I have to confess that I was both excited and terrified as we began walking down the Great Mall towards Horse Guards Parade.
Excited because I was going to see Muse and Terrified because they were playing a special ‘World War Z’ soundtrack gig.
The gates opened at 7pm but Muse were not due to perform until 9:30pm. 2.5hrs was surely enough time for them to screen the film, right? Watching the film would mean seeing zombies, right? Not good. I HATE zombies. Seriously, it is a problem. I once got stuck on the Northern Line all the way to Morden at Halloween because a hoard of zombies got onto the tube and I froze in fear. Really, I wish I was lying.
So why was I even risking it? Well there is only one thing to rival my fear of zombies, and that is my love for Muse. I was 14 when I first saw them and now, aged 27 I have been to (at least) 16 of their gigs. I’ve seen them grow from a festival warm-up band to the massive headliners they are today, capable of selling out venues such as the O2 and Wembley Stadium.
Ticket in hand, a group of supportive friends recruited and a few rum and cokes for Dutch courage… I was going to see Muse, zombies or not!
Turns out I needn’t have worried. We got in to the grounds to find a people chatting in the sunshine whilst Edith Bowman played the likes of Daft Punk and The Stokes. No zombies anywhere, not even a picture of one. Phew!
At approximately 8:15pm we were told Brad Pitt would be making an appearance. This announcement seemed to split the audience, half murmured in excitement whilst the remaining portion simply wondered why they should care – they were here to see Muse not some long-haired pretty boy. In either case he arrived but no words were spoken so it really made no difference.
At 9:20pm silence fell, the lights dimmed and everyone began to jostle in anticipation. With the sun setting and the air growing cold Muse began their set with ‘Isolated System’ a simple yet atmospheric instrumental track off their ‘2nd Law’ album.
As the words “In an isolated system entropy can only increase” echoed through the courtyard Dom, Chris and Matt walked out onto the stage. The audience erupted in applause, I began to perch on tiptoe and Matt launched straight into an almighty riff that turned neatly into ‘Supremacy’. We were off!
The audience were full of energy – moshing insanely to ‘Uprising’, clapping in time to ‘Starlight’, grooving to ‘Supermassive Blackhole’, singing along to ‘Madness’ and the World War Z official track ‘Follow Me’, which interestingly features Bingham’s (Matt’s son) heartbeat. Not to mention the encore cheer being so loud the Queen surely heard us.
It was a short but ever-so sweet gig. I was so caught up in the frenzy of the jumping, the singing and the enjoyment that I even considered going to see World War Z purely because of Muse’s association with it. However, I quickly realised I don’t need to confront my walking dead fear just yet, I can listen to the album in the daylight with the living instead.
Written and photographed by Jay Stone