlog-rock sound he and his cohorts have created for themselves yet again on the band’s fourth album, LOVE, LUST, FAITH + DREAMS. That the drama is all a bit forced. On ‘Days,’ Leto reaches for Gahan and it’s like watching him in one of those epic videos jumping from one cliff to another but…missing. The camera immediately shoots to Leto’s eye’s and a furrowed brow as, naturally, he’s realized mid-air that he’s blown his proverbial load. What remains are flailing arms and that doggone sense of helplessness as he plummets to the ground.
I commend Leto’s cinematic sense that he brings to his music. Gerard Way was similar in his attempts to take My Chemical Romance into further over-the-top territory that basically resulted in an anxiety-ridden breakdown that emotionally bankrupted that band earlier this year. Leto may be much more confident but putting it all on red every time means your luck is going to run out eventually. There isn’t anything on this record that sounds original or that takes the band’s sound in any new directions. It’s more of the same. Whereas A Beautiful Lie was a thought-out emotional heart-string pulling vocal performance matched by a bona-fide rock soundtrack and This is War at the very least was a call to action to their rabid fan base, LOVE…is simply autopilot music. Which, if you were simply looking for another twelve tracks that are Jared Leto singing over some synth-rock on steroids with an overt pop music sheen to it, you’re in luck.