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I've been a loyal Muse fan for about seven years now and every album they've released has been consistently beautiful and utterly amazing. Their unique and fantastic lyrics, vocals and melodies are why these great English rock eccentrics are my favourite band of all time.
The Resistance is, without a doubt, my favourite Muse album of all time. It tells a gorgeous story of rebellion against a corrupt force--'the Resistance'--and humankind's journey to the beginning of a new life on a distant world. It's emotional, engaging, powerful, and utterly perfect in all ways. It speaks of wars, desire, government conspiracies, atheist values and the future of humanity. Matt Bellamy's talent as a guitarist, vocalist and song writer is evident in this album just as it is in the others, but the Resistance in particular was clearly written and recorded with passion and heart, and it most definitely shows.
From romantic French lyrics to three part symphonies, the Resistance is unlike any album I have ever listened to, and I truly love it with all my heart--some of it was even breathtaking enough to make me cry! This album is, quite literally, perfection in the form of genius music. I thoroughly recommend it to anyone.
The Resistance is the fifth studio album released by my favourite band of all time, Muse. It came out in September 2009 and of course I rushed to buy it straight away! The album met with huge commercial success and was largely applauded by the critics. It even won a Grammy for Best Rock Album.
The album followed on from the precedent set by the band's earlier releases. If possible it's even more epic, overblown and dramatic than previous work. Subtle it ain't, but if you like big, dramatic rock music then Muse are your band and this is your album! The Resistance is built around themes of resistance, rebellion, conspiracy theories, love and even space travel. The three-part Exogenesis Symphony that closes the album is a fantastic and a unique experience, combining classical influences with rock sounds in a dramatic story of a destroyed Earth and a new society.
Away from this ambitious piece of music, the other tracks on the album also stand out. Opener Uprising is a stomping piece of rock music about paranoia and rebellion. Resistance is a dramatic love song while Undisclosed Desires is the 'RnB' song of the album - less overly dramatic than the other tracks but it's lovely and really gets into your head. Queen-inspired United States of Eurasia is another huge song while things slow down a bit for Guiding Light. Unnatural Selection is a song I really like despite the chorus bearing an uncanny resemblance to ABBA's 'Lay All Your Love On Me', while MK Ultra is another fantastic rock song that leads into the bouncy and different I Belong To You.
3. Undisclosed Desires
4. United States of Eurasia
5. Guiding Light
6. Unnatural Selection
7. MK Ultra
8. I Belong To You (+ Mon Coeur S'Ouvre a Ta Voix)
9. Exogenesis: Symphony Part 1 (Overture)
10. Exogenesis: Symphony Part 2 (Cross-Pollination)
11. Exogenesis: Symphony Part 3 (Redemption)
I think this album is fantastic and every track is brilliant, albeit for different reasons. I know The Resistance is enjoyed by many people who never used to be Muse fans, and often disliked by longstanding fans, but personally I love all their albums including this one. I can even forgive the band's unfortunate association with the Twilight franchise. The release of the album was accompanied by a promotional tour and I was lucky enough to see them while I was living in Sheffield. Muse are most definitely on top form and I can't wait for their next album!
With this review I will be completing my mini-quest of reviewing all of Muse's studio albums. It's been fun, and I've actually thought about several of the albums in a new and different way while writing, noticing the evolution of the band's sound to a far greater degree...
"The Resistance" is the 5th and most recent studio album by Muse, released in September 2009. In its content, it is quite similar to their previous album "Black Holes & Revelations", with space exploration, political themes, and conspiracy-based ideas featuring regularly. This is also true in terms of musical styling; the raw and edgy sound which used to characterise Muse has gradually given way to a more polished, synthesised feel, but one which seems to register on a much grander scale. Muse have always had heavy classical influences, but they are even more apparent on this album, which features a version of Nocturnes, Op. 9 by Chopin, and a 3-part Symphony as the concluding 3 tracks.
What has remained the same is the incredible desire to create original, exciting music, the passion for creating that music, and most importantly the skill and musicianship to make it happen. Muse are undoubtedly one of the most talented trios of rock musicians around:
Matt Bellamy takes lead vocals with an amazing range, plays lead guitar, brilliant piano sections, and arranges the string sections of the songs incredibly well. Dom Howard provides the driving percussion, which never really takes a back seat, and would be worth listening to in isolation. Finally Chris Wolstenholme's bass playing features some incredible riffs and provides an infectious rhythm throughout (he also occasionally dabbles with harmonica - see their live shows for this).
Now, back to "The Resistance". Although Matt Bellamy is recognised as an incredible lead guitarist, there are more tracks on this album than ever which don't feature a guitar at all. Instead it is far richer in both synthesised and classical sounds, and definitely takes Muse further in the evolution of their sound. It continues in the vein of "Black Holes & Revelations" in featuring several more 'radio-friendly' tracks, such as album opener "Uprising" and titular track "The Resistance". Indeed, much like "Starlight", from Black Holes, "Uprising" is a regular feature on Chris Evans' morning radio show - it's great to see a band such as Muse being more accessible and being appreciated by a wider audience, but this could be seen as indicative of a softening of their sound.
I have to admit that when people now say how much they love Muse, I am immediately sceptical. I think 'do you really love Muse, or do you just like their most recent 4 singles, or the songs they've used in the Twilight films?' I've heard "Uprising" used in many TV montages and adverts, and when I saw my girlfriend watching 'Strictly Come Dancing' last year, and noticed a celebrity couple grooving to "Supermassive Black Hole", I did shout 'this has gone too far!' I know that many people who have enjoyed these songs would be quite taken aback when listening to the whole album, and would find it a bit too 'rocky' or 'edgy', but I just hope that Muse don't move too close to the middle of the road, and keep making their fans happy.
Now I'll go through a quick run-down of some of the stand-out tracks:
1 - Uprising - The album opener has been the big single of the album so far. With an opening riff reminiscent of Doctor Who, and engaging chant-along chorus, this is a fun, slightly rocky, but accessible song. Good stuff and it has spirit, but lacks some cutting edge.
2 - The Resistance - A catchy piano riff and great bassline make this an up-tempo and exciting track. The chorus again works really well, with Chris's backing vocals fitting very well with Matt's lead. Again this is a very good track, but probably a little tame for Muse if I'm being critical.
3 - Undisclosed Desires - Muse do R&B, and do it well. This at first sounds similar to a lot of modern R&B music, but its distinguishable by the fact that it has a great string arrangement accompanied by synthesisers, Matt Bellamy's unique voice and lyrical themes with significantly more depth than 'booty shaking', 'sipping gin and juice', or 'getting on the floor'
4- United States of Eurasia (+Collateral Damage) - Wow! A real highlight of the album, this track is different and interesting. It features a unique riff which is almost Arabian-sounding, and deserves a special mention for the way that it was released. Muse fans from around the world cooperated, actually deciphering online codes and collecting hidden packages in major cities around the world to unlock parts of the song - ingenious!
6 - Unnatural Selection - The best track on this album. A subdued church organ introduction gives way to an absolutely belting riff, which is almost reminiscent of "Newborn" from the band's second album, "origin of Symmetry". Its driving, angst-fueled power is a real Muse signature - more of this please! The song breaks down into a slower, dirty-blues sound in the middle, and then erupts again with a variation on the leading riff to bring the track to a great conclusion.
9, 10, 11 - Exogenesis (Symphony) - In a word, ambitious. The final three tracks of the album form a symphony on the theme of life spreading to other planets. This is Muse on a grand scale, showing the lofty ambitions and musical prowess of the band. It has a familiar Muse sound, featuring great classical arrangement, beautiful piano and guitars, and Matt Bellamy's full vocal range up to piercing falsetto, but wrapped up in a new type of package.
It has weaker points, but there is a lot here to enjoy, and personally I would quite like to hear another effort in this vein from the band.
To summarise, "The Resistance" is a very good album from a great band. Overall it lacks the rawness and bite of Muse's earlier work, but is still an accomplished album, full of originality and enjoyable songs, great riffs and top musicianship. Muse are still producing exciting music, and long may they continue!
3 Undisclosed Desires
4 United States Of Eurasia (+Collateral Damage)
5 Guiding Light
6 Unnatural Selection
7 Mk Ultra
8 I Belong To You (+Mon Coeur S'ouvre A Ta Voix)
9 Exogenesis : Symphony Part I (Overture)
10 Exogenesis : Symphony Part Ii (Cross Pollination)
11 Exogenesis : Symphony Part Iii (Redemption)
I have always been a big Muse fan but was bitterly dissapointed with Black Holes and Revalations which although good, didn't sound like Muse. It lacked the punch of the previous albums and the songs never sat right with older ones.
This album, to me, signals the end of a great band. It lacks the creative nature of previous albums and any killer track (Uprising is good but can you really compare it with some of the older songs?). They seemed to have moved into mainstream and 'undisclosed desires' is so un Muse that I thougt I was listening to someone else!
The bass and drums save this for me - they are always top notch. Bellamy seems bored and looks to have given in to the mainstream style of music - which is something I never thought they would do.
Some sections are great though but its only is short bursts. I miss the guitar riffs of old which have gone AWOL after the last two albums. I tried very hard to like this album but it doesn't compare to their other albums.
If you haven't heard Muse before you will like this. If you have then you will find it very hard to say this is one of their best albums.
Muse are my favourite band, there unique sound and fusion of many different musical genres has always set them apart from other bands. Listening through the other Muse albums in order you can see the progression of there music with each album sounding different, The Resistance album follows on from this tradition in great style, the music sounds bigger and less condensed then in some previous albums. There is a lot of focus on classical music in this album with 5 of the 11 tracks classically based. This album is a joy to listen to as it's so fresh and original; I will give a personal review to each song on the album and give my rating out of 5.
The bass intro to this is fantastic not as fantastic as the Hysteria bass intro but sounds awesome I admit it does sound a little similar to the Starlight bass intro but hey I don't mind. After a while we are greeted with a Sci-Fi synth before we get to the singing. After the first singing section we go back to the start bass line but this time the guitar kicks in and the song feels as though it's taken off. We then have the guitar solo which is good and repeats itself a few times before going back into the chorus then appears to end, but comes back on for a bit which I am not a big fan of. The live version has a far better ending in my opinion.
70's style springs to mind with this song its got the bass drums, the catchy little piano riff, some great lyrics, a deserving song for the album to be named after. My favourite part of this song is the pre chorus "could be wrong could be wrong" but it should have been right" It works well with Matt singing a line and then Chris. Muse certainly have a knack for creating great music.
UNDISCLOSED DESIRES 4/5
When you first hear this song you get the impression you're listening to a Timberland R&B track until Matt starts singing. I find this track very catchy with the string samples and rhythm of the music. There is no guitar or piano in this song which is a first, but it looses none of its Muse magic.
UNITED STATES OF EURASIA (+collateral damage) 5/5
Perhaps my favourite song from this album, at first it sounds quite dry and monotone, but it bursts into life with a rise in volume and into one of my favourite sections of music. A violin driven Asian influenced piece accompanied by the piano, the track all of a sudden is transformed into something fresh, alive and filled with so much energy. The Asian music stops and we go back to a fuller version of the start before once again leading to the classical Asian music. At the end of the Asian music this time we are greeted with a Bohemian Rhapsody style end Queen would be proud of before leading into collateral damage which is essentially a cover of Nocturnes, Op. 9 by Chopin.
GUIDING LIGHT 4/5
The intro to this song, screams stadium rock, in some respects the drum beat can be called a new "We Will Rock You" different of course it just has that vibe. This song sounds almost like opera in the way in which it is song. The bass line is very refreshing and holds together the piece perfectly. The guitar solo is amazing dare I reference Queen again. The end of it is slightly hidden as Matt starts singing over it but that's not exactly a bad thing.
UNATURAL SELECTION 4/5
Starting on a church organ at first I was wondering where this song was going but all of a sudden the guitar kicks in and a progressive riff (like the new born one but different) makes your mouth open and you cant help but nod your head to the beat.
There are parts of this song which remind me of System of a Down which is good for me I love System of a Down. The progressive riff is played through out the song and never loses its appeal. The guitar solo is good and breaks the song up nicely. The outro is epic it leads to a metal piece which ends the song nicely, although I have often thought it would make a good start to another song.
MK ULTRA 5/5
Its hard to find words to describe this song, It is very fast paced at the start with an awesome riff I can describe as trance music, which leads it to some fantastic vocals, the middle of the song slows down and you feel as though your waiting for something, then it kicks off and it goes to pure rock and role before returning to the second part of the song which include some fantastic vocals. The song ends on the rock and roll part, which as awesome as it is has lost some of its magic after it being used right after the slow part in the middle of the song.
I BELONG TO YOU (+Mon coeur s'ouvre à ta voix) 3/5
This song is probably my least favourite on the album; I enjoy listening to it none the less. The song was used in a Twilight film the 2nd one I think I'm not sure I don't like twilight. Anyways the song has a kind of has a jazz classical theme going on, it starts in a R&B style, first time I listened to I was like way hay this is catchy, all of sudden the song turns into French while a cover version of Samson and Delia is being played on piano, it then appears to end only for violins to come in and some singing then appears to end again before a new section with a wind instrument. I think this song is very creative but goes on a little to long for my liking.
EXOGENOSIS: SYMPHONY PART 1 (overture) 5/5
This is my favourite song on the album the slow orchestral intro slowly building up into a spine tingling orchestral piece before you know it drums are coming in and the vocals blow you away, moving is the right word. That is a nice sounding high pitched voice, a win for Matt lol. As we reach just over half way in the song the guitar kicks in and the vocals double up and it just sounds incredible.
EXOGENOSIS: SYMPHONY PART 2 (cross-pollination) 4/5
The second part of the Exogenesis Symphony starts and ends with a fantastic piano piece. It has to be said this is my least favourite part to the symphony I think it because it's the most rock based one apart from the intro and outro. After the intro it builds up into a drum driven piece with the orchestral music coming through before dying into the outro.
EXOGENOSIS: SYMPHONY PART 3 (redemption) 5/5
Relaxing and at peace comes to mind for this song a very moving piano piece leading to a nice vocal harmony consisting of the same few words before leading back to the piano piece doesn't sound too good, but I enjoy this track It makes me feel at ease a great way to end this incredible album.
This album is a joy to listen too, it is very different from other Muse albums but it's lost none of that uniqueness and originality. Muse have demonstrated they are sensational musicians there range of music is massive and I think this albums defines that. I recommend you give it a listen.
English progressive rockers Muse are renowned for their stadium filling extravaganza's of wild energetic revolutionary fused rock! The Teignmouth Trio of Matt Bellamy, Chris Wolstenholme and Dominic Howard formed 'Muse' in 1994. In the early nineties the trio were all members of different bands, but in an attempt to win a battle of the bands contest in their hometown, the trio joined forces and notably went on to win, thus taking their new found stardom seriously, and after a few different names changes 'Muse' decided to go full time moving from the sleepy depths of Devon to successfully establish themselves in British rock history with an enigmatic heavy metal presence, blending into space rock/electronica sounds
Matthew Bellamy - Lead Vocals / Guitars / Keyboards
Chris Wolstenholme - Bass guitar / Backing vocals / Harmonica
Dominic Howard - Drums / Percussion / Synthesizers / Backing Vocals
ALBUM - THE RESISTANCE
The Resistance is the fifth studio album released by Muse in September 2009. It follows on where Black Holes and Revelations finished, fighting an Inter galactic war, but this time on a grander more expansive stage, its main theme is largely again about love, political corruption and the alien invasion, and the search for a new world. On its release it topped the charts in 19 countries, included the number 3 spot in the U.S. It generally received a warm reception from most critics praising the ambitious scale Muse had tried to deliver. To date three singles have been released in the UK the first and opening track 'Uprising' which reached as high as number nine, second release was 'Undisclosed Desires', which only reached number forty nine in the UK charts, Muse's lowest chart entry since 1999. Third single 'Resistance' which sadly only reached number thirty eight in the UK charts, but fairing much better in the U.S
Origin of Symmetry (2001)
Black Holes and Revelations (2006)
The Resistance (2009)
1. UPRISING (5:03)
Uprising the opening track and the first single to be released is about protest, the standing up against global corporations, corrupt bankers, and government officials, it's largely about social mistrust and the inability to stand up for our rights, just accepting them and keeping quiet, but of course the Knights of Muse are here to save us. 'Paranoia is in bloom / The PR, transmissions will resume / They'll try to, push drugs that keep us all dumbed down / And hope that, we will never see the truth around' - A brilliant opener, constant throbbing drum line, overlapped with synths and an awesome spiked riff, Bellamy wailing 'come on' throughout gives this character, and really inspired you to believe the theme behind the song, this electro styled glam rock stomp its very addictive, understated but fairly triumphant. Cracking start to the album 7/10
2. RESISTANCE (5:46)
Resistance was the third single released of the album, its ultimately a love song, and how Forbidden love offers us freedom in a controlling state, it's an against the odds struggle but one that we will triumph, it also challenges the belief how love is diverse enough to cross multiple boundaries, political and religious. It references former song 'Citizen Erased' and the novel 1984 retelling the relationship between Winston and Julia, however I think it also is about Matt and his girlfriend. 'Love is our resistance / They'll keep us apart and they won't to stop breaking us down / Hold me / Our lips must always be sealed' - Quality intro, that's so atmospheric and eerie, ultra dramatic as a feverish rolling drum line is accompanied by sinister single sounds from the piano, until we break into the first verse that's led by the constant haunting chasing drum line and the wailing of Bellamy's breathtaking vocal range, we collide into the chorus and surge up an octave as we seem to hit desperation, overlapping chanting harmonies, keyboards and sinister synthesizers gives it a nice mix up, as the energized riff explodes to give the impression of the fight for survival. Quite surprised this failed so badly in the charts, I guess you need to buy into the theme to appreciate what they are doing here, but it's full of drama and effect, I certainly cannot resist it anyway. 8/10
3. UNDISCLOSED DESIRES (3:54)
Lead Singer Matt Bellamy's favourite song of the album, as it offers something different, Undisclosed Desires it a very personal song about Matt and his girlfriend, and the dark secrets lovers share. 'I want to reconcile the violence in your heart / I want to recognise your beauty's not just a mask / I want to exorcise the demons from your past / I want to satisfy the undisclosed desires in your heart' This is really stripped back and bare, there are no guitars or pianos which infiltrates their normal sound. In its place we have staccato strings layered over an electronic drum machine, which is pretty bland and basic I think, the synths are very ordinary, the only saving grace is the chorus, stacked with harmonies and Bellamy's almost laid back vocals, start to sound a little more yearning. Not one of my favourites but its good to see them trying something more innovative. 5/10
4. UNITED STATES OF EURASISA (+Collateral Damage) (5:47)
The song is from an imaginary musical, searching for peace, and the creation of a new challenge to the political hierarchy. It reflects on how politicians trivialise the killing of innocent people in war, again influenced by novel 1984. 'You and me fall in line / To be punished for unproven crimes / And we know that there's no one we can trust / Our ancient heroes / They are turning to dust' Piano opening, to a mournful Bellamy warbling, until we break into a crescendo of sound, full of stringed instruments, drums, and guitars, sounds like a mix of Eastern promise mixed with Chopin. You can imagine the belly dancers shaking their booty's to the twinkling of the keys. It's based around the piano, which they seem to have introduced it as some sort on concerto. Falsetto vocals and stacked harmonies, chanting the name of the song, make this fairly chaotic rather than a grandiose masterpiece. The ending as you hear jets fly off into the distance is apparently Chopin's 'Nocturne, Op. 9, No. 2' .I really don't like it, the ending is the only guiding light, the vocals are a little flat, and aside from the cracking piano, I just don't really get it, I think it's a case of trying to do to much in a single song 5/10
5. GUIDING LIGHT (4:13)
Guiding light it about troubled relationships, 'When comfort and warmth can't be found I still reach for you / But I'm lost, crushed, cold and confused / With no guiding light left inside'...we break into this rock ballad with a Bon Jovi like entrance, full of swagger and cheese as we salute the booming snare drums, and staccato styled riff. Bellamy's mournful crooning has such passion, his yearnful tones are so effective, but matched by the over powering consistent drum, that kicks in with such a punch. Much simpler than the last, and definitely more effective, a lot like their older sound, a guitar solo in the middle reinstates this, with screaming harmonies overlapping the end of it! Gorgeous poetic anthemic beautiful song that will probably grow and grow, a really guiding light to an already average album. 8.5/10
6. UNNATURAL SELECTION (6.54)
Unnatural selection references how luck plays such an important part of out lives, and where or how we live depicts our future, its also about living in a world that the dominant takes all, how the social divide is gathering dust, and the ideal If we cannot beat the corruption to succeed, join them. 'I'm hungry for some unrest / Lets push this beyond a peaceful protest / I wanna speak in a language that you will understand' Church Organ brings us down the aisle, to a subdued Bellamy, before we turn up the speakers to a powerful set of drums and gritty, speaker distorting guitar riff kick us in! This is already the most rock fuelled track thus far, a song you need exceptional speakers to get full effect. We calms things down a touch, to a more agile, electric riff, to the feathered pitted, pattern of drums! Some chanting makes this a little cheesy, but it's clearly reminiscent of System of a Down, or something similar, its been compared to Queen, but I don't really see it. It's driven by guitars, in your face, bombastic, and takes you on a journey here of highs and lows, the arrangements are perfected, everything fits in well, but another that needs to be played more than once to be appreciated, aggressive rock, love it! 8/10
7. MK ULTRA (4:06)
MK-Ultra is about been brain washed, and the closed door psychological manipulation to gain knowledge and power. Apparently it's a CIA code name that sought out drugs for mind control and interrogation. 'Invisible to all / The mind becomes a wall / All of history deleted with one stroke' This opens up with sliding sinister electronic riffs, it's feverish, atmospheric and feels like something bad is going to happen, overlapped with a simple rolling drum line, and gorgeous up and down tones from Bellamy. It's a sinister song, spiralling noises of espionage. The song is perfect to the lyrics, you really understand the story here, high-low's, and a composition to suit the subtly when needed, as in the chase, to the capture, to the interrogation, whereas its not the best song by sound alone, its gets the message across suitably, first class, and gives a good mix to the album thus far! 6.5/10
8. I BELONG TO YOU (+Mon Coeur s'ouvre a at voix) 5:38
Another epic love song about feeling in debt or grateful to someone for being an inspiration for creating music, it was appended with "(+Mon Coeur S'Ouvre A Ta Voix)",which translates from French into 'My Heart Opens Itself To Your Voice' and is the name of an aria from Camille Saint-Saëns' opera Samson and Delilah. 'I can't find the words to say / They're overdue / I've travelled half the world to say / I belong to you' I think the song is also used on part of the Twilight series, however I could be wrong. We turn down the tempo dramatically here, for this little heartfelt ballad, I think the jazzy piano intro sucks a little here, a bit camp, or too theatrical. It jumps along, to a much different rhythmical feel, its quite unusual and a different stance to its comrades, Matt Bellamy croons in the middle section in French, which he has done in the past on different albums. It's an impressive use of his tones, as he adapts nicely interchanging his moods especially during the chorus lines where he extend words to ...ooooooo!. Towards the end of the track we are introduced to a bass clarinet solo, which I think rocks. Again perhaps not the best ever Muse song you will hear, but you sure do understand the message they are portraying, the quirky ending, and another that does grow on you. 7/10
9/10/11. EXOGENESIS SYMPHONY
This three part saga, explains the final days of humanity on earth, resting final hopes on finding solace or spread humanity to another existing planet somewhere in the universe. it's a grandiose masterpiece full of drama as the story requires. Exogenesis is the ideal that life is spread across the universe, a cross pollination.
PART 1 (OVERTURE) (4.18) - Overture is the acceptance that civilisation will end, it's dramatic, edgy, soft, and pretentious, but I love it, it features an orchestra of over 25 musicians, classically moving to the tenure of Matt Bellamy who arranged all the orchestral pieces and plays the Piano in all three parts. It's a beautiful piece of operatic rock, Bellamy almost classically in tune with the piece, it's amazingly brave but ultimately a lovely piece of music, apparently influenced by Rachmaninov, Strauss and Chopin - PART 2 (CROSS-POLLINATION) (3.56) - Part two, starts with a piano concerto, quite pretty! Its supposed to represent astronauts search for a new civilisation, and there search to find other populated planets, it's the world last hope. Thus in keeping with the theme, it's reflective, with joyous moments but also moments of despair, Cross-Pollination is soaked in dramatics, the strings and piano are quite beautiful, I feel its actually spoilt in the middle section as Bellamy breaks into song, however its not supposed to be a complete Orchestral masterpiece, the mood reflects and changes all the time, until we finish with another piano concerto, which is just beautiful. PART 3 (REDEMPTION) (4.37) - Part three is the realization by the astronauts that its one big cycle, and its up to human civilisation to change things or else. It's quite a calming intro, another piano concerto, which sounds familiar, but no idea to what or which. It's in reflective, sombre mood, almost mournful and sad, but I really like it, but I am actually a fan of classical pieces, in finishes the story off with plenty of reflection and hope. Total length: 54:18
Admittedly when I first listened to The Resistance, I thought it was awful, its definitely an album that grows on you over time. The Resistance follows on where Black Holes finished off, the inter galactic battle of survival, the sequel if you will, full of lyrics from science fiction novels, but expressed to the listener in an expansive operatic rock saga!
Again maybe the theme is cheesy and a little pretentious, but at least its got charisma and flair, and examines aspects that others fail to follow, or should I say explores galaxy's far, far away. It does not preach, or tell us what to do like most other artists, all they ask is you follow this theatrical saga through their music.
The sound has become grander, more expanse, bigger but not necessarily better, full of classical orchestral parts, symphonic suites, and outrageous guitars, booming drum lines, and sizzling strings, multi layered tracks that are arrangement quite beautifully. The melodies are as good as they have even been, concert hall percussion and the audacity to sing in French, makes this a diverse, well though out album.
Matt Bellamy's singing arrangement is practically outstanding, I urge you to find someone better in today's market, his ability to shift in sound from whispering, to mournful sorrow, to the colossal belting of notes, and even the nerve to dip his toe at singing like a tenor, which he just about pulls off.
So does this ambitious effort work? Well I'm not totally convinced, firstly I'd applaud such desire to create a new sound, and explore the unknown, but as a concept, as a whole album I don't really buy into it. It's diverse enough to meet many demands, but kind of leaps from one zone to the next with a totally different angle.
I do like the album, but I'm not in ore of it, I think it matches Black holes but is no better or worse, it fails to really catch my heart, with no track that stands out and grabs you, but I'm not really sure if that's their intention, it's a concept you are buying into. Personally, I prefer album Absolution, as I think they try and stretch themselves to far here.
Guiding light, or Unnatural Selection are possibly my favourites, but I'd say they are all average-ish nothing good, but nothing bad! Each song has something likeable, but as a package not totally convincing. Perhaps the three failed singles released agrees with such opinion.
However I'd still recommend this album, but I'd advise you have to listen to the whole album to appreciate the effort, and once more let it grow on you! Anyone that likes Rock Opera's or something different this would suit you're taste, Muse fans probably wont be disappointed either, and anyone that loves Black Holes and Revelations will love this.
Amazon price : £ 4.93
I have known about muse for quite a long time, but I've never really thought much of their music, more to the point, I'd never really listened to or heared any of their music, so I didn't feel the need to buy any of their albums, recently however, I heard one of their songs, (uprising) on the TV and absolutely fell in love with it! From that moment I knew that I had to buy the whole album.
When I did buy it (£4.99 from amazon) I was plesently surprised as I was expecting all of the songs to be guitar based and quite rocky. But by the time yo ge the third of fourth track, you realise that they play a whole range of music, from rock to part symphony type songs.
Here is a track listing...
3. undisclosed desires
4. united states of eurasia (+collatural damage)
5. guiding light
6. unnatural selection
7. MK ultra
8. I belong to you (+mon coeur s'ouvre a ta voix)
9. exogenisis: symphony part 1 (overture)
10. exogenisis: symphony part 2 (cross-pollination)
11. exogenisis: symphony part 3 (redemption)
The last three tracks as you may or may not have guessed by the titles start out by being quite classical, the first starting with a string section (violins) and the second starting with a piano but after a while the drums and the vocals come in along with some synth, to create the distinctive sound of muse.
My favourite song on the album is probably uprising, as it was the first song that I heard it has kind of stuck with me, even though it uses less of the electronic sounds, it has a good tune, and lasts a while so you are constantly remeinded of the original tune that attracted yout o the song in the first place (personally that was my favourite bit of the whole song)
I can't say there was a worse song because I liked all of them to a certain degree, I have to say though, the last three, unless you listen to them though headphones, or really good speakers, they are not as good as the rest!
I would definately reccomend this album to anyone just needs to boost up their CD collection, thats what I did and I definately dont regret it!
Muse return with their latest offering and after the critical acclaim which their previous albums had received, I was full of expectations for this album to. What introduced me to this album was the excellent United States Of Eurasia, Eurasia of course will be familiar to anyone who has read 1984, the video is hard hitting and the song itself starts off slowly before breaking into crescendo of energy and emotion.
The excellence of this song is matched by the opener on the album Uprising, which is a message of strength, defiance and determination in the face of adversity. It has a terrific rhythm and matched by intelligent lyrics which actually say something. In fact anyone who has been following the career of Muse will have noted that they have been heading further in a political direction, by that I mean conveying their scorn for the system. With lyrics like "rise up and take the power back, it's time these fat cats had a heart attack".
This is followed by catchy song called Resistance and then by Undisclosed Desires which is quite a different direction for the band, is very mellow and the production would certainly not sound out of a place on an rnb song.
The next 2 songs pass by without too much spark, although they are listenable and this is followed by MK Ultra, an ominous dark sonic landscape sets the scene for this very listenable song. I absolutely can not stand I Belong To You, it sounds truly bland and wreaks of a fillter track and so I quickly switch it to the next track but at this point I am in for a real shock. I know I certainly was when I was greeted with an endless symphony for 3 tracks and just the sporadic crooning of a few words from the frontman!.
This struck was as either truly arrogant, or simply lazy. Whether some people will attempt to justify this as a terrific example of artistry or not, is up to them but this is not the band, this is a symphony and means we only 8 get real tracks from the album.
From those 8 tracks, about 3 are excellent, one is very bland, one is bordering on being unlistenable and the other 3 are a little more than average. When you take this into account, you are left with the horrible feeling of an ep being passed off as an lp. Would I buy this? no, I don't think anyone should purchase a half finished album
I've been to see Museseven times now and can categorically say that they are my favourite band of all time. With that in mind, I was both excited and apprehensive about their new album - "The Resistance" as we all know that bands always start to lose momentum at some point.
The album starts off with Uprising, which was released as one of the singles, and continues where the last album left off with lots of suggestions of conspiracy theories and the like played to a guitar/elctro rock backing. This is followed by the latest single, Resistance, which is a slower track to warm to but of the same sort of ilk. The third track, Undisclosed Desires, is not the sort of song you would historically associate with Muse and has an almost A-ha like 80's feel to it. Although as an old school fan I found that I shouldn't like it, its ended up being one fo my favourites and shows that the band are still prepared to try new things. United States of Eurasia was the first track released from the album before it came out. Its a heady track with pleanty of piano and more than a nod or two to Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody in its grandiose and pompous feel. Guiding Light is next up and is one of my least favourite tracks. It takes up where Invincible left off on the next album, a steady pop stadium rock kind of song that doesn't really do anything innovative, which is precisely what I do expect with Muse. After the disappointment of track 5, the next song, Unnatural Selection is life affirming and sees Muse back to their best. It starts off with a simple vocal with organ backing before kicking back in with an awesome rock riff - in my mind, the album's jewel. Track 7 is MK Ultra and is a suitably strong follow up to the previous song and a return to the space conspiracy theories that Muse have become associated with. Track 8 is I Belong To You and for me is the biggest disappointment on the album. Muse generally allow one poor track through on each album and this is it, a slow love song with Matt singing in French - wrong! Tracks 9-11 are Exogenesis Symphony in three parts and again are a bit of a disappointment. The tracks blend into one and feel like Muse have just been allowed a little too much rope to write whatever they want without any real quality control.
Overall, I can't slate Muse too much because they are doing something that no other band at the moment are and I applaud their invention. This album is good, but don't buy it thinking that there won't be some disappointment with it.
I am a massive fan of Muse especially the albums 'Origin of Symmetry' and 'absolution' this album is no exception to Muse's genius, although in a different way.
The songs in The Resistance seem more focused on love instead of Matt's usual sci-fi and political conspiracies. The album also appears to be more alternative/pop than alternative/rock, especially after Muse sang on the christmas edition of Top of The Pops! Unfortunately, many heavy rock loving Muse fans may be dissapointed in this album, even the best of its songs can't compare to the likes of 'Plug in Baby' from Origin of Symmetry.
Some of these songs are surprisingly quite emotional, most noticeably Resistance, I Belong to you and Guiding Light. As a girl, I do like this side to Muse and I think it will help open them up to a wider audience. My other personal favourites are Uprising and Undisclosed Desires, mainly because I love the lyrics to both of these and because they are both quirky, upbeat numbers. I have no idea how Matt (lead singer and song writer) is so versatile with his styles of music!
Although I am impressed with the majority of this album I am dissapointed with the three part, thirteen minute Exogenesis Symphony. It all seems a bit like Beethoven, although this is just my opinion as I really can't stand classical music. However, it has been given rave reviews by most for integrating contemporary classical music into what is usually alternative rock.
The track listings with some more info on each song:
Uprising- A fast paced, upbeat song with heavy pop influences and an intro suspiciously similar to the Doctor Who theme tune...
Resistance- One of my favourites, with beautiful, love song lyrics and an RnB beat. Sadly the first fourty seconds sound like quiet static before Matt's amazing piano skills kick in. This one's guranteed to leave you with 'it could be wrong, could be wrong, but it should've been right...' going around in your head.
Undisclosed Desires- Another very pop influenced song with a fast paced beat. Luckily however it does feature a very catchy chorus although sadly they've done something to Matt's great voice in this part. Surprisingly, this song doesn't include a single guitar riff! I know, a Muse song with no guitar riffs, what is the world coming to? In the video Matt is shown playing a keyboard that's on a guitar, very strange...
United States of Eurasia/ Collateral Damage- So I'm not a big fan of Queen, what a surprise then I'm not very keen on this song. In a very obvious homage to the group, Muse conclude with singing 'Eura-sia, Eura-sia!' in a very queen like way.
Guiding Light- I don't have much to say about this one, there's nothing wrong with it but neither is their anything special to say about it. It does however have a good storyline of love, once passionate, but now almost forgotten. One person of the couple is now lost in life with no 'Guiding light'
Unnatural Selection- Long term Muse fans might view this as a memory of previous work from Muse. As one of these people, I do like it because as with older Muse songs, I find the lyrics pretty much incomprehensible.
MK Ultra- So I have no idea about the title of this song, apparently it refers to a CIA mind control operation. This definetly reflects in the lyrics of lies and deception.
I Belong To You/Mon coeur s'ouvre à ta voix- This is the song the featured in the New Moon Soundtack. It's pretty emotional, has a slower beat and includes Matt singing in French! (Hmmm, I wonder if he actually speaks French...)
Exogenesis Symphonies- Although these three songs aren't my cup of tea I do appreciate them. All of the instrumentals are beautifully performed and the lyrics are very meaningful, they tell the story of humans on earth. In the first part there are few lyrics and they are barely audible. In the second part, Muse describe a futuristic, apocalyiptic world where we have sent astronauts to populate a planet in order to save humanity. In the final part it says how we must forgive oursleves and all of humanity so that we can start again.
Overall, a great album!
The Resistance is the 5th studio album by the internationally-adored alternative rock band Muse. Having only listened to the previous three albums a few times (and Showbiz, their first album, not at all!), this was the first Muse-related purchase I had made. I was really looking forward to the album, and it did not disappoint. Since it's release late last year, it has had mixed reviews, but overall, was generally received quite well. I myself thought it was a fantastic venture for the band.
However, I can't help but feel extremely resentful towards Muse. For an 'Alternative Rock' band, the music they produced for The Resistance is extremely out of the ordinary. And is...well, in my opinion, progressive. Muse have consistently denied being a progressive rock band - most likely because 'prog' has been perceived as quite a alien word in the past few decades, and...well, an alien genre too. Despite their constant denial, I feel that this album in particular has prog written all over it. As I defined in a previous review, 'Progressive rock' is deviating from the norm - the development and adapting of fundamental rock 'rules'. The Resistance is not a typical alternative rock album. Far from it, I might add.
Yet, the world continues to go crazy for Muse. I have rated the album 4/5 as, yes, it is a good album, but what Muse are clearly aiming for here does not match the quality of similar albums. The release of this album comes at a time when Progressive Rock is at a height it has not come across for many many years, what with the increased recognition of bands like Dream Theater, and Porcupine Tree's 'The Incident' entering the Top 40 album charts...and although it may just be a coincidence, prog rockers have picked up on The Resistance, and it could quite easily be labelled as 'prog'. Coincidence? Maybe so, maybe not. All I can say is that Progressive Rock has become increasingly more influential on rock musicians (look at bands like Avenged Sevenfold, Trivium etc....very heavily influenced!), and I doubt very much that Muse haven't indulged in the genre once or twice in the past few years...
Okay. The album itself. It opens with the song 'Uprising', which, in my opinion, is the worst track on the album. Whilst being one of the most commercial tracks of the 11 (and has been consequentially been released into the charts), it still manages to establish an aura of strangeness and obsurdity. Lead guitarist and singer, Matt Bellamy, plays a Black Kaoss Manson; an electric guitar with Korg synth parts inside it. I don't know a lot about it, but it certainly strikes me as a unique instrument to use, particularly for an alternative rock band. The song itself is quite long for single material, and, quite surprisingly, wasn't cut down at all when released. I feel that the anthemic nature of the song is slightly overdone...the chants, and most embarrassingly, the 'come on's. When played live, bassist Chris Wolstenholme adds the backing vocals, and seeing it on Jools Holland honestly made me cringe. The song seems to convey desperation in the vocal lines however, and I feel that this is a strong element of the song, and one of the only ones.
The following song, however, I feel the complete opposite about. It's the semi-title track 'Resistance'. There's something cool about playing with 'the', 'a', and nothing at all, I just can't put my finger on it exactly. The song opens with ambience, and enters with a somewhat Ibiza-style piano hook, which is continued through the verse, but builds up into a typically contrasting chorus, which is extremely powerful with the use of distorted guitar and a clear-cut vocal part. The desperate vocals first heard in 'Uprising' are reintroduced here, and fans will see similarities with previous works by Muse. When I showed the track to my girlfriend, she heard the chorus, and she said: 'That's Muse.' The song is full of emotion and great contrasts of strong music and evocative passages.
The next song is one of the strangest; 'Undisclosed Desires'. I didn't quite understand why, but my first thought was that it sounded slightly Hip-Hop. It opens with a plucked string section, which conveys a bouncing rhythm, and as more instruments are introduced (an electric drum kit, most prominently), as well as verse lyrics, you may find yourself really getting into the song. I really love the second half of the verse...Matt Bellamy's vocals are fantastic, especially on the line 'It's soothing'. The music itself is soothing, let alone the vocals - brilliant! The chorus isn't hugely contrasting, but the introduction of bass guitar (which is slapped octaves) and layers of vocals is quite striking. I really like the song however. It's interesting, and different, and...you won't hear the end of it...prog.
The fourth track is actually the first song I heard of the new album, which I heard on the radio a few months before release. And I loved it. Like the album itself however, it received mixed reviews. It's called 'United States of Eurasia (+ Collateral Damage)', and although I don't get the title exactly, the song itself is great. Very deliberate Queen influences are present throughout, until the final section, which completes the song with a very Musey piano passage. The whole song not only shows off some impressively-written music, but also shows off Bellamy's secondary (but equally awesome) musical talent - the piano. I love it!
Guiding Light is a track that I like, but not as much as others. It opens with a driving rhythm, and is directly followed by airy synths and vocals, and this is maintained throughout the track, whilst featuring passages of guitar chords and synth breakdowns. This is the fifth track on the album, and marks the end of the singles - the point where some will switch off, because they've heard the commercial. But I urge you not to do so. The song does not follow a verse-chorus structure, which is not typical, and, well everything about the song isn't typical. It features a great guitar solo and a blissful outro though, and finishes unfinished - an open chord, preparing you for the next song.
'Unnatural Selection' - not released as single, and deliberately, I think. The hidden gem of the album. It's in-your-face, it's kick-ass, and it's prog. Prog prog prog. The varying sections, the length of the song, the strange rhythms - the church organ intro for pete's sake! It doesn't usually relate to the public. However, this is 'Muse'. The world have gone crazy for Muse. So, whatever they release, they're going to listen to, and the majority will enjoy to some extent. But when I have mentioned the new album to people, many have said what a great track it is - and it just frustrates me! And this is where my cynicism and resentment surface. If you enjoy this track, get into Progressive Rock, where you fill find a quarry of gems like this, because however great this track is, it does not match the quality of other Progressive songs.
The next song is 'MK Ultra', and opens again with synth, followed by driving bass and drum rhythms. I'm not overly keen on the song, but it is a nice little addition to the album. A very evocative song, again. The consistent synth creates an epic aura that is quite indescribable (well, this is a statement that can be used for a lot of the album, particularly after the first four tracks). There is a string break in the middle of the song which reminds me of a Brosnan-Bond song, talk about strange! The song is quite good though.
'I belong to you (+ Mon Coeur S'Ouvre A Ta Voix)', a song that featured on the Twilight Saga New Moon OST (after 'Supermassive Black Hole' was such a hit in the baseball scene on the original film). It's again, very adventurous and different, and again, exactly what defines prog. Yes, there are much proggier (invented words - I'm full of them!) songs around, but for a mainstream band like Muse, this is progressive. Muse are always looking ahead, to separate them from the rest. It opens with a bouncy piano rhythm, features Bellamy hitting some sky-high notes accompanied by some a mysteriously relaxing piano part (the latter part of the title track comes from an aria called Samson and Delilah, and translates exactly to 'My heart opens to your voice'). After string passage, the song breaks down and features a Bass clarinet solo, if the album couldn't get any more outrageous. Fantastic stuff Muse.
The final three songs on the album are collectively known as 'Exogenesis: Symphony'. When I looked at the titles on the back of the album cover, my initial thoughts were 'basic stuff Muse'. Basic prog, in other words. Muse finalise their album with another desperate attempt to isolate themselves, and I just don't know how to take it. Firstly, a symphony, by definition, is a piece of music written for orchestra, and overture, is a introduction to ideas and themes for the "symphony"...which 'Part 1 (Overture)', is not. But that aside, the music is quite soothing, particularly 'Part 3 (Redemption)'. It consists of mainly piano and vocals, but with strings included too, and is beautiful. I truly enjoy it a lot, and the emotions it conveys is moving. I'm not saying that the other two parts aren't evocative themselves, but I really love Part 3.
Muse simply could not have done much to separate themselves from the mainstream, whilst still being adored by their fans. In my opinion, they are the bridge between pop and prog, and it is very frustrating that they continue to deny their genre, when they are quite clearly 'progressing'. 'Prog' is becoming less of a 'dirty word' (as it has been described in the past), and I feel that Muse need to embrace it. Progressive Rock will never be fully accepted by the public, but I feel that Muse are key in the new wave of prog that we are experiencing. Whether they accept it or not, this album is very important in prog. I thoroughly enjoyed the album, and although I have a few nags with it, I would strongly recommend that you buy it.
One of the best albums I have herd of 2009. I enjoyed the fact that it is real music, a band with musical instruments and a singer, a thing which is hard to find these days.
One of the songs-I belong to you made its way into the hit film the twilight saga new moon, as well having another muse song in the first film which is not on the soundtrack. As well as having their songs in some films, they have had a few hits with this album especially 'Undisclosed Desires' which has been in the charts for some time now, well into 2010.
Some of the songs however aren't really what I would reveal as a muse song, for example Exogenesis Symphony Part 1, 2 and 3. They are all roughly four minutes long, but are mainly instrumental, with hardly any singing; I suppose it something different to add the culture of music that has been generated these days.
It is a brilliant album with some great chart topping singles. The art work on the cover like all muse albums is unique and inspirational, you can always tell it out of the crowd, I hope they go on to produce many more great albums., and continue to do as well as they have.
To be honest, I'd rather resist it. Muse have been a great group with some truly amazing songs under their belts, some of the tracks Muse have come up with over the years have been stunning.. So why is it that they have now started producing radio muzak.
With this album, the quality of their music seems to have declined a bit too much. Even though I would say that BHAR was a radio 1 friendly album, it was much better than this. I have always been a Muse fan and was excited that this album might move back to OoS style music, but it really seems to have gone the other way.
The whole album is a mixture of radio friendly music and music that has taken creativity a step too far. Uprising was interesting when I first heard it, but I didn't feel it was very them, so I found it hard to get into.
Resistance, Guiding Light, I belong to you and Exogenesis were all songs that I immediately skipped, after I had heard the 30 second previews. I found that there were no amazing guitar riffs such as the riff from dead star, which is amongst my favourite songs of theirs.
The only song that had a bit of guitar, had too much added on to it's ending. I disliked Undisclosed Desires as soon as i heard it and from that point felt the album would not be worth getting that next week. However, I must admit, it was very good live, so all credit to Muse as a live act that they could pull that off.
I would recommend this for anyone who listens to the radio, which is full of radio type music, but any Muse fans who love their music, won't want to torture their ears much with this. Muse, you can and do so very often do so much better than this. Come on guys, try a bit harder and all will be forgiven.
I was very reticent when I got this album. Having not heard much of Muse before, and not really liking some of what I had heard, I got this and wondered whether I'd like it or not.
I soon found out it was better than I had expected. I heard Resistance on Radio 1 on a Muse Night, and also one of the Exogenesis Symphony. I found the latter haunting, and as I am also interested in the visual side of music, also started having ideas for a music video, which for me lets me know that I like something.
When I listened to the album, I had an opinion on each of the songs, so I'll highlight my favourites off the album:
1. Uprising: This is my favourite song off of the album. The song has a good melody to it, and after listening to it a few times, the lyrics make a bit more sense to me. They also go nicely into the next song
2. Resistance: This song is the perfect partner to Uprising, as it carries the same sort of theme throughout it, about resistance and going against the norm, which Muse definitely did with this song.
4. United States of Eurasia: This is more of a electro rock mix, similar to Queen and We Will Rock You/Radio Ga Ga. It's very light and symphonic and is also quite anthemic.
I do enjoy the whole album but I can't think of the words I want to say about it!
Muse fans can be divided into 2 categories. Old Muse or New Muse.
Older fans seem to worship at the feet of Absolution & Origin of Symmetry, whereas most newer fans became so after hearing Black Holes & Revelations.
In my opinion 'The Resistance' is like Marmite. Now it isn't 100% true but I think most pre Black Holes Muse fans will hate it. It is very different from their first 2 albums.
Musical reviews are very difficult and are only that one persons opinion and we all differ so here is my take on the album:
'Uprising' is a solid if repetitive glam rock style opener with a mix of Dr Who & Blondie thrown in. Seems to be getting a lot of airplay but is only average. 'Resistance' the title track is a cracker, beautifully sung and is my 3rd favourite track.
'Undisclosed Desires' is the marmite track of a marmite album! Very Depeche Mode - not really my thing. ' United States of Eurasia' is very 'Queen' and I cringe at certain parts of the track.
'Guiding Light' and 'I Belong to You' are perhaps amongst the worst tracks Muse have ever written. Think bad 80's stadium rock with bad mullets. Yes that bad.
I can take or leave the closing 3 symphonies - they are beautifully sung & performed but not really my thing and they do not seem to flow together as much as I had hoped.
Which leaves us with the best tracks for me on the album. 'MK Ultra' and 'Unnatural Selection' Perhaps it is the rocker in me but the 2 hardest rocking songs are also the best. Unnatural Selection is 7 minutes long and contains everything good about Muse. Slow build up, rocking riffs & great vocals climaxing in an almost metal sounding ending. MK Ultras lyrics are fantastic, just google the story behind the tracks title and prepare to be shocked.
In summary a slightly dissapointing effort from the boys saved by the genius that is MK Ultra, Unnatural Selection & the beautiful 'Resistance'
Disc #1 Tracklisting
3 Undisclosed Desires
4 United States Of Eurasia [+Collateral Damage]
5 Guiding Light
6 Unnatural Selection
7 MK Ultra
8 I Belong To You [+Mon Coeur S'Ouvre A Ta Voix]
9 Exogenesis: Symphony Part 1 [Overture]
10 Exogenesis: Symphony Part 2 [Cross-pollination]
11 Exogenesis: Symphony Part 3 [Redemption]