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There’s More To Muse Than A Radiohead Cover Band

Topics: Music | 1 CommentBy admin | October 6, 2009

If you’ve dismissed Muse as a Radiohead clone like I did, give them another try. Just don’t bother listening to them as mp3′s on your iPod.

I made the mistake back in 2003 of glossing over the band Muse because of their shameless Radiohead-ness. At the time, listening to Muse when Radiohead existed felt like listening to Coldplay when there’s a U2 around. Except I actually like Radiohead. All of which, in spite of being the perception of the music press in general, is incredibly unfair. In a way I’m glad I glossed over Muse like did, because after finally exhausting all the Radiohead in existence, it’s like there’s a back-catalogue to explore. Except when you finally give Muse a chance, you realize there are layers and layers and layers, and the comparison to Radiohead becomes incredibly inaccurate. My re-Muse-ment began when I saw the video for their new tune Uprising featured here (which seems, alas, to only be available at MTV.com. Apologies in advance for the commercials). In spite of the tune’s over-the-top “anthem for the common man” theme, I found myself nodding along with it, and ended up watching the video for Supermassive Black Hole from their 2006 release Black Holes And Revelations. I was sunk at this point, as I decided to dig back into my music collection. Starting with 2003′s Absolution, I almost wrote them off again. The first track – Apocalypse Please – is so Radiohead-esque that I was sure my resistance was legit. But I slowly realized it was actually just a good way to ease into their broader sound. By the time I got to Sing For Absolution, I was sunk. If you compared this tune to anything, I’d say it sounds like Freddie Mercury joined Depeche mode and got remixed by Trent Reznor. I’m not going to prattle on here, Muse has been written about plenty, but if, like me, you’ve written Muse off in the past, give them another spin. There’s a lot more there than Radiohead. And I’d add that if you’re going to listen to their stuff as crappy mp3′s on your iPod, DON’T BOTHER. Almost all their stuff demands the dynamic range that mp3′s simply don’t have. And it sounds best blasting out of your speakers at a volume that annoys the neighbors and renders conversation impossible.

After you buy the CD on Amazon….

Try to find me a copy of the limited edition box set for Christmas:

Read Comments

  1. Posted by Sam on 04.14.11 9:38 am

    Agreed. orogin of symmetry is an awesome album. songs like micro cuts, space dementia, and citizen erased. show what muse is capable of