Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
A good B-sides album, a fantastic live album
alexliamw | Oxford | 08/09/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The quest for world domination continues. Here is Muse's third instalment of progressive, heavy rock. This time it's a double CD of B-sides and live songs. First, the B-sides. It must be said that Muse have a fairly set sound, and a lot of their songs sound fairly similar. Upon closer inspection, you will notice that it is mainly Matt Bellamy's voice that causes this effect. This is more evident that ever on the B-sides album. Many of these songs experiment further away from their album tracks. Opener Forced In is spaced out and eerie rather than in-your-face, and Map of Your Head is a sprightly, major-chord formed ditty, complete with medieval acoustic guitar, yet Matt Bellamy's voice causes them to sound like trademark Muse all the same.There's no denying it, Muse's B-sides are not as strong as their album tracks, generally. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Whilst it does mean that this B-side album is nowhere near as good as last year's Origin of Symmetry, it at least means that they are selecting the right tracks for their albums. In this way B-sides albums are a bit of a no-win situation: if they are only average, they are criticised as substandard and if they are excellent the band are criticised for not making them album tracks. Not that there aren't good efforts here. The aforementioned Map of Your Head is very enjoyable, whilst Shrinking Universe is classic Muse and standout Nature_1 has the strongest tune on the CD. Generally though, this collection doesn't bear the killer hooklines that Origin of Symmetry, or, indeed, Showbiz did, whilst being enjoyable and worth owning, so CD1 gets 3 stars.The live CD is a different matter. Muse are an intense band. Everything about their music is intense. And intense bands are excellent live. Muse are no exception. Live CDs tend to either be interesting variations on the recorded versions with added intensity but played comparatively poorly, with the singer missing notes, or well played, but no different to the studio recordings. Here Muse manage to avoid either trap, managing to sound live and intense while playing very professionally.Here you can hear how well the trio work together, with bass more audible than on studio recordings, as they sometimes hit little periods of improvisation. Variations are added to the songs: the guitar riff on Muscle Museum is made more complex, while Micro Cuts is taken at a faster and more natural pace, and epics Citizen Erased and Megalomania hit their peaks and valleys with even more passion than on Origin of Symmetry: one of the finest moments of Hullabaloo being as Citizen Erased quietens down after its loudest sections, with Matt Bellamy beautifully handling the vocals, in a wonderfully exhausted sort of way.It is credit to Bellamy's fantastic singing that he can manage the incredibly high notes and difficult techniques just as easily live as in the studio. The only time he seems slightly pressed is on recent non-album single Dead Star, though this is fully explainable by the fact that they had not actually recorded it at the time, and so had not benefited from the producer's input over how the song should sound, and they are evidently not quite done working on it at the time of the recording. Still, even this track is fantastic. Therefore, CD2 is nothing short of brilliant, and it gets 4 1/2 stars."
If you like live music and muse....
Carol E Blinov | Fort McMurray, Alberta Canada | 08/30/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you're seriously considering buying this album, your main question should be "Is it worth the 30-some dollars HMV is asking?" The answer is both yes and no. Disc one is Muse's B-sides, some of which deserve to be album tracks, or in the case of Hyper Chondriac Music, singles. Besides that song, the best on here are Map of Your Head, Shrinking Universe (another potential single) and Forced In.Disc two, however, is where things get interesting. Most likely, you've heard/bought Absolution, and perhaps stolen a few mp3s of previous Muse albums(especially Origin of Symmetry). However difficult it may seem, the studio is NOT Muse's best part (although amazing). THAT, is reserved for their live show. I mean, earlier in the year, Matt (lead vocals/guitar) accidentlly hit himself in the face while playing in Canada for one of the first times. At times like Dead Star and Agitated (which open and close the album respectively) you can practically hear this man rocking out like no other. This concert was wayyyyyy before Absolution, so there is no "Time is Running Out". However, Muse do a large portion of Origin of Symmetry, with a few oldies thrown in, plus 2 new tracks (which were the singles off this album), Dead Star and In Your World.Overall, I recommend this if you're a hardcore Muse fan...but if you ARE a hardcore Muse fan, just search online and buy a DVD of this concert, and watch Muse show you why they put out a live album in the first place!and, because amazon/hmv haven't done this...DISC ONE TRACKLISTING (B-Sides)
Map Of Your Head
Hyper Chondriac MusicDISC TWO TRACKLISTING (Live Concert)
In Your World
What's all the "Hullabaloo" about?
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 05/01/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"British band Muse broke out in the US with their third album "Absolution," and establishing them as a remarkable new rock band. They're epic, intensedark, and majestic in a proggy-Pink-Floyd-meets-Led-Zeppelin kind of way, and so it's hardly a surprise that "Hullabaloo" is a remarkably strong collection.
No, it's not a new album. Rather, it's a collection of B-sides, rarities, and a 2001 live concert. Most bands don't sound too great in either case, but Muse does. The first disc is made up of their B-sides and rarities, which tend to be quite good actually.
It doesn't start off promising, with the schizophrenic prog-rocker "Forced In," which would be fine if it weren't for the endlessly cycling synth that obscures everything else. But things get stronger after that, with the explosive downward spiral that is "Shrinking Universe" ("There's nothing left to die for!"), the softer poppy "Recess," and the surprisingly gentle acoustic ballad "Map Of your Head."
Most of the other songs follow those examples, either being epic and bombastic or quieter and more intimate. With, of course, some eerier songs thrown in, like the rippling sweetness of "Shine Acoustic." Are they as good as Muse's proper albums, especially since a few B-sides sound like the lost soundtrack of the X-Files? Not really, but they are remarkably good, and still better than average.
Which brings us to the live performance, which took place in October of 2001, in Paris's "Le Zenith." Well, to put it simply, these guys rock. It opens with a cheering crowd, right before they kick off into a tornado of bass, drums and guitar. Unlike many rock bands, these guys lose none of their power or musical richness in live performances.
The inevitable flaw? Well, that would probably be Matt Bellamy -- he doesn't sound too different from in the albums, but it's sometimes hard to hear him above the drums, explosive synth and spiralling bass. However, the guys lose none of their intensity musically, and it's hard to find a single flaw in their playing. If Muse are known for their prowess in live performances, then it's easy to see why.
The B-sides are a minor treasure trove, while the live album is a gem in itself, bringing their concert to life as nothing -- except a DVD -- could. A must-have for Muse fans."
Great band, great music, worst camera footage ever.
Tai-Pan | Tally, FL | 10/05/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"First, let me warn you that your DVD will probably only play on your computer. Second, the music and band are incredible. Third, the absolute worst live production that I've ever seen.
This is strictly going to be a background video for me. The music is great but the cuts are every nano second. You may think I'm exaggerating, but if it's not a nano second per shot, then it's pretty close. You will have a seizure within the first minute while the shots are cut to the drum beat.
The bad part about this.....these guys are awesome to watch. It's a three-piece genious....and you can't focus on anything for more than a split second. One of the best things about Muse live is their presence. This production is so bad it makes them look awful. If this production company knew anything about cutting footage, they'd have left the camera focused on one person for at least a few seconds.
Don't get me wrong, I'm the last person to complain as you can verify yourself if you so desire. But, this instance was too painful for me. The clarity of the footage is brilliant.....but cuts wrecked it. Makes the quick shots on an MTV video look long.
Buy this thing strictly for the sound. The DVD will otherwise produce the worst seizure/headache ever!
Cheers! I'm going to look for something a little complimentary in the live footage area."