Muse can write songs to be as electric, fast and heavy as what many would consider heavy metal. However, for those looking for such songs on 2nd Law —like Muse classics “Unnatural Selection” or “Stockholm Syndrome”— you will likely be disappointed.

There are still intense songs but less guitar-driven, more synth-infused and bass heavy. Try the opener “Supremacy” or the moody “Animals” on for size to hear that distinction. Unfortunately, on “Survival” — the official song of the London 2012 Olympics Games — Muse jumps the shark into some really bombastic waters. If Manowar had shrunk their testicles, you’d might get this song out of them. Not exactly a compliment. Let’s move on.

The majority of the songs throughout 2nd Law are mostly good, not necessarily great, compositions — a grand, soul-searching album that falls short of past achievements. Personally speaking, it may be my least favorite Muse album to date but I will still, for the most part, enjoy it. Sometimes, that’s all that counts.