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MUSE

Prog Related • United Kingdom


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Muse biography
Muse comprise Matthew Bellamy (lead vocalist, lead guitarist, and pianist), Chris Wolstenholme (bass guitarist) and Dominic Howard (drummer).

Muse came together at the age of 13, although the band was then known as Gothic Plague. The name changed to Fixed Penalty, then Rocket Baby Dolls, and finally to Muse, following a "battle of the bands" competition which they won despite playing music that was overtly aggressive and smashing everything on stage.

In October 1995, Dennis Smith discovered them playing in a Cornish village and eventually offered them free studio time. IN 1998, Muse released their self-titled EP, and the single "Uno".

Following the success of their second single "Cave", they released their first album "Showbiz" in 1999. Produced by John Leckie, who also produced Radiohead's "The Bends", Showbiz drew a lot of criticism for its similarities with Radiohead, but nevertheless was successful - and the only real similarities lie in Matt Bellamy's vocal style.

The following album, "Origin of Symmetry" was also produced by Leckie, but saw Muse becoming more experimental in the ways they created atmospheres; Wind Chimes, Bones, Llama claws and bubble wrap are all used to create effects.

A stream of awards and touring followed, and it wasn't until 2004 that Muse finally released "Absolution". This time they employed Paul Reeve, John Corfield and Rich Costey to handle production. The latter will be familiar to The Mars Volta fans, but had also worked with the likes of Fiona Apple and Philip Glass. Costey's finicky approach to recording and mixing makes "Absolution" stand out from the Leckie produced albums, in that the overall sound is "bigger" and the bombastic nature of the music is underscored heavily.

Following "Absolution"'s huge success Muse confirmed their status with a storming set at Glastonbury in 2004, more awards and singles success.

Two years later, MUSE followed up with their 2006 release Black Holes and Revelations which shot to number one in the U.K. and broke into the top ten in the USA. The album features the songs Starlight, Supermassive Black Hole, and Knights of Cydonia. Rich Costey returned to co-produce the album.

2009 saw the release of The Resistance, which is probably MUSE's most progressive album to-date, which takes a strong influence from QUEEN. The album features the singles The Uprising, Resistance, Undisclosed Desires, and Exogenesis: Symphony, which used up to...
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Buy MUSE Music


The 2nd LawThe 2nd Law
Warner Bros. 2012
Audio CD$3.48
$2.72 (used)
Live At Rome Olympic Stadium (Blu-Ray/CD)Live At Rome Olympic Stadium (Blu-Ray/CD)
Warner Bros. 2013
Audio CD$12.90
$12.89 (used)
The ResistanceThe Resistance
Warner Bros. 2009
Audio CD$3.82
$0.01 (used)
Black Holes & RevelationsBlack Holes & Revelations
Warner Bros / Wea 2006
Audio CD$4.70
$0.99 (used)
Origin of SymmetryOrigin of Symmetry
Maverick 2005
Audio CD$4.38
$2.28 (used)
AbsolutionAbsolution
Warner Bros / Wea 2004
Audio CD$4.98
$2.58 (used)
ShowbizShowbiz
Maverick 1999
Audio CD$3.58
$0.55 (used)
H.A.A.R.P.: Live from Wembley (Region 2 DVD)H.A.A.R.P.: Live from Wembley (Region 2 DVD)
Warner Brothers 2008
Audio CD$9.42
$2.06 (used)
Hullaballo Soundtrack (Bonus CD)Hullaballo Soundtrack (Bonus CD)
Import
WARNER BROS UK 2007
Audio CD$4.21
$2.67 (used)
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MUSE shows & tickets


MUSE has no upcoming shows, according to LAST.FM syndicated events and shows feed

MUSE discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

MUSE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.11 | 186 ratings
Showbiz
1999
3.88 | 272 ratings
Origin Of Symmetry
2001
3.90 | 309 ratings
Absolution
2003
3.60 | 294 ratings
Black Holes And Revelations
2006
3.22 | 270 ratings
The Resistance
2009
3.36 | 137 ratings
The 2nd Law
2012

MUSE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.66 | 55 ratings
Hullabaloo Soundtrack
2002
4.41 | 65 ratings
H.A.A.R.P
2008

MUSE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.88 | 23 ratings
Hullabaloo: Live At Le Zenith-Paris
2002
4.38 | 16 ratings
Absolution Tour
2005
4.00 | 2 ratings
Live at Rome Olympic Stadium
2013

MUSE Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

MUSE Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.00 | 5 ratings
This Is A Muse Demo
1995
3.05 | 10 ratings
Newton Abbot Demo
1997
2.48 | 16 ratings
Muse
1998
2.50 | 12 ratings
Muscle Museum
1999
3.33 | 3 ratings
Uno
1999
3.33 | 3 ratings
Cave
1999
3.25 | 4 ratings
Muscle Museum
1999
3.33 | 3 ratings
Sunburn
2000
3.33 | 3 ratings
Unintended
2000
3.00 | 6 ratings
Random 1-8
2000
3.63 | 8 ratings
Plug In Baby
2001
4.60 | 10 ratings
New Born
2001
3.33 | 3 ratings
Bliss
2001
3.33 | 3 ratings
Hyper Music/Feeling Good
2001
3.89 | 9 ratings
Dead Star - In Your World
2002
4.40 | 5 ratings
Stockholm Syndrome
2003
2.00 | 3 ratings
Time Is Running Out
2003
4.40 | 5 ratings
Hysteria
2003
4.40 | 5 ratings
Sing for Absolution
2004
4.40 | 5 ratings
Apocalypse Please
2004
5.00 | 5 ratings
Butterflies and Hurricanes
2004
2.33 | 3 ratings
Starlight
2006
1.60 | 5 ratings
Knights of Cydonia
2006
2.53 | 18 ratings
Supermassive Black Hole
2006
1.40 | 5 ratings
Invincible
2007
2.33 | 3 ratings
Map of the Problematique
2007
1.40 | 5 ratings
Uprising
2009
1.20 | 5 ratings
Undisclosed Desires
2009
1.40 | 5 ratings
Resistance
2010
3.00 | 3 ratings
Neutron Star Collision (Love Is Forever)
2010
4.23 | 13 ratings
Exogenesis
2010
3.10 | 21 ratings
Survival
2012
1.87 | 25 ratings
The 2nd Law: Unsustainable
2012
1.98 | 26 ratings
Madness
2012
1.50 | 6 ratings
Follow Me
2012
3.22 | 9 ratings
Supremacy
2013
2.17 | 6 ratings
Panic Station
2013

MUSE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The 2nd Law by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.36 | 137 ratings

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The 2nd Law
Muse Prog Related

Review by voliveira

5 stars 9/10

New elements in an album that revisits sounds from the past and points new directions for the future of Muse.

Somehow I knew I was going to like The 2nd Law, without even knowing why. And well, my impressions were correct. Where The Resistance was a difficult effort of appreciation, and it is certainly his weakest album, this one is really an effort much more "digestible", which introduces new sounds for the band at the same time it shows a sense of familiarity revisiting some of sounds they have explored in the past.

There are other sounds too. No Muse album that was so much electronic, and dubstep may shock some (I personally do not like, but in the end did not bother me much). Although electronic music is not my cup of tea - and I have found it unnecessary for the song Follow Me - I have to admit that the beat of Madness is addictive. Speaking of which, I think no other Muse album was so influenced by Queen: there are some passages of Explorers' melody that remind me of the classic Don't Stop Me Now, Madness seems like a modern version of the album Hot Space (and ironically better than many of the songs from that album which is my least favorite of the Queen), and sexy tapping bass-line from Panic Station that opens me back immediately to funky Another One Bites Dust.

And talking about bass ... nothing surprised me in The 2nd Law as Chris Wostenholme assuming the leadership of the vocals on two songs. He sings very well! His voice is fresh, friendly and somehow soft, though sing the heaviest song on the disc, Liquid State. As other members have pointed out, Chris is the member who brings the heaviest ideas to the albums. Besides Liquid State, he sings Save Me, which is my favorite song on the disc and perhaps the most beautiful they've done (besides Falling Away With You). Both deal of his victory against alcoholism, and I must say I'm proud of you Chris! I sincerely hope he will have more opportunities to sing other songs in the next album, bringing the Muse a bit of momentum the Queen, which saw Brian May and Roger Taylor - both excellent vocalists - taking lead vocals on some of the band's songs.

Overall, The 2nd Law to hear it was a very pleasant experience for me. Tied with Origin of Symmetry in the position of my 2nd favorite album, it can alienate some with their electronic elements and some sections that seem derived from other bands or the very old stuff from them, but it is a masterpiece and I'm not ashamed to take this. My favorite songs are: Supremacy, Madness, Panic Station, Survival, Animals, Save Me, Liquid State and the two parts of the title track (the second one I had heard in the film World War Z).

4.5 stars.

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 The Resistance by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.22 | 270 ratings

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The Resistance
Muse Prog Related

Review by voliveira

4 stars 7/10

This is an album that will surely alienate many fans.

At least to me it did not make a good first impression. I was wondering: "what the hell are they doing here?". There seemed to be the same band. Or rather, it was, but with the addition of new elements that do not please me much (in fact I have not yet digested the use of synthesizers, I think it does not suit the Muse, as ironic as that sounds).

Fortunately, from the second addition spent finding more positives. In fact, this here is reinventing itself daring Muse, The Resistance, and although it is by far their weakest album to date is still a great work. Where Black Holes was an effort more affordable (and I have a weakness for music accessible, since it is clever) The Resistance is more pompous and symphonic. Never learned the influences that permeated the previous albums were as evident as here. I even joke to say that this album ushers in a category called "Symphonic Alternative".

Doubt what I'm saying? Then listen to the "Collateral Damage" in United States of Eurasia. " (...) based on Nocturne In E-Flat Major, Op.9 No.2 by Frédéric Chopin.", is what I read on Wikipedia. God, this is so good! It's so rare to see a band with such commercial appeal evoke the influence of classical music. Besides, this song has a bit of Queen-esque, in a more open way than I ever heard in the discography of Muse. This influence is present in other songs, like the title track and Unnatural Selection (a song with which the "old fans" Muse will identify). The orchestra still has a lot of participation on the album - we have a bass clarinet solo in I Belong to You and an interesting mix of orchestral elements and electronic beats in Undisclosed Desires.

But the highlight of this work certainly goes to Exogenesis Symphony. Surely the pinnacle of all that they did, and their longest song (even if divided into three songs of average length), is a combination that to be the biggest dream of Bellamy: can record a full symphonic work coupled with sound he and his companions created for Muse. Certainly their best song, and I really do not understand critics saying she might alienate fans. These comments here on the site! Only I am seeing that this is the most progressive thing they've done?

Well, doing my final impressions, this is an album with severe drawbacks, particularly uninteresting songs and other means, but fortunately it is provided with excellent work and a good use of symphonic elements. 3.5 stars.

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 Black Holes And Revelations  by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.60 | 294 ratings

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Black Holes And Revelations
Muse Prog Related

Review by voliveira

5 stars 9.5/10

Ironically, his least prog album to date is his best album to date.

After the Herculean effort that was enjoying Absolution I feel surprised to have enjoyed Black Holes and Revelations as easily. Almost at my first audition I have ever enjoyed this album. If I listened several times, was simply for the pleasure of hearing him. Many will sizzle because many of the bombastic and progressive elements of its predecessor are gone, with the band going in a direction more accessible and commercial, incorporating new elements (especially electronic, alternative and film), but to hell with that! So I warn you: if you are a purist progressive or step foot here.

The album begins with Take a Bow. It is known that Muse has a tendency to ambitious and bold letters, and this is no different, dealing with corruption - a theme that pervades the album. The song opens with electronic effects, and I thought: "electronics? Seriously?", But then I was surprising. The truth is that this song is more like a kind of overture, an astonishing crescendo filled with plaintive vocals. The song ends explosively, and binds to hit Starlight. About this song, some may turn up their noses, but I confess I have a weakness for songs accessible. Not to mention that riff it is familiar to me. It is a song that reminds me a lot Coldplay, and if you look at the piano line reminds me the song Viva la Vida (which would only be released two years later).

Now, Supermassive Black Hole is one of the strangest songs that Muse has ever done. With a pulsing electronic beat and addictive, was the band's first song I ever heard (in the movie Twilight - and no, I'm not proud of it). But recently I discovered that music was theirs. Map of Problematique is an energetic song, with an interesting drum set completed by the piano absolutely fantastic. Soldier's Poem is a simple song and acústcia with Howard using "broom sticks" and some vocal harmonies that remind me of Queen. Invincible is a mix of alternative rock with guitars Gilmour-esque, starting as if it were a kind of gear and headed towards a sound heavier on his end. Muse Assassin is flirting with progressive metal, and who knows not fall well on an album like Octavarium? Exo-Politics is a strange song about aliens, but with a very cool rhythmic marking. I really like the guitar work here.

The last three bring the album to a new direction, totally unlike anything they've ever done. City of Delusion combines Mediterranean and Mexican music with the typical style of the band (if they have a typical style). Hoodoo (that title makes me think of Hodor, the character of the book series A Song of Ice and Fire) merges western guitars with a seventies rock and classical piano, a delicious mix - and I think I have a problem, but when Bellamy begins to sing, the combination of her voice with the guitar reminds me Maudlin of the Well on his album Part the Second.

But the highlight of the album is up to the last track, Knights of Cydonia. Imagine a mixture of psychedelic rock / space rock with hard rock and western music. Now conceive a clip that mixes westerns with science fiction and martial arts. There, you will have the video of this song. It is one of the best songs they've done, for sure!

PS: there is one last song in some versions, titled Glorious. It's a good song, but there's not required. Knights of Cydonia would be a thousand times better closure.

5 stars. Not a prog masterpiece, but a masterpiece of rock.

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 Absolution by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.90 | 309 ratings

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Absolution
Muse Prog Related

Review by voliveira

4 stars 8/10

Listen Absolution was a challenge for me. I think he, like Lateralus, was the album that I heard repeated more times to make a review here on the site. Simply could not have formed an opinion about it. There was a sense of division within me, considering both the positive and the negative points.

In the end, I conclude that this is not a masterpiece.

It is arrogant. Yes, arrogant. What better word to describe it? Arrogant, ambitious, pretentious? All those adjectives fall very well. We know that Muse is a band of simple tastes, always being eclectic and bold, but I think here they crossed the line. The structure of the album just does not work as well as its predecessor Origin of Symmetry (which I found to be much better). While there are a lot of songs that will certainly enter the ranks of the best they've done, there are others that make me twist the nose.

I still can not digest a song like Thoughts of a Dying Atheist. I think so far is the worst they've done. To tell the truth, both she and Small Print Endlessly seem as out of place in the structure of the album (although the other two are still relatively good). I think if they were not here I would easily provide a rating of 5 stars. Hysteria also seems somewhat disposable, and I can not stand the introduction of Time is Running Out (because of her I refused to listen to the entire album for some time - before you hear it to make my review). We have an Overture which reminds me of The Wall (listen Bring The Boys Back Home, and you'll understand what I'm talking about) and a Range. Short tracks, and just opening transition.

Now, the other ...

I do not know where to start. Well, I think there are three big favorite here. Stockholm Syndrome is a metal monster, like Butterflies and Hurricanes is a classical band in the best sense - and notice how both together can form "Never Enough" Dream Theater (well, they never denied the inspiration to the song, is not it?) ! And Falling Away With You is a beautiful romantic track which escapes the clichés of a genre. The influences of classical music are still manifesting in Blackout and opening imposing Apocalypse Please (Piano Matthew is even more present here, stealing the scene as the bass did on the previous album), plus highlights of Sing for Absolution Ruled by the closure secrecy.

Overall, Absolution is a great album, but not a masterpiece. Is somewhat uneven, and I do not want to sound an annoying saying I did not like him, but somehow I do not think is all that talk. 4 stars.

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 Absolution by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.90 | 309 ratings

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Absolution
Muse Prog Related

Review by rogerthat

5 stars Circa 2013, Muse may have settled into a somewhat predictable pattern (ironically having attained some career highlights like performing at the Olympics in the process). But in 2004, they were younger and fresher and consolidated their earlier promise to produce a masterpiece and arguably the finest of their six studio albums. They also don't sound as hung up on Queen at this point!

Rather, the most positive aspect of Absolution is its eclecticism. As I did in my Strange Days review, I will use two songs to develop this point. Small Print is violent enough to thrill a metalhead (if said metalhead is prepared to look beyond Bellamy's delivery) and that is no mean feat in terms of the aggression quotient. Just the opening bars, THOSE riffs, are headbanging manna for sure.

Which is fine as far as it goes because the quintessential metal sound has become somewhat ubiquitous in the noughties. No, the thing is Muse also perform the lovely ballad Falling Away with You. This is not your typical cliched 80s style power ballad stuff. It has moments that are utterly delicate, sensitive...and moving though I do object mildly to the loud volume of the drums in many places. To me, it appears well beyond the grasp of a typical metal band (or a typical Britpop band at the other end of the spectrum), to straddle both extremes, especially on the same album. Muse not only do so but also internalize these extremes, with everything else in between, into a style readily identifiable as theirs.

And there's lots of this stuff that slots in between. Sing for Absolution moves a little faster than Falling Away With You and follows a more typical soaring pattern but still engages with the sheer power of Muse's delivery. Endlessly sees the band dabbling rather tastefully in more electronic based music. Ruled by Secrecy vaguely evokes Crime of the Century. There are also other crushing rockers apart from Small Print like Stockholm Syndrome and Hysteria.

And make no mistake, there are the usual Queen-isms too, most notably Apocalypse Please and Butterflies and Hurricanes. On the latter, Bellamy's voice is especially reminiscent of Freddie Mercury, though not quite as captivating in my humble opinion. But the piano interlude on Butterflies and Hurricanes gets pretty far out, not quite very typical of Queen.

If I had to use one track to sum up the album, it would be Butterflies and Hurricanes, which particularly dazzled me when I listened to this album for the first time. Muse fit varied styles into songs with relatively straight up structures but involving instrumental virtuosity and deliver these in a manner that is intense and power packed. This is rock music on steroids. There are no half measures for Muse. They are out to dazzle you and sweep you off their feet and how can they not with their enormous talent. Of course, such an approach may not appeal to all and the band tends to divide listeners. But if you are in for the ride, you are probably going to love all of it.

Or, nearly. I do have some reservations about Bellamy's singing. His diction lacks clarity and the hiccup-like sharp intake of breath he indulges in between lines is off putting for me (and from a technical point of view, I am curious as to how he manages this all the time without hurting his voice as the 'onset of breath' sounds too drastic). He also avoids gritty singing on the rockers and it would improve their appeal if he could. Still, he has a pretty powerful voice and belts it out and it has a pleasant timbre when he is singing softly so I will take it.

Perhaps, what Roger Waters said of Dark Side of the Moon is true for other bands too. Maybe bands do strive to give their all and get their act together on one album to deliver one magnum opus. Afterwards, they may not have fuel in the tank for another. And if even they do deliver, fans of one magnum opus may judge the other too harshly from their biased prism (see Radiohead). At any rate, Black Holes and Revelations doesn't seem to have been that one for Muse. They have got time on their side and hopefully they can obliterate all in their path yet again as they did with Absolution. Until then...

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 Origin Of Symmetry by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2001
3.88 | 272 ratings

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Origin Of Symmetry
Muse Prog Related

Review by voliveira

5 stars 9/10

A bolder step, revealing more of the genius of one of the greats of modern music.

If the debut Showbiz alienated some people (I'm not being included), Origin of Symmetry definitely consolidated the success of Muse. Sound more ambitious and ferocious than its predecessor, the band really starts to gain the prominence it deserves, while it is clear that its various influences - from classical music romantic (as evident in the always well used piano Bellamy ) the space rock, with very prominent pro progressive rock and alternative.

Perhaps the biggest difference between Origin of Symmetry and Showbiz is the greater presence of bassist Chris Wolstenholme. Practically in some songs is the distorted bass who is the main driver, with the guitar being conducted Bellamy pro background. With this, the lead singer of the band has a chance to stand out more on vocals and piano and string arrangements and keyboards - see just how sublime with which he uses the church organ in closer Megalomania (which appropriate title). It's my favorite track here. Tell me what he can't do!

The average of the music is higher than in Showbiz with three of them exceeding six minutes - all of which my favorite as well as Megalomania. New Born is a demonstration of the power of low Wolstenholme, especially when it explodes in about a minute and a half. Space Dementia is a legitimate range of space rock, with distorted vocals and electronic effects really cool. And Citizen Erased is a crowd favorite, one killer riff with a great driving, until in about five minutes the music suddenly calms down, leading to a great end. Other highlights include Hyper Music, the sinister Micro Cuts with their alternating bars and more a display of Bellamy's falsetto, Screenager with his percussion and Latin flavor and deliciously sexy Feeling Good, a song that my girlfriend and I both enjoyed. Incidentally, I owe her my entry in the world of Muse and therefore will be dearly grateful. God, how I love her!

4.5 stars, rounded up.

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 The 2nd Law by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.36 | 137 ratings

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The 2nd Law
Muse Prog Related

Review by Memo_anathemo

4 stars Muse formula to success is simple: a couple of songs for MTV, another couple for a soundtrack in a box office movie and that's it. The rest of the album is always excelent. I love the music in this album, maybe some of them are not that real prog but they are good songs indeed. The first track sounds like perfect for a James Bond movie, with excellent orchestration, and the typical low verse part rising to a climax in the chorus. The second track is a complete tribute to Queen, the choruses, the guitar, the way Matthew sings ... Really good indeed. The next songs are well performed, well arranged. Matthew is always at a great level, performing and singing. Chris and Dominic have good participation, but I think they have pretty more action, in terms of progressive music, in Sing for Absolution. But the album, as I mentioned above, is really good. The last track, a mini suite, suited perfectly for the World War Z movie, as a background soundtrack, and the song Follow Me, as well for that movie, is really good, though more alternative oriented. Not as excellent as Sing for Absolution, or The Resistance, but The 2nd Law is another proof of how one band can be successful and be heard by heard by all the world, making music for the masses, subliminally and taking control of the industry with good compositions.

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 Showbiz by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.11 | 186 ratings

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Showbiz
Muse Prog Related

Review by voliveira

4 stars 8/10

I do not know much of the material of Muse and Radiohead, but I can not help but point out how ridiculous are the comparisons between the two bands.

Especially in the debut of Muse, Showbiz, which was hard (and quickly) criticized for sounding similar to Radiohead. But time proved wise and proved that such criticisms were unfounded. Well, this album may not show the Muse who has been acclaimed as one of the greats of rock today (and as largely responsible for bringing the prog to the masses), but it is certainly a strong debut, bold and eclectic.

That said, there isn't plenty of "progressive" here, but there is a prominence of genres, making it clear why this trio is certainly one of the bands most difficult to classify in terms of sub-genres of rock - and this brings me to the Queen, with which he has been fairly compared (and this is a comparison founded, in my view). The highlights here certainly go to Matt Bellamy, who besides being the main songwriter of the band is still an excellent guitarist, featuring a variety of styles (soil nervous opening Sunburn, through reggae guitar Muscle Museum, the Western sounds in Uno or Gilmour-esque guitarin Hate This and I'll 'love you show how eclectic sound he knows). But as a singer he is kind of an acquired taste for me - his voice reminds me a lot Cedric Bixler-Zavala, the lead singer of The Mars Volta, which is also a case of acquired taste . But commendable is her vocal range, shown especially in the title track, where he abuses the falsetto to reach high notes, an impressive demonstration. The other two members are also quite talented: drums of Dominic Howard is furious and accessible, diversified, and tones of Chris Wolstenholme's bass are excellent, as seen in the track Fillip, for example.

Despite not being a progressive album, this debut Muse pleased me a lot and now gives us an idea of boldness that make this trio acclaimed. 4 stars.

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 Hullabaloo Soundtrack by MUSE album cover Live, 2002
2.66 | 55 ratings

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Hullabaloo Soundtrack
Muse Prog Related

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

3 stars Muse have come a long way since they met in Teignmouth (as most people try to), and this double CD is released in conjunction with the DVD/VHS of the same name that is reviewed later. Matthew Bellamy is one of the true characters of the age, and writes songs that are both compelling and hard to listen to. He combines dissonance and commerciality, going his own way and refusing to conform. This double album contains one disc of B sides and rarities from 1999 ? 2001 while the second disc is taken from two concerts in Paris towards the end of last year.

How can Muse's music be described to those who have not heard it before? Imagine Radiohead being led by someone with a penchant for hard rock guitar and a liberal use of vocal and guitar effects backed by an extremely tight rhythm section. They may be a trio but they certainly don't sound like it. They have still to make the premier league but moment certainly can't be far away.

There are just so many powerful songs on the first disc that it is hard to think that they were only deemed strong enough to be backing numbers. I would have liked to have had some information in the booklet about what was recorded/released when. But the first disc is just a taster, as the riffing guitar fades in and out of the speakers and the band blast into "Dead Star" at the beginning of the concert. This song epitomises the band, in that it goes from full-on hard rock to atmospheric with strange Bowie-esque vocals, and the band throwing their all into the music.

Muse may be an acquired taste but more and more people are finding out the joys.

Originally appeared in Feedback #69, Aug 02

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 The 2nd Law by MUSE album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.36 | 137 ratings

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The 2nd Law
Muse Prog Related

Review by Gatot
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars For practical reason I always rip my CDs right away after purchase to my iPod so that I can play it anytime I want. I sometime transfer them into a SD card and then insert it into my portable speaker to be mounted at my bicycle. One day when I rode my bicycle I was surprised with a track that sounded very rocking and I was not aware what that track was coming from - which band and which album? I thought it was something like Rush or any other hard rock bands like Audioslave or others maybe. I finally got to know when the second track was played as that was the kind of music I have been aware of: Muse! And well yeah ...the track that I was not familiar with was the opening track of 2nd Law album: Supremacy.

Yes, I have to admit that through this first track I almost don't recognize that this is Muse because it's so rocking and I really enjoy it. The way Bellamy sings is really wonderful and the song itself has a very good composition let alone the powerful meaning of the lyrics. I thought that Muse has changed music direction with this kind of rockin' opening track that finally becomes my favorite as well. The second track Madness represents the typical music of Muse. Panic Station is another good track with a straight forward composition. This album represents Muse existence in the tradition of British pop music with strong flavour of rock. The album has powerful message, lyric-wise. There are some orchestration like Prelude to open the next track Survival, as well as the one presented at the epic The 2nd Law: Unsustainable and Isolated System. I like these last two tracks that form like an epic, especially with some narration as well as the use of sound effects.

Overall, it's a very good album which I can enjoy from start to end. There are some progressive elements inserted in some segments in the album. It's a nicely-composed album. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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