Simulation Theory World Tour
|Simulation Theory Promo Shows||←||Simulation Theory World Tour|
A world tour that began on 22nd February of 2019 in Houston, Texas. The still running EU leg of the tour began in late May in Prague, and will be followed by a few gigs in South America and one gig in Asia. The tour will probably be elongated even more.
Howard admitted they've gone too far with this tour.
This is the first Muse tour in which the open-air show is the same as the arena show (excluding occasional song additions for open-air shows). It is also the first full headlining tour to not feature song rotations. Despite the tour originally planned to be a global stadium-only tour, the entire first portion of the tour in USA took place in arenas, with the stadium shows starting to take place with the Prague gig on May 26th, 2019. According to George Reeves, Muse's production manager, the initial planning conversations about the tour took place in all the way back in 2017.
Before the rehearsals or the tour production itself started, Bellamy talked about two hour sets. He also mentioned playing a 15 minute-or-so "metal medley", featuring bits of heavy songs (not just riffs). He said he'd like to play that because they would like to fit in as many songs in setlists as they can without surpassing two hours too much (due to fatigue). This medley was tested for the first time at the London Royal Albert Hall gig and later again at the Chicago Aragon Ballroom gig, both in 2018. The Royal Albert Hall version of the medley was, so far, the only one to include Dead Star.
Propaganda and the Alternate reality version of Algorithm made their debut on the tour, and the acoustic gospel version of Dig Down made it's return after the Jools Holland performance. Algorithm's AR version has been shortened and a transitional segment into Pressure has been added to it. Pray was shortened and features no Valirian spoken word. Three short instrumental segues called "STT Interstitial" numbered 1, 2 and 3 also appear during the show.
Pray, a song written by Bellamy for Game of Thrones. has also made it's debut on the tour as an intro to The Dark Side. It includes Chris and Dom on big concert drums. The live version of it is shortened and includes no spoken word.
This is also the first tour on which Chris is playing bass, guitar, drums and a keyboard all in one set.
For the European tour, the two were joined by a combination of known local bands aswell as well established acts which are Tom Morello, Weezer, Pale Waves, Dinosaur Pile-Up, The Atavists, Imodium, Kiefer Sutherland, Tiger Cave, Allusinlove, Andy Burrows, The Amazons, Mini Mansions and Miles Kane, all of which supported Muse at various places during the EU legs of the tour.
The creative director behind the production is Jesse Lee Stout. He previously worked with Muse on the Drones 360 World Tour, on which he directed video content and interactive elements of the tour, and later during the North American Summer Amphitheatre Tour and the festival tour, where he took over the role of the production designer. Bellamy kept Stout up to date with ideas and his fascination with metamodernism during the album writing process. These conversations with Matt led to him working together on getting the looks right on the album packaging and promo photography, and later becoming the creative director for this tour. According to Stout, during the show, you can see various references to 80s and 90s pop culture (hints such as Gremlins, E.T., Terminator, Aliens, Back to the Future etc.).
The stage design is similar to The Unsustainable Tour with the long catwalk, the big B-Stage and a big LED screen - but it still includes unique elements.
The main stage is designed as three basic diamond squares blending into each other. The stage then includes three more diamonds, which are smaller and are risen above the main stage. The center diamond acts as a drum riser and the side diamonds act as tech bunkers, aswell as platforms, on which you can access the final seventh and eighth diamonds, one on each side of the main stage, which are risen up even more and are bigger in diameter, representing stage wings.
As mentioned, a larger B-Stage in the shape of a diamond is also present, with a longer catwalk connecting it with the main stage. The outer edges of the stage are all lit up with thinner solid light strips.
Behind the main-stage sits a big LED screen, with the sides of it being slightly bent outwards.
Finally, above the stage, is where the lighting trussing is. The whole of it is designed, when lit with strip lightning, to look vaguely similar, in overall shape, to the space ship featured on the Simulation Theory album cover art.
The tour also takes place on a few more regular stages, on the Werchter Festival and the IndyCar Classic Festival. For these shows, the stage design was kept the same as with the regular tour shows, however, the diamond-shaped podiums used were just regular stage risers with no additional lighting on the edge or the risers. A B-Stage with the catwalk was however present on both gigs, however, at the IndyCar Classic gig, it was limited to not having the riser, and thus the show's setlist had to be modified (e.g. the show starting with Pressure as Matt wasn't able to rise from underneath the B-Stage).
Murph the Skeleton Robot
As Stout said, "Murph" is the center piece of the show. He is based on the "Creator" from The Dark Side music video.
Throughout the entire show, the viewer can see Murph originating as one of the performers, which is injected with a flesh-eating pathogen and enchanced with robotic prosthetics, outfitted with a VR mask. He is then confined into a glass prison cell, which he escapes and later manifests physically into the venue - as an inflatable puppet.
Stout wanted the puppet to appear, in the context of the show, as a video game end boss that the band defeats at the end of Metal Medley and rejoices with the final song, Knights of Cydonia.
The nickname "Murph" is a homage to Murphy from RoboCop.
According to Howard, the band initially didn't want to unveil the puppet Murph, and wanted to surprise fans on the first show, but once they got it going at rehearsals, they couldn't resist posting content with it on their Instagram.
Bellamy was, during 2018 interviews, mentioning including performers during the shows. He drew some ideas for that from David Byrne's shows, which also include choreographed performances. He also mentioned once the shows being Beyonce-esque.
This tour features a group of 14 dancers performing during certain songs in the show (Algorithm - including the AR version, Drill Sergeant, Pressure, Propaganda, Break it to Me, Thought Contagion, Dig Down Acoustic and Starlight) and accompanying the band and the show.
During certain songs, the performers are in charge of lighting (spotlights during Break it to Me) and special effects (handheld CO2 cannons during Propaganda).
For stadium shows, more dancers are present in the team than for arena shows.
Enhanced Experience Package
The enhanced experience packages contain access to the "Mixed Reality Pre-Show Party", which will include photo opportunities with various props and whatnot from the Simulation Theory music videos, a bar service and a station with a series of VR-based arcade machine games (which have been made and produced by Microsoft and the band).
The VR games include:
- Simulation Striker - a motion controller based game - player enters a hallway (seen in Break It To Me video), a portal (seen in the Algorithm video) opens up infront of the player and various shapes fly out of it. The player has to punch them out in order to survive. The game is soundtracked by Algorithm.
- Retrograde Racer - a racing based game - player races through a futuristic world filled with neon tunnels and a desert wasteland (based on the one in The Dark Side/Something Human videos). The player must dodge skeletons and various road blocks. The game is soundtracked by The Dark Side.
- Spaceship Defender - another motion controller based game - player has to pilot a spaceship whilst being attacked by critters (seen in Pressure music video). The game is soundtracked by Pressure.
- Algorithm (Alternate Reality Version shortened)
- [Drill Sergeant] + Psycho
- Break It to Me
- Uprising (extended intro and outro)
- Plug In Baby
- The Dark Side
- Close Encounters intro + Supermassive Black Hole
- Thought Contagion
- Interlude + Hysteria + Back in Black outro
- Dig Down (Acoustic Gospel Version)
STT Interstitial 1
- Time is Running Out
- Houston Jam + Take a Bow
- Prelude + Starlight
EncoreSTT Interstitial 2
- Stockholm Syndrome (shortened)
- Assassin (intro) + Reapers (shortened)
- The Handler (shortened)
- New Born (shortened) + Headup riff outro
- Man with a Harmonica + Knights of Cydonia
- Undisclosed Desires was played at some outdoor shows after Dig Down.
- Bliss was added to some outdoor sets after Hysteria as of the London Stadium tour debut.
|2019-10-15||Hipódromo de Monterrico||Lima, Peru|
|2019-10-13||Pista Atlética||Santiago, Chile|
|2019-10-11||Hipódromo de Palermo||Buenos Aires, Argentina|
|2019-10-09||Allianz Parque||Sao Paulo, Brazil|
|2019-10-03||Foro Sol||Mexico City, Mexico|
|2019-10-02||Foro Sol||Mexico City, Mexico|
|2019-09-08||Ziggo Dome||Amsterdam, Netherlands|
|2019-09-08||Royal Arena||Copenhagen, Denmark|
|2019-09-07||Telenor Arena||Oslo, Norway|
|2019-07-26||Wanda Metropolitano||Madrid, Spain|
|2019-07-24||Passeio Maritimo de Alges||Lisbon, Portugal|
|2019-07-20||Olympic Stadium||Rome, Italy|
|2019-07-16||Matmut Atlantique||Bordeaux, France|
|2019-07-13||San Siro Stadium||Milan, Italy|
|2019-07-12||San Siro Stadium||Milan, Italy|
|2019-07-09||Stade Orange Velodrom||Marseille, France|
|2019-07-06||Stade de France||Paris, France|
|2019-07-05||Stade de France||Paris, France|
|2019-06-22||Tauron Arena||Krakow, Poland|
|2019-06-18||Suvilahti Open Air||Helsinki, Finland|
|2019-06-15||Luzhniki Stadium||Moscow, Russia|
|2019-06-12||Arena Riga||Riga, Latvia|
|2019-06-08||Etihad Stadium||Manchester, England|
|2019-06-05||Ashton Gate Stadium||Bristol, England|
|2019-06-01||London Stadium||London, England|
|2019-05-29||Stadthalle Graz||Graz, Austria|
|2019-05-28||Papp László Sports Arena||Budapest, Hungary|
|2019-05-26||Letňany Airport||Prague, Czech Republic|
|2019-04-12||United Center||Chicago, IL, USA|
|2019-04-10||TD Garden||Boston, MA, USA|
|2019-04-08||Madison Square Garden||New York City, NY, USA|
|2019-04-07||Wells Fargo Center||Philadelphia, PA, USA|
|2019-04-04||Little Caesars Arena||Detroit, MI, USA|
|2019-04-02||Capital One Arena||Washington, DC, USA|
|2019-03-31||Videotron Centre||Québec City, Canada|
|2019-03-30||Bell Centre||Montreal, Canada|
|2019-03-28||Scotiabank Arena||Toronto, Canada|
|2019-03-26||State Farm Arena||Atlanta, GA, USA|
|2019-03-24||BB&T Center||Sunrise, FL, USA|
|2019-03-23||Austin360 Amphitheater||Austin, TX, USA|
|2019-03-11||The Forum||Los Angeles, CA, USA|
|2019-03-09||Oracle Arena||Oakland, CA, USA|
|2019-03-07||Golden 1 Center||Sacramento, CA, USA|
|2019-03-05||Valley View Casino Center||San Diego, CA, USA|
|2019-03-02||Mandalay Bay Events Center||Las Vegas, CA, USA|
|2019-02-28||Vivent Smart Home Arena||Salt Lake City, UT, USA|
|2019-02-26||Talking Stick Resort Arena||Phoenix, AZ, USA|
|2019-02-24||American Airlines Center||Dallas, TX, USA|
|2019-02-22||Toyota Center||Houston, TX, USA|