Muse, one of the biggest bands in the world, in a small, intimate venue playing new and old material to hardcore fans – what could possibly be better?
Many fellow ‘Musers’ turned up early for the final date in their intimate six-gig UK tour, with some hardcore fans even camping over night in a bid to be right at the front when doors opened at 7pm. When doors did open, the crowd were welcomed with the voice of singer Matt Bellamy, speaking to BBC Radio 1 (being streamed live in the Dome) about their first single from their 7th Album Drones.
Support act Marmozets, fronted by Becca Macintyre , had the already beyond excited crowd at their feet – with mosh pits a plenty and a genuine appreciation of the five-piece band, made up of two sets of siblings, from West Yorkshire. ‘Why Do You Hate Me’ went down the best with the crowd, with Macintyre’s vocals strong enough to keep up with the brilliant band behind her.
After possibly the best gig interval music I’ve heard in a while (an assortment of Led Zeppelin classics), the sound of ‘Psycho’ reverberated around the 1700 capacity venue. That irrepressible riff from Muse’s teaser song from album Drones rocked the crowd, inducing mass fist pumping and bouncing.
‘Psycho’ wasn’t the only new song played by the Teignmouth-raised trio, with the heavy ‘Reapers’ sounding incredible and arguably had one of the biggest crowd reactions. After only being released to the world two hours before they came on stage, Muse played ‘Dead Inside’ for the first time live with a mixed crowd reaction, probably due to only just being released!
The 15 song setlist was littered with Muse classics, including Starlight, Supermassive Black Hole, Uprising, Time Is Running Out – the list goes on and on. One of the many highlights was Hysteria, personally the best live performance of a song I’ve ever seen (beating LSF, Kasabian) with main lyric “I want you now” and Chris Wolstenholme’s bass playing probably being heard around most of a chilly Brighton. This led into another from arguably their best album Absolution – ‘Stockholm Syndrome’ creating more mosh pits.
Their set also included a few old songs that, while less widely known, had a place in most Muse fans’ hearts – the encore started with ‘Uno’ (from Showbiz, released in 1999), their first ever single. ‘Plug In Baby’, one of their most famous songs (and one of the easiest of all time to air guitar to), followed next with Bellamy’s eccentric vocals once again coming to the fray, along with drummer Dom Howard almost smashing up his well-worked drum kit to the audience’s delight. After giving their thanks to all the fans who had turned up for this impromptu tour and stuck by them over the years, bassist Wolstenholme was handed his customary Harmonica for the finale. ‘Man With A Harmonica’ led into the timeless ‘Knights of Cydonia’, which threatened to blow the 200 year-old dome off the Brighton venue – a fitting end to such a memorable event.
Muse once again showed why they are considered to be one of the best live bands around, with a superb performance with a perfect blend of new and old songs satisfying the entire crowd. An absolute privilege to have been there.