The Knights of Cydonia

The DC area got a visit from MUSE on Thursday night and I just happened to be there – lol.

I’ve been following MUSE for many years and have caught them live about seven times before Thursday’s show at the Patriot Center. While I’m not the biggest fan of their latest album, the rest of their discography absolutely blows me away and it was awesome to see this band I love finally filling an arena as they properly deserve too.

If the “Absolution” tour was the pinnacle of MUSE performing musically then this current tour is the first full realization of their showmanship. While the setlist wasn’t as tight in the past, nor the renditions of some of their older tunes, the stage show and theatrics that accompanied the new material was like the second coming of Ziggy Stardust. It was obvious from the get go that MUSE have crafted the live show of their dreams now that they have the resources of an American fanbase behind them. The stage was decked out in space station chic, three massive monitors pumping out awesome visuals, a stellar light-show, the largest choreographed steam cannons I’ve ever seen, and of course the trademark gigantic confetti blob monsters bouncing over the crowd. The visual show was matched by Bellamy’s near-operatic vocals and unique power-pop persona. The music was pure power with the drums and bass rivalling Bellamy’s virtuoso guitar playing to create a rafter shaking racket.

The moment that it all really came together for me as a career-long MUSE fan though was a simple one. For years and years I’ve watched Bellamy play with his trusty shiny, silver guitar. He’s been dragging that thing all over the world forever and it looks like it’s seen better days beause of it. But during last night’s show, the largest scale MUSE show I’ve seen yet, he used the silver guitar to awesome effect. It was right after the steam cannons erupted for the first time when Bellamy comes wading through the fog shooting a huge beam of light from his chest. Of course it was a powerful spotlight beamed directly at his trusty reflective guitar and it sent a ray of light out over the crowd that was pure pop magic. It was an awesome MUSE geek moment that evoked a huge grin from me matched only by Bellamy’s own as the power-pop master realized his arena stage performance dreams.

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