2016 Preview: Muse

Muse will be drone-ing on with their Drones World Tour, which returns to the UK in April, but the trio are already thinking about where they will steer their eighth studio album.

“I think we started thinking about what we’re gonna do next as soon as Drones was released in June,” says drummer Dominic Howard. “I think that happens naturally. As far as timing and musically what that’s going to be, that’s a bit difficult to pin down. But we’ve already been talking about what it should be, where it can go and how we’re gonna go about doing that. It might take a couple of years, like it usually does.”

And while Drones brought Muse back to their pompy, bombastic roots, Howard is predicting another sea change ahead.

“I think it’ll be another shift,” he says. “We went into this album all about making it very organic and kind of rock and having this live energy, so
I think next time around it’ll be something completely different. Time to change and evolve again as a band.”

In the meantime, Muse are looking forward to showing off the in-the-round production they launched in November, which takes the band in an ambitious new direction on stage.

“It’s wild,” Howard says. “It’s such a different playing experience, it really is. The audience, for one, just feels so much closer. Particularly for me, because I’m normally sitting at the back of the stage, on a riser, and the audience is always a certain distance away, but now they’re literally a few feet away. So that’s really, really cool. And for Matt [Bellamy, vocals] and Chris [Wolstenholme, bass], I mean, it’s way more of a challenge for those guys because they’re just like walking around, running around all over the place and they have loads of different microphone positions to sing from. So there’s a lot going on.”

Gary Graff

Gary Graff is an award-winning veteran music journalist based in metro Detroit, writing regularly for Billboard, Ultimate Classic Rock, Media News Group, Music Connection, United Stations Radio Networks and others. Graff’s work has also appeared in Rolling Stone, Guitar World, Classic Rock, Revolver, the San Francisco Chronicle, AARP magazine, the Detroit Jewish News, The Forward and others. Graff has co-written and edited books about Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen. A professional voter for the Grammy Awards and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Graff co-founded the Detroit Music Awards in 1989 and continues as the organisation’s chief producer.