I remember hearing about this emerging band Coldplay when I was living in London earlier last decade. The band had just put out a 5 song EP and even though people were making Radiohead comparisons this early, sounded nothing like I’ve heard before. Lush acoustic melodies, warm vocals, and simple yet complex arrangements. There is a reason why Coldplay is one of the biggest bands in the world.
Flash forward to 2011. Lead singer Chris Martin is married to a Hollywood superstar and named his baby after a fruit. And the music landscape has changed. No one really wants rock music anymore, or so record label execs think. So when I heard via Twitter that their new single “Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall” was a dance track, I was expecting some David Guetta* trainwreck. Thankfully, I was surprised.
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Get past the cheesy title and you have a rather simple arena-ready track. The synthesizers are present, but they don’t overwhelm the acoustics to the point that you think you’re in Ibiza. The vocals are rather staid for a Coldplay track–“I got the music up / I got my records on / I shut the world outside / Until the Lights come on”–but let’s face it, this track is designed for 20,000 people to sing simultaneously at Madison Square Garden. Coldplay’s introspective time period is long over.
U2 does this better and always will. Bono is that dude that has arena rock pumping through his veins. Coldplay’s rise to stardom is a more recent phenomenon and it shows. Not saying that this track is bad–it’s actually surprisingly good. But in the end this track seems more calculated an unauthentic than anything U2 would do.
Until then, I’m going to vibe out to some classic Coldplay. Have fun.
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*sidenote: I do not hate David Guetta. Actually, I love the dude and what he has done to bring EDM to America. Having that said, I hate it that artists are jumping on that electro bandwagon thinking it’s the gravy train to a quick buck.