This was the first single taken from English alternative rock band Muse's fifth studio album The Resistance.
Singer/guitarist Matt Bellamy described this to Mojo magazine August 2009, in a pre-release interview, as "like a heavy-rock take on Goldfrapp. It has football-style chanting, with all of us going 'Oi!' in time with the snare drum." He added laughing, "It's meant to be football hooligans chanting in protest at the banking situation."
Bellamy told MTV News that this is one of the key tracks on The Resistance. He explained: "It's the first track on the album, it kind of sums up what some of the album's about. You know, just sick of all these bloody bankers, politicians... just turning everything to a load of bol---ks. Just spending money on s--- and blowing everything. So it's kind of like a song that says, 'Take the power back, but have a good time at the same time.' Have a good time all the time, that's what we believe."
A number of reviewers have commented on the guitar riff's similarity to Blondie's "Call Me
Bellamy expanded on this tune to The Sun September 16, 2009: "In the song you can hear the general feeling that we've been let down again by big institutions, which are supposed to be in positions of trust. Politicians obviously and bankers. I've got a flat in the center of London, which is right near all the embassies and I noticed protests on a regular basis. During the G20 protests, the UK, got closer to really making a dramatic change, a non violent revolution. I think the UK needs one and I hope it hasn't died down. Hopefully we can flame it up again."
This reached #1 on the Mediabase Alternative Rock radio chart, making it the British rock trio's first song to reach the top of any US chart.
The Vatican listed this as one of the institution's "12 Favorite Songs" as part of a playlist on MySpace Music. The other eleven songs include "Don Giovanni" by Mozart, the Vatican's own "Advocata Nostra," featuring the voice of Pope Benedict XVI and surprisingly "Changes
" by American rapper Tupac Shakur. The list was put together by Father Giulio Neroni, artistic director of St Paul's Multimedia, a church publisher. It is not known if the Pope has listened to all of the songs.
This self-produced hit won the Best Single award at the 2010 Music Producers Guild Awards in London. In his acceptance speech, Bellamy thanked some of the producers the band worked with on earlier albums, including John Leckie, for "showing us how you do it."
Muse made their Grammy debut playing this song at the 2011 awards ceremony, where they were introduced by Lenny Kravitz. Perhaps inspired by the recent uprising in Egypt, their performance had an anarchy theme, with a bunch of guys simulating mayhem below the band as they played. Later in the ceremony, The Resistance won for Best Rock Album.
This spent a remarkable 17 at #1 on the Alternative Songs chart. In 2018, Billboard listed it as the top song of all time on that tally.