Muse are an English rock band from Teignmouth, Devon, formed in 1994. The band consists of Matt Bellamy (lead vocals, guitar, piano, keyboards), Chris Wolstenholme (bass guitar, backing vocals, keyboards) and Dominic Howard (drums, percussion). The band released their debut album, Showbiz, in 1999, showcasing an aggressive and melancholic alternative rock style. Their second album, Origin of Symmetry (2001), expanded their sound, combining Bellamy's falsetto, heavier riffs, wider instrumentation, and romantic classical influences. It earned them mainstream European success and a reputation for energetic live performances.
Muse mix sounds from genres such as electronic music, progressive metal and art rock, and forms such as classical music, rock opera and many others. The band's style has been also described as "space rock." In 2002, Bellamy described Muse as a "trashy three-piece". In 2005, Pitchfork described Muse's music as "firmly ol' skool at heart: proggy hard rock that forgoes any pretensions to restraint ... their songs use full-stacked guitars and thunderous drums to evoke God's footsteps."
Many Muse songs are recognizable by lead vocalist Matt Bellamy's use of vibrato, falsetto, and melismatic phrasing, influenced by Jeff Buckley. As a pianist, Bellamy often uses arpeggios. Bellamy's compositions often suggest or quote late classical and romantic era composers. The bassline, performed by Wolstenholme, is the central motif of many Muse songs, usually fuzz bass, an overdriven, distorted tone.
Muse have won numerous awards, including five MTV Europe Music Awards, eight NME Awards, two Brit Awards, and two Grammy Awards, winning the Grammy awards for Best Rock Album for The Resistance and Drones. They have sold over 20 million albums worldwide.