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Muse’s Matt Bellamy talks Iron Maiden influence: “We always had this love for ’80s metal”

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Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Muse‘s new album, Will of the People, features some of the band’s biggest and heaviest riffs, and the song “Kill or Be Killed” will compete for Best Metal Performance at next year’s Grammys. As frontman Matt Bellamy tells Classic Rock magazine, that kind of direction isn’t totally out of the blue.

“When we were growing up we were listening to bands like Iron Maiden,” Bellamy shares. “And though we connected more through Nirvana, Rage Against the Machine and The Smashing Pumpkins, we always had this love for ’80s metal.”

Bellamy feels that Maiden in particular “felt a bit more punk rock in ways” from other metal bands of the era.

“The [Maiden] song ‘Phantom of the Opera’ doesn’t feel as bloated or overtly classical as other metal songs,” Bellamy says. “There’s still something quite angry and scary about it. That’s why Maiden are a band we’ve always looked up to.”

Bellamy previously told Apple Music 1 that some of the heavier moments on Will of the People were inspired by his son’s love of Slipknot.

Will of the People, which also features the singles “Won’t Stand Down” and “Compliance,” dropped in August. Muse will launch a U.S. tour behind the album in February with support from Evanescence, as well as Highly Suspect on select dates.

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