Best songs: Supremacy, Panic Station, The 2nd Law: Isolated System Weakest songs: Save Me, Liquid State Verdict: While a very experimental album for Muse, quite a few attempts at experimentation don't go very well, and ultimately feel quite dull. I personally have found their albums from The Resistance up to Drones to be quite flawed in certain respects, trying to experiment, but being unable to produce consistently great material, leading to some extremely overblown ideas or just some failed experiments. Reapers is a massive improvement from anything else on the album, with a lot of incredible riffs, switching between a Van Halen inspired mini solo, and a simple, hard hitting riff, combined with some of the classic Muse dramatic flair, making for a uniquely amazing song on a mostly subpar album. From here, Pressure manages to further heighten the album, being one of my favourite tracks here, built around switching between 2 equally great riffs and a chorus that manages to be surprisingly fun, despite the cheesiness of the backing vocals. Unluckily, Dominic Howard's father died the same evening of a heart attack. Best songs: Dead Inside, Reapers, The Globalist Weakest songs: Psycho, Mercy, Defector, Revolt, Aftermath Verdict: I see no real reason to listen to more than the best songs on the album unless you're a fan of Muse, as basically any album before this makes for a much better starting point and listening experience.
After this point is where the flaws begin to show, as this is where one can really feel the strong 'Bends' and 'Pablo Honey 'era 'Radiohead' influence, which doesn't work well in many cases, as it leads to a lot of the tracks sounding quite bland, 'Filip' being a prime example of something that feels as if it could fit right in 'Pablo Honey', being downright cheesy in a way that really isn't fun at all, instead coming across as irritating. Nevertheless, in 1998, the trio signed to the Maverick Records. This time they employed Paul Reeve, John Corfield and Rich Costey to handle production. The performance is nothing short of impressive, with the instrumentation being able to set tone and emotion quite well, and Matt Bellamy already proving that he is a great vocalist, even if his singing can become a bit overbearingly angsty at times. Dig Down is another example of an out of place seeming single, being heavily in line with the dubstep sound of The 2nd Law, being quite empty sounding. This work gave a handfull of energetic hits - hard Supermassive Black Hole, surprisingly melodic Map Of Problematique, soft Starlight and historical Knights Of Cydonia.
The riffs are also something truly great here, although they can feel somewhat repetitive by the end, with a less passionate, but still great performance by Matt. I find the album quite easy to listen to in general and think that if you want something that's mostly simple, that still shows high musical aptitude, then this album is one I highly recommend. And this is really one of the main places in which the album falls apart for me, the extremely monotonous tone that each song brings, all being overly emotional without actually being impactful, which causes it to be something boring, rather than what adds extra depth to the album. Fortunately, the album gets back on track after this with a song that I like calling 'Fun With Microtones' At least I'm pretty sure that's part of this. As it stands, I'm just not a fan of many songs on the album, and the final 4 all being duds in my opinion makes the experience that much less enjoyable. As for the sound itself, I personally enjoy it thoroughly, finally using their electronics again in a way that sounds like more than an experiment, sounding like part of the identity of the album, which heavily leans on 80s aesthetic.
While it isn't the most incredibly ambitious album made by them, I find that what they've done is still sufficiently interesting, and marks the first muse album in ages which I'd love to listen to it again and again. The album starts off in an incredible way, showing all that Muse have become, with an intense, dissonant piano line as Matt Bellamy belts out his vocals, before layers of harmonisation come in. Mercy can be summed up in a simple phrase, Starlight but worse. The Showbiz disc had some autobiographic material and a comparatively soft sound. Rich Costey returned to co-produce the album.
I find the middle section of the album to contain some really great electronics and a very pleasant, building sound throughout, and climaxing well, leading to a few songs that show off some really great electro-pop, along with the occasional bit of rock. Muse is an alternative rock band from Teignmouth, England, United Kingdom. As for the three remaining songs here, Get Up and Fight, while the story of Matt's uncle definitely gives the song some deeper meaning, I still find it to be the weakest moment here, with the female backing vocals sounding generic, and for everything to be too predictable without sufficient enjoyability to justify it. Muse's music is characterised by Matt's vocals, which have a more than passing similarity to those of Thom Yorke - but in all fairness, also have a very unique slant, with a lot less drawl and a lot more passion. Even here, it's clear that there will be a much greater emphasis on synths and keyboards however, as the guitar takes a backseat when compared to the other instruments, even if it does come in much louder near the end. I do appreciate what Muse tried doing, and it works really well in many places, but there are also some which fall somewhat flat. Posted Friday, February 8, 2019 Review 2135051 After refining and smoothing out their general sound in Absolution, Muse loses the majority of its intensity, and instead focuses on many of the pop elements of the band, while also incorporating a few more elements which could be considered more in the vein of prog, with more unique instruments along with some different song structures.
The song titled Feeling Good became the lead single from the Origin Of Symmetry, which saw light in 2001. Muse are an English rock band from Teignmouth, Devon, formed in 1994. Muse came together at the age of 13, although the band was then known as Gothic Plague. Hoodoo continues this tone, but I feel like it didn't have quite enough time to develop into something more than simply enjoyable. People who is not demanding with this band will enjoy it, but I am not that kind of guy. The unfortunate thing is that after these track, the album significantly drops off, with the influences creeping in quite a lot. Furthermore, the songs have the perfect mix of accessibility with more complex, abrasive elements, leading to it having an extremely dramatic, yet still enjoyable, and very accessible album.
From the opening moments of 'New Born', it's already clear that this is a far more mature effort, with much tighter interplay between the instruments, along with a much smoother progression. Assassin starts off with an awesome intro before breaking into an intense rock track, but I still don't find many moments of the song to be quite as enjoyable as the intro. While this album admittedly isn't anything much when comparing it to some of their peak material, I do still find quite a bit of it enjoyable. That said, the overall darker, more grandiose tone of the album is something I'm definitely a big fan of, and if this album were trimmed down a bit and refined, this would probably be an album I enjoyed even more than Origin Of Symmetry. Out of This World: The Story of Muse. As for all the praise I have for when bands try experimenting with something new, there still needs to be a basic sense of cohesion, which this album definitely feels as if it's lacking at multiple points, despite the fact that quite a few of these songs are really well written, or at least are interesting.
Although not strictly Prog Rock, Muse have a progressive approach and a hypnotising aura about their work, even when it is aggressive, that lifts them out of the ordinary murk and into a truly interesting light that holds appeal for fans of heavy and progressive music alike. There's definitely some potential that can be seen here, but even so, I feel very happy that I started off listening to 'Absolution', rather than this, otherwise my experience with the band would likely have been very different. Posted Tuesday, February 12, 2019 Review 2135925 After hearing many horror stories about the quality of this album and all those following it, I put listening to this one on hold for quite some time, sticking to the 3 previous albums for whenever I wanted to listen to Muse. The final two songs are both ballads, 'Feeling Good' being a cover that definitely adds enough of 'Muse's' flair to it to make it their own. After Drones, which was a correct album according to Muse standards, Simulation Theory is very different. This is where Simulation Theory manages to differ itself significantly, keeping to a very particular sound for the majority of the album, without getting too ambitious in the process.
Furthermore, despite what I've said about the tasteful use of the electronic moments, I do find quite a few of them to be uninspired. City of Delusion has a strong exotic sound to it, with the strings giving it a Middle Eastern feel to it, before the song then breaks out into an awesome trumpet solo with a groovy bassline. Their common prodigy changed several titles untill they decided to stop on Muse. Stockholm Syndrome is the band being at some of their heaviest and most intense, with a killer riff, and a constant fast pace that works exceptionally with one of Matt Bellamy's most emotional performances. Each movement captures a different feeling so well, yet all work together perfectly as a whole, bringing the album to an extremely satisfying close.