If you are a piano player, enjoy playing rock music, and still haven’t learned how to play Muse songs on the piano, you are missing out on a lot!
Muse songs are absolute gems for pianists, as most Muse songs are heavily piano-based. If you are familiar with the band you may already know that lead vocalist Matt Bellamy is an incredible pianist despite being self-taught
However, Muse songs are greatly varying in difficulty. For example, while the song “Con-science” consists of only 4 single notes, “Butterfly and Hurricanes” solo is influenced by Rachmaninoff and is one of the most difficult piano solos in rock music.
Best Muse Piano Songbooks – Quick Overview[wptb id=3817]
In fact, you will be surprised by the number of Muse songs that are influenced by classical music, especially by romantic composers such as Rachmaninoff or Lizst.
Without further ado, let’s look at the 23 Muse songs on the piano. Beginner or an advanced pianist, there is a Muse song for any skill level on this list!
“Con-science” is one of the earliest Muse songs from 1999 that was never performed live.
It is safe to say that “Con-science” is the easiest Muse song to play on the piano, as the whole song literally consists of only four notes that are repeated all the way.
Although other instruments start to join after the second verse, the piano part always stays the same. All you have to do is to successively repeat the notes of G, C, B♭ , and A. You can even play this song with only one hand!
“Resistance” is another easy Muse song that you can play only with one hand. The song features a very basic and famous piano riff that is repeated before the verses and after the chorus.
Matt revealed that the lyrics were based on the relationship between Winston and Julia, who are two main characters in the book “1984” by George Orwell. The song presents love as a political act for freedom.
Although the original piano part in the song could be easily played with one hand, you might want to play the accompaniment as well with-left hand or play the entire song as a cover. You can find the sheet music of a nice piano arrangement of the song below.
“Explorers” is one of my favorite Muse songs to play on the piano. It’s really easy to play, which allows me to comfortably sing along and I absolutely love singing this song! Singing it is not difficult either.
The piano accompaniment of the song is quite similar to Rachmaninov’s “Piano Concerto No. 2 Op. 18”. It is one of the many Muse piano songs that has classical music influences.
The song is made up of mostly easy arpeggios. It’s a great song to learn for beginners who are trying to improve their arpeggio technique. Towards the middle of the song, the accompaniment style shifts from arpeggios to a rhythmic style where you rhythmically press chords with both hands.
Overall, I think “Explorers” is one of the greatest rock songs to learn on the piano because it has an incredible melody. Give it a try!
Exogenesis: Symphony Part III (Redemption)
“Redemption” is the third and last movement of the iconic three-movement symphony by Muse, “Exogenesis”. It is one of the most interesting tracks of Muse that is purely based on classical music.
However, its musical style is not the only thing that makes this symphony so interesting. I also find the concept of the song quite bizarre as it is about a dystopian future of humanity.
The song features an orchestra of 40 classical musicians. Matt told in an interview that Pink Floyd, Rachmaninov, Chopin, and Richard Strauss were the main influences for the song.
Despite a classical track, “Exogenesis Part 3 (Redemption)” is pretty easy to play. It’s also a great song for practicing finger technique, two-hand coordination, and timing at the same time. It’s also slow in tempo, so I highly recommend that you learn this song if you are a Muse fan and a beginner pianist!
One of the famous songs of the band, “New Born” is a rather experimental track from the album “Origin of Symmetry”. Matt Bellamy defined the songs as being about the fear of technology and how it actually destroys humanity.
Despite sounding hard, “New Born” is a pretty simple song to play. What makes it sound difficult is a special technique that Matt uses, which is cycling through the notes on each chord and alternating directions on both hands.
You only need to practice the chords and patterns. Once you get the hang of it, it’s not difficult to play.
The song starts at a fast tempo with arpeggios, and the pace increases during each verse, so I recommend that you practice the song slowly at first to get the timing and emphasis right.
Overall, learning “New Born” on the piano is a really good exercise for speed and coordination. I think it’s one of the best Muse piano songs to play.
“Starlight” is a song that most people will recognize when you play it. It’s a really lovely song about missing someone, family, or friends. The song was inspired by the Strokes, and the band tried to keep the structure and melody as simple as possible to make it sound catchy.
My favorite part to play in this song is definitely the left-hand accompaniment. Playing that pattern is just so uplifting that I highly recommend that you give it a try!
It’s one of the easiest Muse songs to play on the piano that I’m sure will put a smile on your face.
Released as a single from the album “Drones”, “Mercy” tells the story of a protagonist who is aware that he is being abused and used by some dark forces.
Similar to “Starlight”, “Mercy” also has a pretty simple melody that you will pick up quickly. The right-hand needs to play octaves. If you are a beginner and not ready to start playing octaves yet, you can just play the melody without pressing octaves as it will not make a huge difference.
Even if you are not a Muse fan, you might still recognize this song from “World War Z“. The different versions of “Isolated System” have been featured several times in the movie.
It’s also one of the three Muse songs in which there is a female voice. The song features no vocals with the piano being the main instrument for the entire song.
Playing this song is fairly simple as it’s quite repetitive. Once you learn the main piano riff, you basically repeat it with alternating movements until the end.
However, I highly recommend that you practice it slowly with a metronome as the coordination of two hands might be a bit tricky for beginners.
The official song of the London 2012 Olympics, “Survival” is about having a strong urge to win despite all odds and having a solid determination to succeed.
If you have listened to the song before, you might have already realized that it is heavily Queen-influenced. I mean, when I first listened to “Survival” I thought I mistakenly played Killer Queen or Bohemian Rhapsody.
Queen and Muse are my two favorite rock bands so I remember getting really excited about recognizing this similarity!
Related: Top 6 Queen Songs To Play On Piano
Other than being a really easy song to play, Survival is one of the most fun songs to play on the piano, I think. Playing the chord progression over and over is really fun and uplifting.
“Survival” is not a difficult song, and even that bada-bada walkup in the left hand is quite doable for any skill level. It’s also a great song for practicing rhythmic staccato playing.
“The Gallery” is from the compilation album “Hullabaloo Soundtrack”. This song is not that famous but I really like that repetitive piano riff, and I think it’s a fantastic song.
Unfortunately, nobody seems to have made a piano arrangement for this song, but you can learn it by ear as the piano part is quite repetitive and rather simple to pick up by ear.
A 10-minute progressive rock track, “The Globalist” is the longest song Muse has ever recorded. It tells the story of someone feeling lost and lonely. Instead of going through an internal journey to reach love, this person chooses to spread the evil and destructive power he feels inside to deal with his negativity and eventually becomes a dictator.
One thing to keep in mind that, unlike other songs, this track is not entirely piano-based as the piano enters only after 6.30. The piano solo in the last part is really beautiful though, so I think waiting for it for the 6 minutes is totally worth it haha!
Similar to Survival, the piano part here is again reminiscent of Queen songs. I would say it is not a very simple song for beginners, but an intermediate player can play it with ease.
The Void Acoustic
“The Void” is originally a song with synthesizers, without featuring piano. The acoustic version, however, features only solo piano with vocals, and I think the acoustic version has turned this song into a really nice piano ballad. This version is included in the album “Simulation Theory” along with the original version.
The song is about being lost while witnessing the disappearance of the planet.
It’s a relatively easy song that any intermediate player can quickly learn. It’s dominated by broken chords, but they are not hard. If you are a beginner and can already play with both hands, I think you can try to learn it as it can be a good arpeggio exercise.
I Belong to You
“I Belong to You” is another Muse song that is overtly influenced by classical music. The middle section of the song is taken from the aria named “Mon Coeur S’ouvre à Ta Voix” from Camille Saint-Saens’ opera “Samson and Delilah”. Matt even sings that part in French to stay totally true to the original.
A different version of this song was featured in “New Moon”, the second movie in the Twilight Saga.
It is one of the Muse songs that may be challenging for a beginner to learn, especially the middle part where there is lots of hopping around different octaves.
The first and last movements are relatively easier, though you still need to be good at playing octaves. If you are an intermediate player I highly recommend that you learn this song because it’s really fun but also a very good exercise for the technique.
It has diverse parts with different characters, and it makes playing this song so much more enjoyable.
A song about religious fanatics, “Apocalypse Please” was initially recorded with an orchestral backing. However, the band later thought the orchestra was “too much”, so they decided to remove it. I still wonder how amazing this song would sound with a big orchestra, though I do think this version is fantastic!
“Apocalypse Please” features a loud piano, along with synthesizers and bass. The piano part is quite prominent and aggressive, so the song needs to be played loud and forcefully.
Except for the arpeggios after the chorus, this song is not that difficult to play. I think an early-intermediate won’t have any problem with those parts, and I must say it’s really fun to bang those chords on the piano.
Also, it’s a quite repetitive song. Once you learn the 1-2 pages of it, there’s nothing new. The only part that may be challenging for the beginners is the arpeggios after the chorus. You should definitely practice that part slowly with a metronome until you are able to play those arpeggios smoothly.
Ruled by Secrecy
This song takes its name from Jim Marrs’ book “Ruled by Secrecy”, which is about a conspiracy theory of how the world is ruled by some secret societies.
I love everything about this song, and I think it’s such a masterpiece. The song has an eerie atmosphere and dark lyrics and builds slowly over the course of the whole song to a huge explosion of sound at the end. This build-up is really subtle though, which is fantastic. The piano solo at the end is just epic.
“Ruled by Secrecy” is not exactly a song for beginners, and you can even hear at 3.19 Matt Bellamy’s very subtle mistake while playing the piano solo. There are some difficult stretches and movements that have to be performed at a relatively fast tempo. However, except for the piano solo, I would say it’s not that hard, and entirely doable for beginners with consistent practice.
It’s a really helpful song for two-handed coordination. Also, if you are looking for a song that gives you a bit of practice in using all fingers and increasing their agility, learning “Ruled By Secrecy” will be quite helpful for beginners.
One of the early songs of Muse, “Sunburn” is about transitioning to a new world and realizing that it’s not what you expected it to be.
Matt initially wanted to perform this song live with piano, but he couldn’t learn how to play this song properly for about a year. Only after a year of practicing, the live performances of the song included Matt playing the piano, so it’s not a very easy song 🙂
But, it’s not too difficult either, and except for the ending part which is a bit tough, I would say it’s entirely playable for beginners.
“Sunburn” is a great song for increasing your speed and coordination. It’s also really good for practicing chord changes. I recommend learning it at a relatively slow tempo in the beginning just to get used to the fingering and chords, and then gradually working it up to the original tempo.
United States Of Eurasia (+Collateral Damage)
One of the Most interesting Muse songs with piano, “United States of Eurasia” draws influence from the viewpoint that the Eurasian continent should be controlled by the USA to control the oil reserves. It is also based on George Orwell’s famous book 1984.
It has diverse musical influences as well. The opening piano part is reminiscent of Christina Aquilera’s “Beautiful”, while the falsetto vocals and piano-accompaniment style resemble the “Bohemian Rhapsody”. Its final part, the “Collateral Damage”, accompanied by the sounds of children’s laughs and jet fighters, is a slightly altered version of Chopin’s “Nocturne Op.9 No.2 in Eb”.
If you are a beginner, I believe you should stay away from this song for now until you are comfortable with playing trills, octaves, and chromatic scales relatively fast. The beginning part is not that difficult where you only need to play a simple chord accompaniment pattern. 1.36 is where it gets tricky with the eastern-influenced octave solo. Attempting to play it without having a solid octave technique might cause an injury so please beware.
I believe it is a perfect song to learn for intermediate and advanced players as it features both rock and classical piano styles. As a classical and a rock pianist myself, no other song can satisfy me as much as Muse songs like this one do 😃
As I mentioned, the final part is Chopin’s “Nocturne in Eb”, so classical pianists might be already familiar with it. Once you learn the final Chopin part, the rest of the song is not hard, only needs a bit of practice.
“Hoodoo” is a fantastic song that features a soft Spanish-style electric guitar and a bold romantic piano in the middle. Since this song is not entirely piano-based, it might be fun to play it as a duet with a guitarist friend.
Related: 23 Best Guitar and Piano Duets
Another classically influenced Muse song, the romantic piano part in the middle is reminiscent of Tchaikovsky’s “Piano Concerto No 1. Op. 23 – 1. Allegro Non-Troppo E Molto Maestoso”.
Although the studio version features the piano only in the middle, Matt performed it entirely with the piano at Wembley Stadium, and most tutorials on Youtube teach this song based on the live version. You can play whichever version you want as it’s a fantastic song anyway.
The middle romantic piano part sounds quite majestic, so you should play it really confidently and fortissimo to convey that feeling there.
Neutron Star Collision
The lead track from the soundtrack album of “Twilight Saga: Eclipse”, “Neutron Star Collision” was written by Matt Bellamy following his break-up with a girlfriend.
This song is notable for its solo piano outro, which the band first used as an intro to Sunburn but later found more suitable for this song.
The song starts relatively easy but then gets gradually harder, reaching a peak at the outro. Playing the final part really makes you feel like a dramatic pianist, as most Muse piano songs do.
One of the hardest Muse songs to play on the piano, “Space Dementia” refers to a fictional mental disorder that astronauts experience while in space. Astronauts with space dementia suffer from feelings of insignificance, insecurity, and awareness of isolation from the human race.
If you are a beginner, attempting to learn this song might lead you to suffer as well. It’s a really tough one for a beginner, and even intermediate players can suffer with it as it requires a lot of practice and proper piano technique.
The Rachmaninov-influenced song starts with a simple piano introduction, though keeping the accurate timing there is a bit tricky. However, the intro part is still pretty easy compared to the rest of the song.
The verses feature fast arpeggios from left to right and big left-hand movements, and it takes a bit of practice to play them smoothly. Make sure to have comfortable fingering for each part of the verses.
The most difficult part is the chorus where each hand is independently doing a different movement. I think the best strategy for the chorus is to memorize the right hand so that you can keep an eye on the left hand, as I assume playing the left hand without looking is much more difficult for most people.
Butterflies and Hurricanes
I know that Muse has a lot of brilliant songs, and I actually adore them all, but I’d put this masterpiece in my top three. The band defined the song as being about hope and seeking to find the strength to overcome obstacles.
With its dramatic and giant chords, it’s one of the most heavily classical-influenced Muse songs on piano. Like most Muse songs with piano, it is assumed to be influenced by Rachmaninov.
The romantic piano interlude is mind-blowing, and the perfectly subtle transition from the first section to the interlude gives me chills every time I hear it.
If you can read sheet music, I strongly suggest that you get the sheet music for these hard Muse songs as there is so much going on in the piano parts. You are likely to miss certain notes if you only rely on Youtube tutorials to learn.
Exogenesis: Symphony Part II (Cross-pollination)
“Cross-pollination” is the second part of the legendary Muse symphony, “Exogenesis”. Unlike the third part which is quite simple, the second section is so hard that Matt never played it live due to his fear of messing it up.
This track combines some of the most advanced piano techniques, and you can clearly hear the mix of Rachmaninoff and Chopin’s influences if you are familiar with classical music.
However, not all the parts of the song are in the same difficulty level, the introduction and ending parts being the hardest. The middle part where the lyrics start is much easier to play as it’s a simple waltz-style accompaniment.
“Exogenesis” is the second hardest Muse song to play on the piano. If you decide to learn it, make sure that you have sheet music to learn from. The harder the songs get, the riskier it becomes to learn them by ear because your ears may not be as reliable as a proper sheet music arrangement.
The most technically advanced Muse piano song, “Piano Thing” well deserves to sit at the top of this list. It’s the hardest Muse song which is actually a solo piano improvisation by Matt Bellamy. I doubt that he remembers what he improvised and can ever play it again.
As expected, this song was never performed live.
Besides being an exceptional piano piece, what “Piano Thing” does, in my opinion, is to show the uniqueness of Matt Bellamy as a pianist. Looking at it through the eyes of a classically trained pianist of ten years, and knowing what features make a song difficult, I’d say that “Piano Thing” doesn’t come close to a piece by Lizst or Chopin in terms of difficulty.
Matt, however, knows his limits as a pianist really well, and he’s very good at making a piece sound difficult. “Piano Thing” is nothing more than a series of arpeggiated chords and a few scales arranged together over a beautiful chord progression, yet it sounds incredibly impressive and challenging.
This is not to say, however, that beginners should attempt to play it. It is the hardest Muse piano song anyway, but my point is that it is not as hard as it sounds.
For the brave folks out there, I’ve found free sheet music for this one, so you might give it a try if you are up for a challenge haha!
These were the list of 23 best Muse songs on piano!
Which one of Muse piano songs is your favorite? Which one are you planning to learn?
Let me know in the comments!