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Muse - Absolution CD (album) cover




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3.85 | 476 ratings

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keiser willhelm
4 stars I first heard Muse from back in my DT fanboy days. while browsing some DT news on their site i stumbled across a quote from Mike Portney in which he stated that Absolution was his favorite album of the last DECADE. well i could only claim ownership of 3 prog cd's at that point, all of them belonging to Dream Theater,and i desperately wanted to branch out. This band from england seemed like a logical next step to me. so i bought it not knowing what to expect, popped it into my CD player, and wow. what a ride. I have owned this cd for quite a long while now and where at times i find myself wearing an album thin, this one has remained a constant in my circulation, tho now done via iPod rather than cd player. and now to the music

i absolutely adore the opener (intro included). its the heaviest piano/synth song i have ever listened to, completely devoid of guitar. Bellamy's vocals are top notch (and on this disc, a coming of age story for the singer as he no longer sounds like Thom York, he sounds like Matthew Bellamy) i love the bass and synth breakdowns. Its just a thounderous track that paints a scene of paranoia and beauty. This is the end of the WORLD!!!

Time is Running Out is more straight forward and catchy, complete with bombastic muse guitar styling and a tasty bass lick. i really like this one. Sing for Absolution is another wonderful piano song, this time soft and fragile. Muse creates a nice spacey atmosphere with this song which flows into the heavy-

Stockholm syndrome. what a riff. Bombastic muse at their best. keyboards and piano soar above the driving bass and chugging guitar and desperate vocals. an absolute standout track. the original (and better) verson of panic attack ; ) falling away with you is yet another simple, more quite song, slightly sub par based on the four monstrous opening tracks but still good, flighty keyboard textures simple guitar big chorus. this fades into Interlude, a 30 second fuzz of guitar that i kinda like. the next track is another absolute monster.

Hysteria. Muse can sure write one heck of a riff. one of the most memorable bass ive heard. I love the faint piano throughout which is masked by the sheer power of the guitar, bass, and drum. its hard to believe three guys can put out such volume and presence. this is very "Thick" music. layered, (nods to devin townsend) , there is simply a lot going on all the time, even in the quit moments.

Blackout is one such song. Orchestral playing layered atop a smooth beat and simple guitar. I LOVE this song. it is just too beautiful to ignore, the slow, winding buildup to a paranoid outburst of desperation. only this time the vocals sound more like the old bellamy which sounded disturbingly similar to another British singer. . .

Butterflies and Hurricanes is, as the title suggests, a song full of contrast. this is the first song in which the structure differs noticeably from the rest of the disc. it is piano driven, but also utillizes the strings of blackout and the thumping base of time is running out. its a fairly upbeat song, which includes the baroque inpired piano string attack that occurs halfway through the song, im very impressed with Bellamy's playing here, it was deffinately unexpected but more than welcomed. the graceful arpeggios simply soar. this was one of my immediate favorites. the break from the piano bridge/breakdown to the chorus is far too choppy tho and my only problem with this song.

The small Print is a good old fashion muse rocker Big, driving, and you guessed it, bombastic. Good song, but nothing special.

I really ike Endlessly. its just has that groove to it that just doesnt allow my head to remain still. great keyboards throughout this song, soft, subtle, graceful, building, while muse continues to layer and layer as the song progresses, i know its nothing extraordinary, its no epic, its no technical marvel, but it works. it is catchy, rich, and full of lovely melodies. great song.

Thoughts of a dying Athiest is another song that starts to sound like another small print ie. good but nothing special. untill the chorus. I dont know whether its becase he sounds so much like Thom York or if they are just both uniquely gifted but Matthew Bellamy can pack on the fear, the anxiety, the desperation better than anyone (since York) The chorus is what makes this song, other than that its a straightforward, unmemorable song, but when it kicks in and bellamy shudders out "It scares the hell out of me. . . ." the song clicks. it holds its own.

Ruled by Secrecy is another desparate vocal showcase, quietly and hauntingly beautiful with the soft piano and quiet drums. great ending. albeit a bit sudden. I have since used this song in roughly 4 short films that i have done that deal with themes of paranoia/otherworldliness and this song fits perfectly.

All in all a completely rewarding and wonderful album, one of the best i have heard in a while from the modern music scene. its not essential, but i believe it to be an excellent addition to ANY prog head's collection. 4 stars and a thank you to mike portney 4 years in the making. highly recommended, especially to those unfamiliar with prog as a genre.

keiser willhelm | 4/5 |


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