Reporting Shannon Carlin
“It was interesting to make an album without so much conflict in our lives,” Jared Leto told Radio.com. “Because the last album we battled our record company and there was this massive lawsuit.”
While recording 2009’s This Is War, Leto, his brother Shannon and guitarist Tomo Miličević, were sued for $30 million by their label, EMI, for failing to deliver the third of five albums. The band eventually made a documentary centered around the breach of contract lawsuit called Artifact, which Leto directed under the pseudonym Bartholomew Cubbins. The film has been making the festival rounds and recently played SXSW.
“This album was really fun,” said Leto. “We didn’t have that pressure. We didn’t have those distractions.”
Without all the hoopla surrounding their new record, out May 21, the band was able to actually enjoy themselves. But that’s not to say the album is totally happy-go-lucky.
“I think the album is really intense,” Leto said. “It’s really passionate, there’s a lot of energy… it’s a celebration.”
During the two-year recording process, the guys hit the studio in cities all over the world, including Paris, Berlin and a small mining town in Austria called Schladming. But Leto said they actually had the most fun recording at a studio located 45 minutes away from where they live in California.
“There was a period of time where we rented a house in Malibu,” he said. “We spent a little time out there working on [the song] ‘Conquistador,’ overlooking the ocean. It was really magical, unforgettable.”