UK (Manchester), November 10, 2006
unregistered, on november 13, 2006 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: As everybody knows, Matt Bellmay's voice is awesome. And he sounds absoultely 100% perfect live too. You'd have thought you were listening to the recording on pretty much all the songs. Chris' bass playing was as smooth and heavy as ever, and Dom's drumming was phenomenal. Even assasin and stockholm syndrome were played flawlessly. Throught the set, there was quite a bit of pre-recorded material (songs like Bliss, Knights of Cydonia and Take a bow) but it didn't take anything away from the actual Live playing. The sound quality was very very high standard. When the band went rlly loud, they didn't lose any quality or clearness in the playing. The drums, bass and guitar were all perfectly levelled, and Matts voice was strong enough to carry over the rest of the music. Every now and then, Matts guitar playing or voice would deviate SLIGHTLY from the recordings, but only to add that little 'Live' touch that every gig needs (little guitar licks throughout Supermassive Black hole etc). // 10
Perfomance: For a three piece band on such a large stage, Matt, Dom and Chris put on one hell of a show. They didn't go OTT at any point, no pintless jumping etc. They just let their emotion come through in their perfromance. Songs like Knights of Cydonia where Matt stood at the front of the stage with one arm in the air shouting "no-ones gonna take me alive" were very powerful. During take a bow, Matt actually took a bow and small actions like these really pleased the crowd. Here is the set list from the gig with a couple of comments bout the songs:
01. Take A Bow - a perfect opener to the gig, built up from the electro-synth Darkness to the stadium filling cry of "You will burn in hell for your sins". Very powerful and got vuilt the crowd up for the gig.
02. Hysteria - straight into this song from take a bow with no gap, as soon as the crowd realised what Chris was aplaying on Bass, they went crazy. Very strong, but the bass could've been a little louder, I spose it's very difficult to replicate the heavy effect he has on the recording. Still very good and one that all the crowd knew.
03. Butterflies And Hurricanes - this is a song that I sometimes forget Musae have, but I really enjoyed it Live. I really liked the fact that they played the heavy riff in the middle of the song 8 times rather than just 2. Really amazing piano work from Matt too, just helped me to realise even more how much of a God he is.
04. Assasin - I have always liked 'assasin' but I never really enjoyed it until the gig. They played it absolutely brilliantly, and it's already such a heavy song that when it's played so loud it's just immense. I think that this song is Muse's NEW equivalent of stockholm syndrome and citizen erased, a really heavy destroyer. Drums on this song were just wow.
05. Plug In Baby - I was really surprised they played this song so early. But I think it was genius that they did, because the whole crowd sat up and took notice. Even the 30-40 year olds sat behind me and my mate that were moanming about us standing up stood up, the whole crowd jusr erupted. I was impressed by Matts weird effects at the start of the song, just like the recording- where he stoff next to the amp for about 5 minutes getting crazy feeback.
06. Map Of The Problematique - this is one of my favourite songs off the new album, and it is such an epic song that it really did fill the whole arena. it's just so epic and immense, and I enjoyed singing along to "why can't w see that when we bleed we bleed the same". Brilliant.
07. Muscle Museum - just before this song, Matt said "This is to anybody Who remembers our first album, cos I don't" which made me laugh. I think this is the best song off the showbiz album and I was glad that they hadnt completely forgotten their roots. Made me wanna listen to showbiz again, which I hadnt done foir a while.
08. Forced In - I could tell that hardly any of the people around me and my mate had heard this B-side, but it was good that they played a much less well known song to keep the die-hardcore fans happy. Even thoughit got a little bit boring after a while, it was still played really well, and the lights went all dark and mysterious which was a cool touch.
09. Bliss - one of my very favourite Muse songs, so when I heard Matt play the notes on guitar, I almost fell off the upper tier with delight. Abosolutely amazing, basically. The stomping riff and HUGE chorus were prefect. I was also made up when the outro to the song after the last chorus didn't fade straight away, but played the heavy riff for about 8 bars. This just made the song even better. Absolutely brilliant song but even better live.
10. Feeling Good - played really well, but I just don't like this song all that much, so I didn't enjoy it as much as other songs. Also, I think Matt's megaphone broke just as he was about to use it, becasue I couldn't hear the first few lines of the second verse which he usually sings through a megaphone, and then he just sang straight into the mic. Still really good though.
11. Hoodoo - Matt played all of this on piano with no guitar, and it was a good little filler between songs. Obviously not meant to be a crowd favourite, but kept me fired up for the next songs.
12. Invincible - I think that this song is great on it's own, but when it's played infront of 2, 000 fans singing "tongith we can turly say, together we're invincible" it becomes fantastic. Built up slowly, but ended loud and epic. Not as good as some of the other songs played on the night, but I remembered how good the song actually is from seeing it live.
13. Supermassive Black Hole - the whole crowd just went wild as soon as the first few nots of this dark disco-esque song were played. Everybody stood up and most of the girls around me were dancing, and some of the guys. I really got into it cos it's just such a groovy song, great bassline and generally sexy vocals. The video that was played throughout the song in the background was absolutely birllaint-just bright disco colours with robots that danced in time with the song. I think that that video should have been the video for the single, and it really lifeted the song. Excellent.
14. Time Is Running Out - another crowd favourite, I really enjoyed this song a lot more than I have done before the gig. Another sexy bassline, and a fantastic chorus that everybody sung along to. Really great performance form Matt too Who spent much of the song on his knees and his back.
15. Stockholm Syndrome - my very very favourite Muse song, and the heaviest of the set in my opinion. I can't describe how good it was. It was technically perfect, everything from the high pitched guitar harmonics half-way through the song to the pounding drums. I spent the whole first verse singing along, and then when the heavy-as-hell pre-chorus kicked in, I just went for it (headbanging galore). Most of the crowd really got into the chorus too, singing "this is the alst time I'll forget you- I wish I could". The outro was awesome. I love the outro as it is, but played Live it sounded 10 times heaiver and better. This was the best song of the night, and I'd have payed just to see the one song. they played the same outro afterwards as they did at Glasto, and it sounded just as good. Phenomenal.
Then they went off stage. But it was obvious they were going to an Encore, and after a couple of minutes, they came back on, and Matt dedicated the firsat Encore song to "all the pepole at the back Who are f--king miles away."
16. Starlight - Matt got the whole crowd to clap along to the drum beat, and everybody was stading up by now, singing along to many peoples favourite Muse song, the one everybody seems to know right now. I loved it, the chorus was great, I enjoyed clapping along to the almost legendary drum beat, and loved screaming "Black holes and revbelations" along with Matt. Birlliant song, brillaintly played.
17. New Born - I forgot that they hadnt played this song up until now, so when they did, I was ecstatic. The piano intro was flwless, and when the intro finished, Matt made some crzy noises on guitar again and then stood at the front of the stage with his arms out as if to say "I am god bow down to me", which most people did. Then he burst into the heavy riff, and the headbanging came out again. Fantastic riff, the solo was prefect and the outro was outstanding. I'd been looking forward to hearing that riff Live and I wasn't dissapointed.
18. Knights Of Cydonia - another of my favourite Muse songs, and an obvious gig ender. The whole song seemed to build up to the "no-ones gonna take me alive" part, which everyobody sang at the tops of their voices. I had hairs standing on the back of my neck from it cos it was so amazing. Then the drums built up and the whole band dived into the amazing fantastic brilliant riff that I knew would cause a huge mosh pit in the standing crowds, which it did. I didn't want the song to end 'cause it was so good, and when it did, Matt and Dom played a slightly extended outro. As they went off stage, smoke shot up from jets at the front of the stage, and the 'spaceship' thingy that Doms drumkit was set on kind of, closed up, which was really cool. Fantastic. // 10
Overall Impression: Muse at the Manchester MEN Arena on 10th November 2006 were absolutely fantastic. Technically perfect, great setlist, olny missing Citzen Erased and Microcuts. I'd have really liked to see them tbh. But I wasn't dissapointed at all by the band. Absolutely phenomenal. It just showed why they are one the best bands around 'cause they're great in their recordings as well as Live. The opening band, the Noisettes, were very like the Yeah Yeah Yeah's and I was disspaointed by them cos they didn't build me up for Muse at all. I think they are probably good recorded but they just wernt big and loud enough to support Muse at the MEN. The sitting tickets that I got cost 27.50, and although I'd have loved to have been stading, they were well worth the money. I will definitely go to any Muse gig I get the chcance to, but maybe at a smaller venue so I can get a little closer to the band. Overall though, fantastic. I'm not just being biased, cos anybody should see this band and theyd love them becuase they're just so good. Fantastic night. // 10