Posts Tagged ‘Coldplay’

The third studio release by Coldplay, X&Y, essentially catapulted the band to even more success after releasing the acclaimed A Rush of Blood to the Head. Consisting of material utilizing lead singer Chris Martin’s doubts, hopes, fears, and loves, the album ends up as an absolute charm.

The 13-track-long album uses sweeping guitar hooks as well as the occasional mesmerizing effects brought by the piano. Chris Martin’s vocals remain brilliant as well. A noticeable difference in this release from the band’s past efforts was the usage of the second person point of view in the lyrics.

Opening the hour-long album is Square One, a track that Martin has said to be as a ‘call to arms’ for the band. The band’s meditative side shows through What If, a track which lets one see the band ask lots of questions regarding life matters. Martin tries again to listen to his inner thoughts in White Shadows, a track which has a fantastic guitar sound.

The second single released, Fix You, shows off Martin’s romantic side. The track makes Martin look very sincere with some clever work done on the lyrics. No wonder Gwyneth Paltrow fell madly in love for this guy. Talk, which uses the main riff of German band Kraftwerk’s Computer Love, ends up as the album’s anthem albeit filled with loads of ironies with Martin asking people to feel better about themselves.

Speed of Sound, the first single released for this album, sports a heavy drum beat complemented with great success by the piano. Lyrically, the song is cryptic though its melody is really better as compared to the band’s previous singles such as Clocks. Meanwhile, Low has a tantalizing bassline which only helps the song increase its likability in the process. The track does not end up as a ‘low’ point, mind that.

The Hardest Part lets one see the band use the piano to great effect. It is a track that one can play repeatedly without feeling guilty from time and time again. The arrangement is actually very lovely and it did remind me of Michael Stipe’s renowned band, R.E.M. Martin admitted that the band was acknowledging the said band through the single. Again, this shows the band is not afraid to admit that their tracks have similarities to other much revered acts.

The album eventually gave me some idea on why Coldplay ends up being compared to both U2 and Radiohead. The band’s brilliant musicality totally shines in this release. No track ends up as an album filler. The tracks may be classified as humane – people can actually connect to the tracks with utmost reference to Martin’s emotions. The album does show though that in terms of ambition, Coldplay’s will get edged out by their Irish counterparts. However, there is no denying though that Coldplay effectively managed to make themselves even more accessible with this record. All the tracks are palatable to the tastes of the listening community. May the listener be a total purist or not, it does not matter. The band made sure the record is something versatile and can be liked by everyone. This, in turn, makes the record very accomplished and charming at the same time.

Best Track: Fix You
Other Recommend Tracks: TalkSpeed of SoundThe Hardest PartSquare OneWhat If, and White Shadows
Genre: Rock
Date Released: June 6, 2005
Label: Capitol Records/Parlophone Records

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The fourth Album Art of The Week goes to Coldplay’s Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends which is essentially a translation of ‘Long live life.’ The historical touch of the album art made me choose this one. Using Eugene Delacroix’ renowned Liberty Leading The People as its background, the album art simply looks fantastic.

The second Album Art of The Week goes to Coldplay’s Parachutes. It looks so simple yet perfectly shot. I basically had no idea why a globe was the subject of the art until I learned that the band actually took the shot themselves with a disposable Kodak camera. Simply an amazing album art and hopefully, I could do a review of this album soon.

The Reflective Inklings has dished out one short playlist (Gem‘s Valentine Playlist can be found HERE). This time around, it’s my turn to dish out my songs for my personal Valentine Playlist. Hopefully, you all enjoy reading!

#1 A Thousand Miles – Vanessa Carlton

From: Be Not Nobody

This track by Vanessa Carlton should definitely be included in people’s Valentine playlists. The piano arrangement is without a doubt, one of the best that I have ever heard. At first, A Thousand Miles sounds a little bit classical but once the intensity of the song rises, you know that it is really special.

#2 One – U2 and Mary J. Blige

From: The Breakthrough

The original version of the song which got released way back in 1992 is also actually great but this version with Mary J. Blige just lits up the place. Mary J. Blige on lead vocals and Bono doing the additional vocals just equates into a rock masterpiece. The lyrics are also great by the way.

#3 Bleeding Love – Leona Lewis

From: Spirit

Written by Jesse McCartney and Ryan Tedder, Bleeding Love became Leona Lewis’ shot into gaining lots of mainstream success and got it successfully. The emotionally-loaded track about people who get blinded by love in a relationship just sounds really exceptional. Leona’s vocals are absolutely top-notch, no matter how you look at her music.

#4 She Will Be Loved – Maroon 5

From: Songs About Jane

‘I don’t mind spending everyday! Out on your corner in the pouring rain.‘ Just the right piece of lyrics for someone who loves celebrating Valentine’s Day. The intro of the song just made me fall in love with the track and about the chorus, it’s really awesome.

#5 Starlight – Muse

From: Black Holes and Revelations

Starlight actually is the first song that I have heard from one of the greatest bands of the world. Hearing Matt Bellamy saying ‘My life, you electrify my life!‘definitely is one of the reasons why I decided to put this song into the Valentine playlist. The piano work done on the song is also sheer brilliance.

#6 Yellow – Coldplay

From: Parachutes

Chris Martin absolutely rocked it off in this one. The guitar work done in Yellow just sounds so relaxing. Yellow is one of Coldplay’s best tracks. Another plus is once played in repeating fashion, one can fall in love with the song totally.Yellow may be one of Coldplay’s early songs but it sure did give the band some hard-earned respect.

#7 Look What You’ve Done – Jet

From: Get Born

The Australian rockers’ third single makes it into the playlist. The piano arrangement on the song just adds a certain of mellowness into the track. Nic Cester’s vocals do sound good in Look What You’ve Done and is absolutely recommended for those who want to hear a rock ballad.

#8 Love Song – Sara Bareilles

From: Little Voice

The American songstress enters the playlist with Love Song, the first single released for her album Little Voice. The piano arrangement done by Sara Bareilles in this one just blew my mind away. The lines also are great like the line ‘I’m not gonna write you a love song ’cause you asked for it. ‘Cause you need one . . . ‘ The track definitely shows off Bareilles’ musical brilliance.

#9 Chasing Cars – Snow Patrol

From: Eyes Open

Snow Patrol’s Chasing Cars makes it into the Valentine playlist. Chasing Cars is not your typical explosive ballad but still sounds great as the melody of the song also is exceptional. Gary Lightbody’s vocal work is sheer brilliance and this made me like the song immediately after I heard it.

#10 Bad Romance – Lady GaGa

From: The Fame Monster

I initially did not even think of putting this song in the playlist. However, after thinking heavily, I just decided to put this one. Bad Romance just shows how Lady GaGa’s musicality has evolved. I do consider Bad Romance as one of GaGa’s best singles ever due to that irresistible hook.

#11 Electrical Storm – U2

From: The Best of 1990-2000

It may not have received lots of mainstream attention but Electrical Storm remains, at least in a personal level, one of U2′s best songs ever. As usual, The Edge’s chord work is stellar and he just makes it look like it’s really easy to do. For more on my thoughts regarding this track, please do check out my review by clicking the link: Electrical Storm Review

#12 Secret Valentine – We The Kings

From: We The Kings

Another rock record enters the playlist with Secret Valentine, released by the band out of Florida last year. This is one edgy record which can surely keep one energized with its heavy sound. Some may not like the track but I have got to say this- the track is surely a grower, no doubt.

#13 Best I Ever Had – Vertical Horizon

From: Everything You Want

What made me feel in awe for this track is the arrangement. Best I Ever Had (Grey Sky Morning) does not sound that heavy unlike some of the band’s released material like You’re A God. The track is definitely a keeper for those who really love rock ballads.

#14 Kiss Me – Sixpence None The Richer

From: Sixpence None The Richer

Leigh Nash’s vocals are really sweet. It just sounds so angelic, don’t you think? Anyway, Kiss Me, which got released in 1998, is one of the best songs that Sixpence None The Richer released. The chorus is pretty catchy and can effective induce the Last Song Syndrome (LSS).

#15 The Man Who Can’t Be Moved – The Script

From: The Script

The song about love being tried to be reclaimed makes it into the Valentine Playlist. Danny O’Donaghue’s vocals are really awesome. The song did give the Irish rock outfit some mainstream success which they definitely deserved.

#16 I Knew I Loved You – Savage Garden

From: Affirmation

Darren Hayes turned this song into a charm. ‘I knew I loved you before I met you.‘ It’s pretty ironic yet very effective at the same time in terms of conveying its message. No wonder why the song has been reportedly used a lot in weddings before.

#17 If This Is Love – The Saturdays

From: Chasing Lights

The bubbling synth action and scintillating chorus made this song as the best track in The Saturdays’ debut effort. If This Is Love really is an ‘enthusiastic’ track that just bursts off lots of energy. If This Is Love is simply an irresistible track.

#18 The Game of Love – Santana feat. Michelle Branch

From: Shaman

I thought back then that a collaboration featuring Santana and Michelle Branch just won’t work. However, it turns out that I was wrong big time as The Game of Love gained both commercial and critical success. As expected, the killer solo by Santana just blew my mind away.

#19 Lonely No More – Rob Thomas

From: …Something To Be

First and foremost, I would like to greet Rob Thomas a ‘Happy Birthday!’ Second, I do think this song gave Rob Thomas enough momentum for him to jumpstart his solo career. Third, I would like to say that if you are one Matchbox Twenty fan and simply love Rob Thomas’ vocals, you must listen to this one.

#20 Never Gonna Give You Up – Rick Astley

From: Whenever You Need Somebody

The song may be uber cheesy due to the lyrics but the techno beats present in the song made sure that the song is very refined. As I have said in my review (Click HERE to read it) of the song, the chorus may have been abused but overall, the song is simply a treat to the senses.

#21 Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic – The Police

From: Ghost In The Machine

The piano part in the song played by Jean Roussel made this song very gorgeous. Sting’s vocals are almost always great and the artistry of The Police just shines in the track. Tracks like Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic do indicate the immense creativity that the band had then.

#22 Wonderwall – Oasis

From: (What’s The Story) Morning Glory?

The American breakthrough song for the English rock outfit enters the playlist with their smash hit Wonderwall. It’s just sad to see the band disbanding because of some issues existing between the Gallagher brothers. Anyway, songs likeWonderwall made me like the band big time. I just hope that they get together. Heck, Tears For Fears got reunited and this made me believe that there is still hope.

#23 Far Away – Nickelback

From: All The Right Reasons

Described by vocalist Chad Kroeger as Nickelback’s ‘only real love song’, Far Away sounds indeed like it. It did surprise me when the band achieved massive success with the track. For the first time ever, the band had two top ten singles in the Hot 100 Billboard Charts thanks to Far Away‘s surprising success.

#24 Here Without You – 3 Doors Down

From: Away From The Sun

I still consider Here Without You as 3 Doors Down’s best hit that ever achieved mainstream success. Brad Arnold, vocalist of the band, actually said that the inspiration for the song was his now ex-wife. Pretty inspiring and sweet from the man e?

#25 Love Song For No One – John Mayer

From: Room For Squares

One of the first John Mayer material that I really loved. John Mayer definitely knows his stuff, no doubt. The way he was utilizing his guitar in his early years as a musician was just a pure treat to the hearing capabilities of the listeners.

#26 No One – Alicia Keys

From: As I Am

No One, which remains to be Alicia Keys’ biggest hit, is just a stunning pop record. Alicia Keys gives her all in this one and it clearly shows. Her voice is simply rich and soulful enough to make more successful releases in the future.

#27 Love Will Keep Us Alive – Eagles

From: Hell Freezes Over

Sung by bassist Timothy Schmitt, this song by the Eagles may not have been formally released as a single but it sure did capture the hearts of those people who just clamor for romantic material. When heard on the band’s live performances, you’ll end being amazed. Seriously.

#28 Drive – Incubus

From: Make Yourself

One of the best Incubus songs that I have ever heard. This is what I will constantly say about Drive which was released by the band in December 2000. What made this song so ace is the very great chorus. And come to think of it, Brandon Boyd’s artistry just shined big time in this one as well as the band’s.

#29 If You Leave Me Now – Chicago

From: Chicago X

Peter Cetera, then with Chicago as the bassist, sung this track and eventually became the group’s first number one hit. The arrangement of the track complemented the song very well and Cetera’s vocals just did not bore me at all.

#30 True – Spandau Ballet

From: True

What made this song a killer is the intro (the ‘huh-huh-huhs’ to be exact). It’s a great slow love ballad that has been the band’s most remembered song in the U.S. The instruments used in the song created a very charming sound which gets some strong emphasis in the song’s middle parts. Simply amazing.

#31 Everything – Michael Buble

From: Call Me Irresponsible

The guitar-driven track remains as one of Buble’s tracks that I really love. His musicality is just marvelous. I have got to admit that the track did surprise me considering how he sings in most of his songs. He may have changed his style a little bit in this track but come on, it worked so no worries.

#32 For You – The Calling

From: Daredevil: The Album

One of two movie soundtrack-associated tracks that gets into the playlist is For You. The orchestra-like sound in the track makes the track really great, you have got to say. Add Alex Band’s unique vocals and you got yourselves one of rock’s great love ballads.

#33 Love Song – 311

From: 50 First Dates Soundtrack

A fantastic cover of the song that originally came from The Cure appears into the playlist. The chord work done on the track is amazing. 311 definitely gave justice to the original with their superb effort. And a side note: 50 First Dates is actually a great movie. Just saying.

#34 Mandy – Barry Manilow

From: Barry Manilow II

The ballad by Barry Manilow eventually became his first number one hit on the Billboard Hot 100 Charts. It’s something that romantic people will love. It’s slow and smooth enough for romantic evenings. No wonder it’s impact is still being felt today whenever the ‘Love Month’ arrives.

#35 All You Need Is Love – The Beatles

Ranked 362nd by Rolling Stone in the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time

One of The Beatles’ hits that I truly loved. Tracks like this are a reason why The Beatles have become a major staple in the music industry. The track definitely remains as one of music’s most revolutionary singles, no doubt.

This ends the long Valentine Playlist of yours truly. Comments are appreciated.

The banner image was made by my friend, Kristine. Thank you so much Pards!

Part III of my Year-End Countdown is the last part wherein the songs are NOT RANKED ACCORDINGLY. Again, I apologize for putting One Time by Justin Bieber a rank higher than Miley Cyrus’ Party In The U.S.A. Still, I would like to reiterate that songs from #75-41 are NOT RANKED ACCORDINGLY. Comments will be appreciated wholeheartedly. The real fun starts on song #40. Just stay tuned for that.
#50 Her Diamonds – Rob Thomas
From: Cradlesong
The Matchbox Twenty frontman has released his second solo album Cradlesong with Her Diamonds being the first single released for it. Thomas actually sounds great as a solo artist. Her Diamonds sounds as great as Thomas’ previous singles Lonely No More and This Is How A Heart Breaks. The song which tells about Thomas’ wife’s battle with an auto-immune disease got in this countdown all because of the chorus. Absolutely stunning in my opinion.
#49 Black Heart Inertia – Incubus
From: Monuments and Melodies
Incubus manages to enter the countdown with Black Heart Inertia, the first of two new singles out of the band’s compilation album Monuments and Melodies. The song can be described as guitar-heavy and boy, Brandon Boyd’s vocals have remained great throughout the years.
#48 Life In Technicolor II – Coldplay
From: Prospekt’s March
The Grammy-nominated Life In Technicolor II enters the countdown at number 48. For those who do not know, the instrumental version (Life In Technicolor) appeared in the album Viva La Vida, one of the best albums of all time in my opinion. Anyway, I think thatLife In Technicolor II is one heckuva rock single. The usage of the santoor in the intro is absolutely gold. Great work yet again from Coldplay in my opinion.
#47 21 Guns – Green Day
From: 21st Century Breakdown
One, twenty one guns! Lay down your arms, give up the fight.” Once I heard this line, I knew this Green Day has just hit the target. Essentially, 21 Guns is one song from 21st Century Breakdown that I really like. The song is downright anthemic which makes it particularly strong.
#46 Waking Up In Vegas – Katy Perry
From: One of the Boys
This song just helped the Pop genre gain back some respect in my opinion. Alongside Lady GaGa, Katy Perry has helped the Pop genre big time this year and this song is one proof.Waking Up In Vegas remains as Perry’s most energetic song and for some reason, the song reminds me of the line “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”
#45 I Gotta Feeling – Black Eyed Peas
From: The E.N.D.
The overplayed I Gotta Feeling makes it at number 45. The David Guetta-produced track is actually sick. With an infectious beat accompanying its fun lyrics, I Gotta Feelingeventually ended up as one of music’s best party songs this year. The over-usage of the dreaded Auto-tune is a huge downside though.
#44 Somebody To Love – Glee Cast
From: Glee: The Music, Volume 1
The Queen classic got the Glee treatment in its 5th episode entitled The Rhodes Not Taken. In my opinion, the Glee cover of the Queen classic is terrific and simply inspiring. Lea Michele continues to shine thanks to the TV series. However, I just can’t help but notice that the Auto-Tune is being abused on Cory Monteith. Come on, let the guy sing!
#43 Don’t Trust Me – 3OH!3
From: Want
3OH!3 entered the mainstream scene with Don’t Trust Me, their second studio album.Don’t Trust Me shines greatly through its chorus – very catchy and can induce the Last Song Syndrome (LSS) as well. The lyrics may turn off some people but I think the lyrics are actually good.
#42 New Perspective – Panic! At The Disco
From: Jennifer’s Body: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
After the departures of Ryan Ross and Jon Walker, Brendon Urie and Spencer Smith were the only members left of the band Panic! At The Disco. I actually thought that P!ATD was over. Suddenly, I heard news that this single was released. Way to go to prove me wrong! The single really sounds great and it may just prove enough that Urie and Smith can really do their thing even if it is just the two of them left.
#41 She Wolf – Shakira
From: She Wolf
The Colombian singer-songwriter Shakira returned with a bang this year with She Wolf. On first listen, I did not really like the single but after a listen, I just appreciated it. The track sounds very disco and sexy at the same time and the chorus is actually brilliant

After releasing the acclaimed Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends, the busy guys of Coldplay decided to release Prospekt’s March, an EP consisting of songs that the band considered to be not too polished enough to be included in Viva La VidaProspekt’s March includes 8 tracks all in all – two remixes of tracks that were included in Viva La Vida (The Osaka Sun Mix of Lovers In Japan and Lost+, another version of Lost!, which features Jay-Z rapping three verses of the song.)

Prospekt’s March begins with the track Life In Technicolor II, a continuation of Life In Technicolor which is included in the Viva La Vida album. Life In Technicolor II uses the same arrangement of its predecessor. The difference, however, lies in the fact that it now has some lyrics included. Chris Martin shines excellently through the chorus. “Oh love, don’t let me go! Won’t you take me where the street lights glow?,” said the chorus of the song. What makes the chorus great is that one can clearly see how genius Chris Martin is with his lyrics.

Lost+ features Jay-Z, a good friend of Martin. The song remains unchanged until Jay-Z comes in rapping three verses. Nothing outstanding in the eyes of this reviewer though. “Why fix something that ain’t broke?,” as the saying goes.

The EP also has one instrumental track in the name of Postcards From Far AwayPostcards From Far Away is a short piano instrumental with a total length of only 48 seconds. Despite this, the instrumental is good but it is not really great.

Lovers In Japan (Osaka Sun Remix) is nothing spectacular yet it remains as a decent effort. Rainy Day shines in the EP due to its funky arrangement. Glass of Water lets one see Coldplay in a different light. The arrangement in the said song is somehow heavy. More emphasis on the guitars can be seen in the song. Also, the drums are more intense in the song. The title track, Prospekt’s March, has an atmospheric and serene feeling in it. Not a mind-blowing song but still good enough. Now My Feet Can’t Touch The Ground sounds more acoustic than the rest of the tracks included in the EP.

Prospekt’s March is good but not exactly spectacular. It has a good set of B-sides that can be appreciated by anyone especially the Coldplay fan. Stand-out tracks would be Life In Technicolor IIRainy Day, and Glass of Water. The EP is a can’t miss for Coldplay fans. For new listeners though, try listening to Viva La Vida or X&Y first.

Genre: Rock
Date Released: November 21, 2008
Label: Parlophone Records

An album that certainly continues to amaze me. This album, Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends, is Coldplay’s fourth. It may be short in terms of album length but those 45 minutes are worth it. The album, by far, has been Coldplay’s best and it is better than X&Y.

All the songs are really good. However, if you really want to know what track is somehow mediocre, I would say it would be “Yes”. That quibble aside, I still find the tracks very satisfying and very entertaining.

I can say that it is absolutely better than X&Y well because the tracks are more enjoyable and the songs absolutely can build a connection with its listener.

The opening track, “Life In Technicolor”, really set the tone of the album. One can feel relaxed while listening to the album. Yes, it is that great.

Best track for me would be the controversial “Viva La Vida”. The intro of the song just got me hooked big time. Another good track is that of “Death And All His Friends.” The piano and the latter part of the song really is just so awesome.

Chris Martin may have had did some lower register work in the vocals department but it honestly worked.

There must be a reason on why this album gained so much awards and I think I know why. For one, the album just gives joy to every listener. The album just grows on you and in the end, you end up appreciating it as well. Second, the melodies and harmonies are just top notch. “Viva La Vida” is just so special – especially the arrangements done by the band. And last, Coldplay’s experimentation absolutely was fantastic. You can’t help but laud this band for taking a risk and it obviously paid off for them. Kudos!

In the end, the album really is a classic. This is definitely deserving to be an “Album of the Year” awardee. It’s tracks are absolutely gorgeous and yes, no matter how controversial it may be, it is worth listening to.

Genre: Rock
Date Released: June 11, 2008
Label: Parlophone Records