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Pickourteam.com: Why Arsenal are the Muse of Football


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This is from the 26th of May, it might be interesting for those who like football. Or not. Whatever.


Arsenal, though:



I almost certainly would have forgotten about bland, monotonous Scottish indie-rockers Glasvegas, were it not for lead singer James Allen featuring in one of the finest pieces of obscure football trivia around.


Allan was once a promising winger, making 105 league appearances for a variety of Scottish clubs including Queen's Park, who play at Scotland's national football ground, Hampden Park. Years later, after his football career had finished and his music career was approaching its peak, Glasvegas supported U2 at the same venue. Therefore, Allan has performed at a big stadium nothing a 52,000 UEFA Four Star Stadium, no less (although Queens Park rarely get more than 1000 through the gates) nothing as both a musician and a footballer.

Few can match that achievement nothing but the next best thing is when a band performs at the home ground of a club perfectly fitting their style. What could be better than Muse's two dates this weekend at the Emirates? Muse are essentially Arsene Wenger's Arsenal.


Originally about speed and unpredictability, there was always purpose and direction rather than interminable build-up. When a Muse track started slowly there was a change of pace midway through; New Born, the opening song from second album Origin of Symmetry, turned from a whiney opening into a high-tempo, powerful refrain in the manner Thierry Henry would receive a pass to feet, then roar through the opposition defence without warning.


Between 1998 and 2004 Muse released three fine albums as Arsenal recorded their only three Premier League title successes. Arsenal's high point was unquestionably the confirmation of their unbeaten season in May 2004, a month before Muse played Glastonbury, which they describe themselves as ³the best gig of our lives.²


Then came the summer of 2006. As Muse released lead single Supermassive Black Hole from an album entitled Black Holes and Revelations, marking a change into rather overblown, self-indulgent space rock, Arsenal moved into their shiny, space-age new stadium.


Something was different. The immediacy had disappeared: Muse's guitar riffs whirled around and around without really progressing, as Arsenal lost the acceleration of Henry, Robert Pires and Freddie Ljungberg and signed a succession of wide players constantly drifting inside and playing a square pass, rather than breaking in behind. You expect the drawn-out prelude, but where's the end product?


Listening to Muse's recent output feels like watching Alex Hleb, the talented Belarusian playmaker who had a remarkable tendency to dribble forward promisingly to the edge of the box, and then just when you were expecting a shot, he turned backwards and fell over. Pitchfork's review of Muse's latest release describes the band's sound as 'technically boastful', which neatly summarises Arsenal's playing style.


Sometimes it feels like Muse have forgotten what made them good. They were once a straightforward power trio, now there's too much over complication nothing too many distracting individual parts. Arsenal once ripped through opponents with passing triangles nothing at their ineffective worst a couple of years ago, it was more like passing decagons. Wenger is aware of this, however, blasting his players for 'sterile domination' and saying possession dominance without penetration is 'an illusion'.


Muse, on the other hand, ended their fifth album with three tracks entitled 'Exogenesis: Symphony Part One (Overture)', 'Exogenesis: Symphony Part Two (Cross-Pollination)' and 'Exogenesis: Symphony Part Three (Redemption)'. It verges on self-parody.

Their latest release, The 2nd Law, isn't a disaster, but the exaggerated positive reaction from fans feels like celebrating fourth too keenly. Still, if you can sell out the Emirates at £50 a ticket, it's job done.


Read more: http://pickourteam.com/premierleague/news/26-05-2013/why-arsenal-are-the-muse-of-football/832642#ixzz2VHpFbdTr

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