by Aaron Martin
Drones is the seventh chapter in MUSE’s dystopian tragedy-epic of a planet enslaved by its trusted leaders, addicted by its own vices, killed by its own technology. Newcomers to Muse’s music will know Drones isn’t some sonic ode to Ray Bradbury, Orson Wells, or – dare we say it – Suzanne Collins. No, vocalist Matthew Bellamy and crew find inspiration for their scathing, guitar squealing, hard-hitting riffs in the good ‘ol here-and-now. And it manifests in Bellamy’s lyrics, such as these lines from ‘Dead Inside': ‘I am crushed and pulverized/Because you need control.’ Songs like ‘Dead Inside’ and the gloomy titular track are a critique of power and privilege, media and disinformation, nationalism and ignorance. Collectively they are a harrowing account of grand schemes allowed to come full circle, of global domination endorsed by hapless masses. Drones is not an album, it’s a warning. The worst is yet to come. And it ain’t for the timid or the faint of heart.