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Friday, February 29, 2008

The Top 5 Muse Songs

From time to time I'll just be completely lost as to what to make my biweekly Top 5 list about. When such a thing occurs, I typically just pick a random artist and then list their top 5 songs. Sounds simple right? It is! That's why today I've decided to list the Top 5 Muse Songs. Enjoy.

#5: "Shine Acoustic" from the album, Hullabaloo Soundtrack - Muse has always been a band with fantastic range. They are able to rock out amongst the best of them, and still make some of the best ballads in modern rock; sometimes in the same song! "Shine Acoustic" is one of the band's better ballads and was featured on the live/compilation album Hullabaloo Soundtrack. Matt's voice croons in a piercing falsetto over some frantically-played acoustic guitars and organ synths, pleading, "Please don't break my idea!" There's a little bit of moodiness in there as well, as the sound of thunder and raindrops can be heard throughout. It's a rarely-heard song, but it is one of their best.

#4: "Butterflies and Hurricanes" from the album, Absolution - Absolution is definitely my favorite Muse album, and one of the best albums in recent memory. This song is my favorite "heavy" song on the album. Matt sings, "Best, you've got to be the best. You've got to change the world and use this chance to be heard. Your time is now," while piano keys are forcefully clanked down, a mini-orchestra flutters in the background, and drums and guitars are absolutely chaotic! Halfway through, the song winds down and what sounds like a well-composed reprise is actually just an interlude. Before you have time to take it all in, the band is once again rocking out at full force. I love this song because it's so different and it's always changing. I'm sure you will too.

#3: "New Born" from the album, The Origin of Symmetry - I always knew that "New Born" was a great song, but it wasn't until I saw it paired with the French horror film, "High Tension," that I realized just how awesome it could be. The song comes in during a scene in which the victim suddenly decided to turn things around and become the hunter, and the usage of this song is highly effective. Like a lot of Muse songs (too many, in fact) it begins with a piano arpeggio before tearing that same arpeggio a new one with the unruly might of pure rock! As far as Matt's vocals go, I don't think they've ever sounded better than they do on this one. Everything is perfectly played and executed, and at 6 minutes long, you'll be well-entertained throughout.

#2: "Blackout" from the album, Absolution - It took me a while before I figured out how great of a song "Blackout" really was. As one of the few ballads on Absolution, it sometimes felt out of place or weird. But after a year or two, it finally dawned on my how beautiful this song really is. It tells of a love that "is too good to last," and as Matt poignantly adds "I'm too young to care." By the time the last verse rolls around he's crying it at the top of his lungs over brooding strings and a steady jazz kit. It truly is a heartbreaking song, and undoubtedly on of their best! I also featured it on my Top 20 Songs About Love list a few months back. You know, in case you're interested.

#1: "Citizen Erased" from the album, The Origin of Symmetry - For some strange reason, Muse has always been compared to Radiohead. I can't possibly imagine why. Their style of music is entirely different, and while Thom and Matt share similar vocal qualities, they're often utilized in different ways. However, I have always found myself comparing "Citizen Erased," my favorite Muse song, to "Paranoid Android," my favorite song. They don't really sound all that similar, but each song takes the listener on a journey, and when it ends, you find yourself wanting to experience all over again! It's my favorite for that reason, and also because it goes from balladry to rock-goddotry effortlessly and quite amazingly! I've probably listened to this one hundreds of times in my lifetime, and I still love every single moment of it.

Below is a playlist containing all 5 of these songs. And for those wondering why I left out two of their albums, well, I just didn't like the songs as much. Makes sense right?


Anonymous said...

Dude, Citizen Erased is like the sweetes song ever. I don't know why i like it so much. I wish you would have put the whole track on the site though.

Cale said...

Ugh. iMeem does this thing where a song will be full on the site, but when you export it it's only a clip. That's a pretty poor clip of Citizen Erased, so I'll see if I can get a full version up.