Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Muse: Black Holes and Revelations

I just picked up my first Muse album, based on a few songs I'd heard. So far I'm really digging it. I appreciate the keyboard/synth element. It adds a lot to the songs, especially the opening track. It reminds me of The Who's synth elements.

I'm pretty sure I have listened to an entire Muse album before (I don't remember which one it was, but it was a few years ago) and I remember dismissing them at the time because of the lead singer's style. The drawn out vibratto whine (which seems to be a trendy thing these last few years) was really annoying. I'm pleased to say it doesn't bother me on Black Holes very much. We'll see if it can stand the test of time.

I had also picked up and then got rid of Wolfmother recently. Same deal as Muse: singer grates. Some of the songs are great, but the vocals compete so much with the (very nice) instrumentals I just couldn't take it.


jeri said...

You probably heard Absolution. The singer does whine a little more on that album, but I actually prefer it in the long run. I like their use of piano in Absolution, and the songs have more re-playability for me. But I like BH&R too.

Ryan said...

Thanks, Jeri. I'll check out Absolution.

Nobody said...

It's been almost six months since I picked up BH&R and it's still one of my most listened to CDs. I often put it on my earphones at night to trance me into sleep.

Absolution is good too, with some memorable singles played a lot at clubs, but I agree with Ryan that one of BH&R's virtues is that Matt Bellamy sounds less like Thom Yorke than on previous albums, and even though the songs feel part of a whole, they still represent a good variety of styles:

"Map of the Problematique" (my favorite track of the moment) could be a U2 song from Achtung Baby, "Soldier's Poem" could be a Freddie Mercury ballad, and the hymn-like "Invincible" is so fantastic I wish we sung it at church (perhaps with altered lyrics).

And those are just three in the middle of the album! The final trilogy of songs are the most satisfying three tracks to close an album since (here I go again) Achtung Baby.

It took me a while to digest the tracks individually since they sound so good together, but I think you'll find it's an album that improves with age.