Enjoyed reading your posts; glad you had a good time! I think that life-on-tour must be sort of comprehensively surreal. Between the prime meridian crossings, circadian rhythm shifts, the swift, immediate interactions during and surrounding a show along with all that concert performance intensity, and swings between being able to sleep and not and trying to remember what day it is and where you are... it must be beyond wilding!
Coldplay 3/3/2009 @ Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne - Review
I once had someone say to me that Coldplay were the ‘musical equivalent of a runny nose’. If that was the Coldplay that turned up to Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, on March the 3rd, 2009, they were certainly no runny noses.
A massive improvement from the terrific Twisted Logic Tour, Chris, Will, Jonny and Guy performed a fantastic arrangement of songs from all four of their albums.
The concert opened up with Strauss’ “The Blue Danube” – “I feel like I’m at Andre Rieu” – before the house lights faded and the band ran on, waving sparklers, as “Life In Technicolor” began playing.
Immediately after was “Violet Hill”, which sounded heaps better live compared to in the studio. In my opinion, playing LIT and VH first up was the best possible way of opening. I just knew it was going to be one hell of an amazing night.
“Clocks”, “In My Place” and “Yellow”, three of Coldplay’s classics, came next, which really got the crowd going, especially my friend, Emily, and I.
In between IMP & Y, Chris got the crowd to do a cheering contest. Seeing as Emily and I were seated stage left, Guy was our leader and upon raising his hand, the whole left hand side cheered. In the end, Chris said the people sitting stage right, Jonny's group, were the winners.
After “Yellow”, in which the crowd was bombarded with confetti-filled yellow balloons, came my highlight of the night – “Cemeteries Of London”. This is one of my favourite songs off their latest album and I’d read other recent reviews to find that it kept making it’s way in and out of setlists. All I can say is that I was thrilled to hear it played and it sounded much ‘spookier’ live, probably because of Jonny's guitar work and Will's drums.
“Chinese Sleep Chant” followed and as it turned out, this was the only time Coldplay played it whilst they were in Melbourne (“Glass Of Water” replaced it the other two nights, which I was a tad jealous of). Therefore, we all witnessed a bit of Coldplay history, so to speak.
Next up was “42”, which, to my surprise, sounded terrific live. Two elements that contributed to this fact was Jonny's guitar playing and Chris' changing from piano to acoustic guitar half way through.
“Fix You”, always a crowd favourite, was next and I must say it was kind of weird hearing it in the middle of the setlist as I’ve always thought of it to be an encore song. Nonetheless, the boys put in a spiring performance of the song and Chris was very pleased with the crowd's singing – “That's going to take some beating".
“Strawberry Swing” was next. Emily went absolutely nuts as this was her favourite song off their latest album. Like the studio version, it was a relaxing song to chill out to.
The B-stage techno remixes of “God Put A Smile Upon Your Face” and “Talk” followed. Emily and I were seated three rows it from stage left. Therefore, we had some of the best seats in the house for this part of the show. Chris played GPASUYF with a Fender Telecaster, not always his main choice of guitar, which I thought sounded really well.
Afterwards, Guy, Jonny and Will left the stage, leaving Chris to treat us to a lovely piano solo rendition of “The Hardest Part”, which was apparently left out of “Shane Warne – The Musical".
After performing “Postcards From Far Away”, which was accompanied by some more haunting guitar work from Jonny (who was back on the main stage), Chris burst back to the main stage as the band erupted into “Viva La Vida” and then “Lost!”. As I expected, these two songs were performed superbly.
Upon leaving the stage, the boys headed up to the back of the arena to play a few songs acoustically. “Speed Of Sound” was first. I was hoping they would play this normally (electric guitars, bass, etc.) but I was quite surprised to find that the acoustic version sounded just as good. “Green Eyes” was played next and then “Death Will Never Conquer”, with Will on vocals. I never knew Will had such good vocals.
A remix of “Viva La Vida” was played over the loudspeaker as the band headed back to the stage before they exploded into “Politik”, which has always been the song they perform best live, in my opinion, and tonight was no exception. The outro to the song was probably one of the best renditions I've heard yet.
The keyboard-driven “Lovers In Japan” followed, in which paper butterflies rained down upon the crowd and it was fantastic to see everyone around us standing up and dancing along to what is a truly magnificent song. I went in expecting this song to be amazing and it most certainly was.
“Death And All His Friends”, the new “Fix You”, finished off the main setlist, which, like “42”, was surprisingly good live, aided again by Jonny's sensational 'Edge-like' guitar work.
It was sad now to think that the show was over as the boys thanked and bowed to the crowd and left the stage. However, all was not done just yet.
Dressed in their colourful Beatles-like jackets, the boys came back on and dished out a stirring rendition of the always-popular “The Scientist”, amidst all the butterfly confetti from “Lovers In Japan”. To eventually finish off proceedings, one of the latest additions to my favourites list, “Life In Technicolor ii”, was played. Emily and I both got up and sang along to it - "Still it's such a beautiful night"- how appropriate! All I can say is, it was a fantastic way to finish off the night.
In all, the concert was one of the most amazing things I have ever seen. The songs were performed great and the theatrics used throughout were dazzlingly spectacular. As for the band itself, Chris, Will, Jonny and Guy gave the city of Melbourne a good showing of how much they have improved as musicians as well as performers.
CONCERT RATING- 5/5
PS- I got some great videos – “Chinese Sleep Chant”, “Lost!” (partial), “Speed Of Sound” (partial) and “Politik” (outro) – which I shall upload onto YouTube shortly.