Following from yesterday's NME interview with Muse, we've put together a track-by-track summary of the album to give you a better idea of what to expect on each track, as well as some slightly tongue-in-cheek commentary from yours truly at MuseLive.com.
NME SAYS: 'Supremacy' sees the band going to "absurd levels", according to Matt. Spiralling swamp blues of the track builds to a climax of orchestral hysteria as Matt orates a terrifying scene of mankind losing its supremacy over the Earth as "the seas have risen up" and energy shortages cause global desperation.
MUSELIVE SAYS: Sounds understated. There's probably scope for Muse to do an acoustic rendition of this on Radio 1's Live Lounge.
NME SAYS: The next single (released early August). An electronic cross between 'I Want To Break Free' and 'Faith'. "You've had a fight with your girlfriend and she goes off to her mum's house for the day and you're on your own going: "What did I say?"" says Matt, describing the song's inspiration. "I'm sure a lot of blokes have that experience in the early stages of relationships where you go: "Yeah, she's right, isn't she?".
MUSELIVE SAYS: No, we're not sure what to make of any of this either.
NME SAYS: According to Matt, in the Radio 1 interview after 'Survival', this track features brass. Muse have cited Prince as the inspiration for the 80's effects on the track. The song is describes as having a "hysteric" feel, which is reflected in demented 80's elements such as backwards 'Let's Dance' drumbeats and riffs reminiscent of INXS' 'Suicide Blonde'. More gasping vocally from Matt. "That's 'Scary Monsters' Bowie meets Primus", says Matt. "Doing a funk track was for us remembering Rush and Primus, the more slap-bass things we liked." "Those big, spacious, wet, massive drum sounds," adds Dom. "It started to conjure up memories of songs we'd listened to or grew up on in the 80's by Prince and Stevie Wonder and we wanted to take it in that direction."
MUSELIVE SAYS: Does anyone know if this song features any eighties influences? Let us know!
You know this one.
NME SAYS: "If [the fans] hate it, cool", says Dom. "At least it's provoking something. It's a pretty weird song for the Olympics to choose, but it's cool that they think the song can represent the enormity of the Olympics. It takes you back to Gladiator-style Olympics. Maybe they should bring some of those back, like fending off a tiger with a spiked metal ball."
MUSELIVE SAYS: Watch your back, Sebastian Coe. A last minute addition for London 2012 maybe?
NME SAYS: The beginning of the track features Bingham Bellamy's heartbeat. An ode to fatherhood, by Matt.
MUSELIVE SAYS: We're not convinced this is going to become a classic Muse song just yet.
NME SAYS: Flamenco-flecked. 'Animals' is about economies collapsing under the weight of stock market savagery, of industries desperate to "advertise, franchise… kill the competition", and of the greed of bankers who Matt claims should "kill yourself, come on and do us all a favour". Matt says: "This song is conjuring up the rawest form of that feeling of "look what humans are capable of doing, it's shocking.'"
MUSELIVE SAYS: Humans are capable of doing far worse, Matt. Case in point.
NME SAYS: An elegant, choral pop vision of dying crops and abused nature, inspired by Matt's concerns of industrial greed and business monopolies. 'Explorers' is drenched in the sense of not feeling you belong on your own planet. Very nearly called 'Alien Explorers', Matt claimed, but "not in the way of aliens from outer space but in the way of feeling like an alien on your own planet. It's about the intense desire to grow and expand - at some point nature will become the minority. I'm not sure if I'm really coming from an environmental thing - [Explorers] is where I'm singing about my views on property rights. The idea that corporations can own vast tracts of foreign countries. I'm not sure if the deal went through but, I think it was in Paraguay or Uraguay, the Bush family bought something like a million acres of land, which underneath contains the biggest natural water reservoir in South America. At some point there has to be someone who says: 'That's not right.'. Can BP buy Nigeria? At the moment they can. They could buy it and they kick all the natives out, shoot them down or whatever and just say: "We own this now"."
MUSELIVE SAYS: So, it's about nature, but not really, and Matt's views on the relationship between the rich and powerful and land ownership? It will probably sound better than it does here.
NME SAYS: Stadium Stomp.
MUSELIVE SAYS: It would be unfair to not perform this in the majestic environment it was designed for, wouldn't it? Another stadium tour please.
NME SAYS: Written by Chris. The song details his battle with alcoholism, and was written at a time when he was sober. "It's about having the family, wife and kids who, despite all the c--p I've put them through, at the end of it you realise they're still there and they're the ones who pulled you through," says Chris.
MUSELIVE SAYS: The first time (that we can recall) where someone other than Matt has written a song for the album. We're hoping for some 'City of Delusion'-esque bass solos on here.
NME SAYS: The second track on the record written by Chris, and again written about his alcohol addiction. "This one was written about the person you become when you're intoxicated and how the two of them are having this fight inside of you and it tears you apart," he adds.
MUSELIVE SAYS: See above.
The 2nd Law: Unsustainable / The 2nd Law: Isolated System
NME SAYS: Doom-drenched operas full of newsreel reports from the end of civilisation, rapping Terminators, trumpets inflating like lifeboats and Exorcist piano pulses tinkling goodbye to the globe. "It's the noise of humanity on a tiny planet in the middle of nothing," says Matt. "Hanging around space would be so peaceful and quiet and suddenly you come to this little blip that's f-----g chaos! I see it as drifting away from the planet and going into the peacefulness of what actually is gonna happen at the end of it all, which is nothingness."
MUSELIVE SAYS: Not unfair to assume this is Exogenesis parts four and five. Probably features some dubstep. Brace youselves.