The 2nd Law: Isolated System
by Muse

Album: The 2nd Law (2012)

Songfacts®:

  • This follows on from "The 2nd Law: Unsustainable" on The 2nd Law and both are doom-drenched operas full of newsreel reports from the end of civilization. "It's the noise of humanity on a tiny planet in the middle of nothing," Matt Bellamy chuckled to NME. "Hanging around space would be so peaceful and quiet and suddenly you come to this little blip that's f---ing chaos! I see it us drifting away from the planet and going into the peacefulness of what is gonna happen at the end of it all, which is nothingness."
  • Bellamy told the Metro how his television viewing as a child influenced his thinking. "'I'm part of that generation who had ecological concerns instilled into us by Blue Peter and Newsround," he said. "At the same time, there's that tension about whether we should restrict our natural state or push forward and survive against the odds. As a species, we have limited resources but at the same time I don't want to regress."
  • Matt Bellamy discussed with Q magazine how this mainly instrumental piece, "devolves into the sound of the universe cooling down." He explained: "In my mind I'm saying, 'I want to create the sound of the universe cooling down' [laughs], even though it's a ridiculously abstract idea it makes you approach a sound in a particular day. You're thinking, this piano part should slowing down, there should be some deep reverb here and it goes further and further. It's things like that, abstract ideas, that you try to get the music to conjure up in some way."
  • This song features in the zombie-apocalypse thriller, World War Z. "When we started making this film a couple years ago we discussed trying to find a 'Tubular Bells,' which is the theme song to The Exorcist," explained the film's producer and star Brad Pitt. "It wasn't written for The Exorcist. The Exorcist appropriated it and then it became the theme song from there. But we wanted to have that same kind of feeling."

    When Pitt and crew arrived at this song, they discovered the Muse band members had been reading the Max Brooks authored World War Z book when they recorded The 2nd Law.

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