- Album Title: TBD
- Release Date: Late 2018
- Label: Warner
- Recording Dates: December 2016-Present
- Status: Had at least 3 songs started in spring 2017; officially began recording in October 2017
- Lead Single: "Dig Down," out May 18, 2017
- Second Single: "Thought Contagion," out February 15, 2018
- Expected Sound: Acoustic and stripped back; hip-hop; an evolution and different from what they've done before; cohesive yet musically diverse
- Expected Themes: Politics, social issues
- Songwriters: Matthew Bellamy
In June 2015, Muse released their 7th studio album, Drones. The first song we heard was the aggressive "Psycho," followed by gentler singles "Dead Inside" and "Mercy" and a number of promo tracks. The album signaled a kind of return to their roots. Over the last two decades, Muse have pursued increasingly symphonic and electronic music, but Drones focused on simple guitar, bass, and drums. The songs were as energetic and rocking as ever, while the lyrics painted a concept centered on government control. Muse toured extensively, but soon they were already thinking about album #8.
Just months after Drones came out, drummer Dominic Howard said the band wanted to evolve and really lose their minds on the next album. In January 2016, he wasn't sure they'd even release a proper album, saying they may go the route of standalone singles or sets of tracks instead. By the end of the year, though, the band was describing their next album. Frontman Matthew Bellamy first said they might try to strip it back this time and make a more acoustic record. He later said he wanted to do a hip-hop album... possibly joking? They said the album would probably be ready in 2018, with a song or two in 2017 if we're lucky.
Muse started sharing studio pictures in December 2016 and January 2017. They continued to share rare sneak peeks through spring, and then Matt made an exciting announcement: New single coming soon! In early May, Muse shared a few videos of them filming a music video, also "coming soon." On May 11th, the announced that their single "Dig Down" would be out on May 18th!
In October 2017, Muse officially began recording the new album beyond the three songs they'd started the prior spring. On February 15, 2018, the band released their second single, "Thought Contagion." They stated they'd release a few more songs before the album would drop. Though they're aiming for a late 2018 release, the album may not be out until 2019.