Muse, The 2nd Law
It would be a stretch to say I'm a fanatic of Britpop prog rockers, Muse, but I have been a fan of a number of their tracks and their previous records, Absolution and Black Holes and Revelations. Even though they started going all rock opera in 2009's The Resistance, I was still interested in hearing what the October release of The 2nd Law was going to sound like.
After hearing the lead single and official theme song of the 2012 London Olympics, "Survival," it was pretty clear the band was going to continue their venture into bombastic arena anthems. Boy did they. Much to my disappointment, instead of getting something closer to Queen epicness, the record as a whole reminds me more like something we might hear from a Skrillex/Trans-Siberian Orchestra collab. While I always appreciate a band's need to evolve and explore different horizons, I can't help but feel like Muse took a step in the wrong direction. -- Anthony Sandoval
The Announcement of Rush's Induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
Rush has been eligible for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame since 1998, and since that time Rush fans have consistently had something to bitch about each year, and artists like Prince, Guns N' Roses, The Sex Pistols, John Mellencamp, ABBA, and Tom Waits have been ushered in, leaving the "Holy Triumvirate" out in the Canadian cold.
But finally -- alongside Donna Summer, Randy Newman, Heart, and more -- it was announced that the band would finally be inducted. And that sucks. Not because Rush doesn't deserve it -- in fact, the trio is ranked behind only The Beatles and Rolling Stones for the most consecutive gold or platinum studio albums by a rock band -- but because I just sort of loved that it gave Rush fans something to rally against.
2012 will go down as the year I got Rushified, and I spent a good chunk of a few months diving into the band's catalog, reading old interviews, and staring at the super cool cover of Fly By Night. What strikes me most is that the band has never been about things like the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and the Hall's continued snubbing of the band just fits with the do-your-own-thing/Rush-fans-are-a-tribe narrative. It made Rush feel that much more underdoggy -- they play for the fans, not the stuffy critics sending down validation from on high.
It's cool that the Hall has finally come around, but when it comes down to it, Rush needs the Rock and Roll HOF honors about as much as Deep Purple and KISS (both snubbed again this year) do -- which is to say, not at all. -- Jason P. Woodbury