Words fae Oliver Butler (@notoliverbutler)
Remember the person you had a crush on in high school? That they were the alpha and the omega, the sun and the moon, everything they touched turned to gold and they were your perfect vision. Time moves on, you explore the world a bit more, and actually, they haven’t gotten better with age… they’re actually a bit naff now.
Apropos of nothing, Muse are back with a brand new track, Something Human. Sentimental in its delivery, this was the first track written by Matt Bellamy after coming off the gruelling Drones tour. Dealing with the themes of burning out, and just generally being on the road, it’s quite a meaningful track.
However, sonically, it just doesn’t really land. Matt delivered an acoustic performance of this on Muse’s Instagram and that actually sounded better as an acoustic track, perhaps with the band coming in later on. In the studio version, it’s a more synth-heavy version in the same vein as Dig Down and Thought Contagion. But it just feels a bit thin. The synth feels stock, like something you’d bang together in Fruity Loops. It just feels a bit phoned in, like Muse are slowly making the transition to a greatest hits band.
It just leave you wanting something else, it feels half done. It feels like you’ve cooked chicken nuggets (or a vegan alternative), but they’re just a bit frozen in the middle, and you want something better. It’s not like this song is unlistenable, because it’s very easy on the ears, you just don’t want to listen to it.
Muse, more than anyone, have earned the right to be experimental, with their approach to songwriting and structure producing albums like Origin of Symmetry and Absolution, with ground breaking sound. This isn’t a bad song by any means, but at the same time, it doesn’t grab you, it doesn’t really leave any mark on you. It’s the best of the three tracks, but that’s like saying chlamydia is the best of three venereal diseases. It’s just sort of there, like trifle or the pavement, it doesn’t really leave you wanting more.
Something that shouldn’t pass without penalty though is the video. What the FUCK is that video? This is the worst video on the internet since 2 Girls 1 Cup.
The plot follows Matt, in an eighties theme, with a Lamborghini Countach (very nice), and from what we can tell, he’s got to return a VHS to the store, which he’s been watching through a VR headset.
So he’s bundling along the road in his super car, he’s gotta get to the video store before he gets a fine or something, but the guy’s a fucking multimillionaire rockstar, just buy the fucking video Matt. How much is a VHS, like, £20? Just buy the fucking thing, rerelease Absolution or something to make a few quid. Christ.
However, Matthew’s cavalier approach to speed limits and the laws of… the land he finds himself in… brings him to the attention of the police, in this case, Dom Howard and Chris Wolstenholme. Are these guys actually police officers? This feels suspect, they don’t seem to be qualified officers of the law. So they’re chasing him, and there’s some cringeworthy moves being pulled that makes the Fast & Furious films look positively cerebral.
Pissed off by his former colleague’s shenanigans, Officer Wolstenholme removes his Stetson and pulls out some kind of fucking electromagnetic rocket launcher, putting Matt into a spin, it’s all over! No it isn’t! Matt spins around and is driving straight towards the police car! It’s all over! Not it isn’t! He flips a switch and teleports through the police car, teleporting outside the video store. Why didn’t he just do this in the first place? Talking about “ten thousand miles until I am home” in the song when you could just fucking teleport.
He returns the video tape, the store lights up, then the worst thing ever in the history of internet videos happens: a beam of light comes down from the moon, Matt is lifted into the sky, turning into a werewolf. At this point, Dom and Chris somehow teleport here in a phone box, searching for the miscreant.
For some reason, Matt kills Chris, no idea why, then drives at Dom, knocking over the phone box and driving off. That’s sort of it. Don’t forget, these guys are now in their forties. They have families, mortgages, adult things to do.
So there you have it, a slightly underwhelming track with possibly the worst video in the history of the internet.