Muse - The 2nd Law review

the 2nd law, muse albums, best albums, muse, matthew bellamy, madness
It's been a while. For all 2 of you who wonder where I ran off to, let's just say that I needed to take a journey, a walkabout if you will, to find myself. Only after losing myself completely did my spirit guide lead me to my all-important destiny, reviewing mediocre consumer goods. So, I'm back, end of story.

It actually took something that I'm incredibly interested in to bring me back to the fold. That thing is the newest album from the British prog-rockers, Muse. You only have to read my concert review to find out how far my fanboy status goes with these guys.

It has been 3 long years since Muse released The Resistance, an album I have enjoyed more every time I hear it. In fact, each of their albums (with exception to Showbiz) are nearly perfect. And that's why it grieves me to say that Muse has hit a stumbling block with The 2nd Law.

I thought Matthew Bellamy could do no wrong. I would let him sing Dora the Explorer songs in falsetto and it would still be classified as art. But something happened in the production of this album. (I blame Kate Hudson) It's almost as if he recorded about 6 songs and took a break, and when he came back, the album was finished somehow. I'm going to break this down track by track.

1 - Supremacy
Great opening track. Starts the epic rocking combined with a string section, because well, it's Muse. Once this song starts I'm immediately excited to listen to the entire album.

2 - Madness
Somehow Muse has made a sexier song than Supermassive Black Hole. This song might get a little dubstep-py for some, but I think it has the perfect mix of electronica and melody. This is a step in the right direction for the band.

3 - Panic Station
The first time I heard this song I was annoyed. The first 20 seconds sound like a bad Prince song, but then the chorus hits and it picks up. The second time I heard it, I somehow loved it. It's one of my favorites on the album, even if it does veer into Prince territory.

4 & 5 - Prelude & Survival
It makes me mad that they wasted an entire track to a 40 second lead-in for Survival. But the 2 tracks combined make for magic. If I hadn't heard this song during the Olympics months ago, it would be on constant repeat. The lyrics are a little shallow, but it's forgiven because the song freakin' rocks!

6 - Follow Me
Almost starts to follow the mediocre ballad, Soldier's Poem, but is saved with (dare I say it) Erasure style theatrics. Not the most memorable song, but I won't skip it when it plays on shuffle.

7 - Animals
This song is great, it almost belongs on Origin of Symmetry or Absolution. Its many layers are helped by the beauty of the lead guitar. Easily one of the best tracks here, but gets lost in the 2nd half of the album.

8 - Explorers
I guess I wanted more rock anthems and am disappointed there aren't more. This ballad purposely tries to sing you to sleep. It's a very pretty song and similar to Invincible from Black Holes & Revelations.

9 - Big Freeze
The beginning of the end. It's not a terrible song, but it does sound like something that Bellamy wrote in the mid 90's. It's easy to listen to, but I'd probably skip this on shuffle.

10 & 11 - Save Me & Liquid State
Here we are. The most questionable decision by the band to date. Why, oh why, did they allow Chris the bassist to write and sing 2 tracks on an already short album? The songs are very personal to him, and about kicking his alcoholism and blah, blah, blah... and I respect that, but 2 whole tracks!? It's sadly a waste, and they sound like mediocre 311 songs to boot. (Every 311 song) Poor choice.
muse bassist, bassist singing, save me, liquid state, where is matt
It's like letting The Edge sing...oh wait a minute...
12 & 13 - Unsustainable & Isolated System
I can see why people hate Unsustainable. Beyond the symphonic lead-in, this song is not Muse. Even they said they made this song after seeing Skrillex have sex with a fax machine (possibly true). I wanted more rock anthems, so this one does me nicely. Plus it's a good angry song. Isolated System is very pretty and feels like a continuation of their Exogenesis symphony. It's a beautiful song but feels like a wasted track with Bellamy's vocals.

Do I still love Muse? Absolutely. But this is their second worst album. Their are some standout tracks but a lot of wasted potential. There is a problem when the voice that Muse is known for is only present on 8 out of 13 tracks. I'm sorry to do this to you Muse but you deserve 3 1/2 stars.


Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More

Powered by Blogger
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...