Muse’s new album experiments with different sounds in each song.
Alternative rock band Muse released its seventh album, “Simulation Theory”, Nov. 9th, 2018, with different stylistic twists in every song.
Photo Credit: Muse
A powerful introduction to the album begins with “Algorithm”, which brings Muse’s instrumental upbringing to light through an orchestra with a dark twist that is authentically classical. There is not much singing compared to the other songs, but when frontman Matthew Bellamy does sing, his voice – unmistakably his – brings that familiar screaming sound Muse is known for, hinting at what is to come throughout the entire album.
Another signature Muse sound in “The Dark Side” starts at once after a tap of drumsticks by drummer Dominic Howard. This song has more singing, with the chorus starting early. It introduces that techno twist Muse has seemingly strived for this album in an effort to sound modern. The instruments in the band shine through with a guitar solo included.
UCLA band replaces the orchestra for “Pressure”. Bellamy’s voice matches the timing of the band, creating a staccato twist as they are in sync with a slight pause. A very catchy tune, the guitar played by Bellamy shines throughout the chorus.
“Propaganda” brings in a deep voice, very unsettling in the very first seconds and when it repeats, but this is forgiven with the rest of the song. It is very well written, but the deep voice ruins it, as the Prince-like twist of the voice backfires into something worth skipping- not the entire song, just the part with the non-human voice.
“Break it to me” starts out rock with an authentically Egyptian twist; quite flattering with Bellamy’s voice, but also seems very out-of-place for a rock band. With the bridge an alien sound that continues to the end, it portrays the intended theme of supernatural simulation.
“Something Human” is completely unlike any of the other songs, being the most upbeat of all. It brings a humanistic aspect to the album due to use of acoustics instead of the usual techno taste.
“Thought Contagion” was a single released long before the album was. Christopher Wolstenholme’s bass-playing talent is very apparent in this.
“Get Up and Fight” is a modern alternative with a terrible high voice echo throughout the whole song. Bellamy’s voice tries to sugarcoat it, but it still makes the sound bittersweet.
“Blockades” is a very progressive twist with Bellamy saying one thing and the backup repeating it back.
“Dig Down” is another one released way before the album. In this song, synthesizers are once again crazy, making this the most Muse-like out of all the songs in this album. The same beat throughout the entire song brings a blended feel with Bellamy holding a note at the end so perfectly.
“The Void” is the most meaningful song on this album. Bellamy sings about how it is thought that the sun is dying and the fragile will die and the cold will make cold souls. The chorus is nonexistent except for the bridge that is very progressive, the potential of the song building up every time he says they are wrong about humanity.
The major twists throughout this lovely album are both positive and negative at times, earning “Simulation Theory” three out of five stars.