Saturday, March 6, 2010

SHOW REVIEW: MUSE LIVE @ Madison Square Garden in NYC 3/5/10

Last night, I was fortunate enough to see Muse at Madison Square Garden in NYC. You probably heard many different blogs/music magazines deem Muse as the best live band in the world, and you cannot possibly comprehend this until you go to see them. To make the night that much better, Silversun Pickups were the opening band. The crowd was pretty not interested during their set, but I thought they held their own. Chris Guanlao, the drummer, and Nikki Monniger, the bassist, are absolutely amazing at what they do. Chris is a monster, and offered endless entertainment through his flailing. Nikki seemed more inhibited, but she’s one of the best bassists I’ve ever seen. All and all, they were great. They played quite a few songs, and it’s a shame I only recognized “Substitution”, “Panic Switch”, and their closer “Lazy Eye”. They made it very clear to us how happy they were to be there, and you felt their joy when singer Brian Aubert did a little happy dance. Now given that this was a WRXP sponsored event, Matt Pinfield, one of the DJs, came on to introduce Muse−that made everything suddenly real. The lights dimmed, the towers lit up showing an image of a person walking up to the top (and then falling off ala Absolution), and suddenly the shades dropped and there Matt, Dom, and Chris were. They immediately plowed through “Uprising”. I really don’t like “Uprising”, but it was performed so grandiosely that everyone was screaming their heads off, and it made me like it, if not just for those 5 minutes. After “Resistance”, they did an extremely epic two song run of “New Born” and “Map of the Problematique”. What more could you ask for? Matt Bellamy is a guitar god, and the “New Born” solo proved it. Dom Howard is a complete virtuoso on the drums, and his insane skills were the utter highlight of “Map of the Problematique”. “Guiding Light” was one of the best performances. The overall sound is that of what you’d imagine hearing in a huge football stadium, and hearing it at MSG was one of the most emotionally epic moments of my life. Afterwards, it sounded like they were just messing with the guitar, and when I realized it was infact “Interlude” I flipped. Chris Wolstenholme is sheer genius when it comes to “Hysteria”, and the audience seemed to agree. Even though the rest of the concert was beyond-words unbelievable, in my mind, “Plug in Baby” had to be the best part of the night. When the air-raid sounding static-y guitar began and he launched into the opening riff, I freaked. The massive energy that poured from the stage and Matt’s endless hops and twirls were just perfect. If they ended it there, I still would’ve been out-of-control happy and satisfied. For the encore, they did “Exogenesis (Overture)”, which was severely entertaining because I’ve never seen or imagined so many people jumping around/head banging to bombastic strings. They finished with “Stockholm Syndrome” and “Knights of Cydonia”-both intensely and perfectly performed, and the best possible ending to such a brilliant night.

I was deeply moved by their performance and very sad that it had to end. For the first time, I have no complaints about a concert. They did everything spot on; they had a very full setlist, doing both “MK Ultra” and “Unnatural Selection”, and they performed with everything they had. It’s been awhile since I had this much fun at a concert, and if you want your mind completely blown, I would suggest doing everything in your capacity to go see them. They are the best live band in the world today.

New Born
Map of the Problematique
Supermassive Blackhole
Guiding Light
United States of Eurasia
Feeling Good
Helsinki Jam
Undisclosed Desires
MK Ultra
Plug in Baby
Time is Running Out
Unnatural Selection

Exogenesis: Symphony, Pt. 1: Overture
Stockholm Syndrome
Man With Harmonica+Knights of Cydonia

NOTE: Okay, so I got the pictures from here from these people. I didn't have a camera with me, but if these pictures belong to you and/or you a have a problem with me having them here, just drop a comment, and I'll get rid of them. I hope you enjoy reading my review as much as I enjoyed being there. My ears are still ringing, but that just makes me remember how amazing it was.


Anonymous said...

"man with harmonica" is the bassist, Chris. Nice job, music critic.

Anonymous said...

I was there and it was awesome! For me, hearing Stockholm Syndrome alone was worth the price of admission. They are truly incredible live and play every note with meticulous precision. That is probably the secret to their live success...

Anonymous said...

Awesome review! They played Time is Running Out also.

Double Hawk said...

Anonymous#1: Thank you! Yeah, I know that his name is Chris Wolstenholme, but everything I read has referred to the harmonica thing as "Man with Harmonica".

Anonymous#2: It really was and I completely agree! Stockholm Syndrome was great, that's my personal favorite song, but my favorite performance had to be Plug in Baby-the whole concert was too amazingly epic. I like how they don't just make it sound like the album-they add onto what they did on the album.

Anonymous#3: Thank you! And wow, that's embarrassing. I wrote the setlist down on paper, but I awkwardly forgot to type it when I transferred. Thanks for noticing that!

Lily Hydrangea said...

I like the lead singers voice.

Double Hawk said...

LH: Me too!