IF YOU thought COLDPLAY were just purveyors of precision-tooled, arena-slaying big rock ballads, you ain’t heard nothing yet.
Their new Prospekt’s March EP, which I’m the only journalist on the planet to have heard, is their most wildly eclectic offering to date.
Thumping hip-hop jams, thundering metal workouts, Indian tablas and colliery brass bands all jostle for space on their brilliant, bold and, at times, bonkers eight-tracker.
I revealed back in August how the boys — frontman CHRIS MARTIN, GUY BERRYMAN, WILL CHAMPION and JONNY BUCKLAND — had recorded far more songs than they could fit on their most recent album Viva La Vida.
They have since collected the tracks together and will issue them later this month.
The EP kicks off in relatively conventional territory. Life In Technicolor ii is the opening instrumental from Viva La Vida with lyrics strapped on.
Chris intones ominously about the end of the world, over the familiar, euphoric music.
Glass Of Water, meanwhile, showcases a pulverisingly heavy and never previously heard side of the band.
It reminds me of MUSE at their most epic. Synths scream over thundering drum crashes and molten axe-riffage.
If only Chris still had his unruly mop of curls, they’d be perfect for him to head-bang along to this monster.
He howls about someone “spending their whole life living in the past, going nowhere fast”.
Echoes of BECK’s landmark hip-hop album Odelay are writ large through Rainy Day.
Chris confronts the pressures of life in the public eye while a funky Californian breakbeat and sweeping strings motor the track along.The title track is woozily psychedelic with guitars gently chiming and strings sweeping.
Chris asks: “Don’t you wish your life could be as simple as fish swimming round in a barrel when you’ve got the gun?”
Lost+ and Lovers In Japan (Osaka Sun mix) are both just moderately tweaked versions of tracks on Viva La Vida.
But it’s the final track, Now My Feet Won’t Touch The Ground, which is the most audacious thing the lads have ever recorded.
It begins in standard Coldplay ballad territory with delicate guitars and mysterious lyrics.
Chris sings: “Push my bones from the highest cliff to the seas below/Swoop down from the sky and catch me like a bird of prey.”
Then Indian finger drums and a swelling array of trumpets and tubas arrive to take the track off into an extraordinary place.
It’s brilliant. As is this EP.
It’s out on November 24, just five days before the lads hit the UK for their arena tour. Not to be missed.
Just found this review and it makes me incredibly excited for this song.