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Lancashire County Cricket Ground
4 September 2010

With the crowd growing ever more impatient, around fifty ordinary men and women walk onto the exact same stage three extraordinary men would stand minutes later. Holding various signs bearing slogans such as "They will not force us", the protesters give an obvious clue to what we can expect to happen next. The protesters move off stage only for Christopher Wolstenholme to enter stage, closely followed by fellow band mates, Dom and Matt. The crowd goes crazy as the blaring intro to "Uprising" begins.

The first thing you have to notice about Muse other than the sound are the crazy outfits.  The frontman who's dressed in a suit that closely resembles a disco ball jumps, no wait, almost flies around stage like a superhero while the bassist looks like he could be Beetlejuice in an eccentric black and white striped suit.

Somehow though, he can still pull this look off in a way that makes the crowd idolise him and want that suit. Dom, however, looks like he's just walked out of some cheesy 80's space movie in a shiny silver spandex jumpsuit that is actually rather disturbing.

You can tell the thing that is going through every onlookers mind is "What on earth is that guy wearing this time?!" The thing is, he still looks good. Damn it, he even manages to look good in a Spiderman suit as some hardcore Muse fans will know!

The stage is exactly what you'd expect from Saint Matthew and co; totally alien. Just looking at it makes you feel dizzy as it's impossible to judge the depth (if you're human that is).

It's a supermassive diamond structure that carries 51 LED screens and 49 projection panels down it's sides which all contribute to Muse's outstanding visual effects. The plane that passes above halfway through the setlist just adds to the effects because in the minds if the thousands of fans staring up at it, it isn't a boring old aeroplane; it's the zetas coming to take over the world and Muse are the only ones that can stop them with the power of their music.

It's obvious that Matt Bellamy is extremely talented but when the Rachmaninoff-esque piano interlude kicks in halfway through "Butterflies and Hurricanes" you begin to question whether it is actually possible for one single human being to be so skilled. It is evident that I'm not the only one who thought this as the majority of the crowd now has their jaw glued to the floor; all in some weird, stupefied trance.

The only real downside to this gig (before you yell at me for insulting Muse just listen!) was the absence of the huge chrome UFO Muse have been promising to unveil since being unable to pass the strict health and safety regulations at V in 2008.

It has been used numerous times around mainland Europe during their gigantic stadium tour but unfortunately this venue was not built with plans to accommodate a big, fat UFO. As far as I know, in 1857 they didn't have any idea that one of the biggest and strangest live bands Britain has ever produced would be playing there 153 years later; to the dismay of the Muse fans today.

As Chris and Dom end "MK Jam" perfectly, the intro to "Undisclosed Desires" kicks in as the band rise up into the air on a, well, flying saucer of a stage. Matt has now swapped the stunning grand piano which he used for "United States of Eurasia" and "Feeling Good" for an equally attractive Manson Keytar as they rise above the crowd and conquer the world. Ok, so maybe not the world but Muse are more than capable of flabbergasting an entire stadium of around 55,000 fans. This is the sort of venue Muse were destined to play from day one.

"Resistance" draws to a close with a dramatic drumbeat from Dom and a depressing, distorted, whaling sound from Matt's guitar. It sounds like the sort of music you'd get in a sad scene on telly but Muse actually convey a true sense of emotion here and the crowd is completely silent for the first time all night. This silence is soon broken by the upbeat drum rhythm of "Starlight" and the audience begin to clap enthusiastically along with the familiar tune.

While watching this space-age, rock, megashow it's hard to believe that just 3 years ago Muse were new to the realm of stadium tours. Mad Matt prances around stage making it evident that this is what he was born to do. He is truly a musical genius.

The lulling falsetto of "Exogenesis: Symphony Part 1 (Overture)' marks the beginning of the end of what was an amazing night as encore number one starts. This is contrasted by one of Muse's heavier songs, "Stockholm Syndrome" which induces some moshing from the fans.

Muse exit the stage leaving the crowd gobsmacked and screaming for more. Muse enter for their final encore a good five minutes later, Matt now wearing a rather flashy suit. Literally. It is covered in tons of LED lights.

After playing Take A Bow on the flying saucer, they come back to earth for the air raid sirens of "Plug In Baby" and the galloping beat of "Knights of Cydonia". Muse finally exit stage for good this time with steam jets covering them and a mass of astounded fans. After this, there is no doubt Muse are the greatest live band around today.

Review by Abigail Suter

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