Flashback Album of the Week

Jeff Yerger

The year 2003 introduced us to both 50 Cent and “Stacy’s Mom.” It was the first time we brought it to the window to the wall, and the big craze in the music business was shaking it like a Polaroid picture.

To be honest, 2003 wasn’t the most exciting year for music, and needless to say, there was little room for experimental rock to hit the mainstream in the U.S., that is, until Muse stormed the scene with their breakthrough album “Absolution”.

Already gaining some momentum with their previous album “Origin of Symmetry,” Muse came to the studio with a mission to take their time and record something thought-out and special, as they felt their first two studio albums were a bit rushed. Indeed, the extra time was well spent, as it produced six hit singles and catapulted Muse into rock stardom.

On this album, Muse broke away from the alternative rock mold, and created something more massive; something on a totally different level. “Absolution” brings out the power in their music, whether it’s the riff-heavy songs like “Stockholm Syndrome” and “Hysteria,” or the eerie impact of “Sing for Absolution.”

Muse also delved ambitiously into the complexities of classical music, and from now on there is no doubt that frontman Matt Bellamy is one of the most multi-talented artists of our generation. This is apparent in “Butterflies and Hurricanes,” which is a nice blend of urgent guitar-work and ascending piano arpeggios, as well as the fragile dreamlike violins make “Blackout” one of Muse’s most beautiful songs to date.

Other highlights include the funky, finger-snapping “Time Is Running Out” and the plea for the end of the world “Apocalypse Please.”

Muse’s “Absolution” is surely not the sign of the apocalypse, but rather a sign of hope that maybe all music out there isn’t so bad.

With this album, Muse proves that it is still okay to try new things and be successful at it.

Thanks to this genre-bending album, Muse has made itself world-wide superstars. It’s about time you join the ride as well.