Coldplay: I know it ain’t cool, but I like them. Coldplay recently played the Verizon Center in D.C. and is due to return again for another show on Halloween. While I know it’s not exactly “cool” to admit, I think Coldplay is pretty good. Coldplay’s stock in hip circles has plummeted considerably since Chris Martin’s nuptials to Gwyneth Paltrow. The same sort of thing happened to Dave Pirner of Soul Asylum when he was shacked up with Winona Ryder. Nonetheless, before and after Martin married Paltrow and started naming his kids after still life fruit and sea parting Charlton Heston roles, Coldplay was, and still is, a solid group of musicians.
Coldplay’s latest release Viva La Vida, although a bit depressing, is a good listen. Martin gives the falsetto a break and delivers some decent performances in his lower register. The songs are dynamic and original. Despite the constant U2 comparisons, I believe Coldplay stands on its own as an original band. However, Coldplay has employed former U2 producer, Brian Eno for this effort, reminiscent of U2’s Unforgettable Fire CD released in the mid 1980’s. I seem to recall Eno over producing that album, making it difficult for U2 to duplicate the album’s sound live. I hope Coldplay doesn’t fall into the same trap.
I am particularly found of the tracks “Cemeteries of London” and “42.” “Violet Hill”, which has received a majority of the CD’s commercial airplay, is also a solid tune. Viva La Vida is definitely not a toe tapper. It is actually best enjoyed in dim lighting. I often use it to accompany my afternoon nap. I do wake up refreshed, so I guess that’s saying something. I’m just not sure what.