January 21, 2006

The Best of 2005: #5

#5: Coldplay - X&Y
After releasing 2 Grammy award winning Album of the Year records, the expectations were high to say the least for their latest attempt X&Y. My least favorite of the three, X&Y is still a favorite of 2005, so that must be saying something about this incredible band. One thing I can say about every Coldplay album is it takes some time for the record to really settle and sink in. Once it does, you'll be surprised at how much you can get into their songs. This album didn't sink in until I went to see the band at Darien Lake in September. It was only after going to the best concert I've ever seen that I really got into this album. Though the first single "Speed of Sound" was super weak, the following two "Fix You" and "Talk" were some of the best songs on the album. "Till Kingdom Comes" is the meaningful hidden track on the album and was written for Johnny Cash. The new songs have a fresh sound, though I'd hardly call it experimental. Though not as original as "Parachutes" or "Rush of Blood to the Head", the band still has that clever basic sound that is easy to sing along with. Although I've heard and hate this comparison, Coldplay really is the U2 of our generation. The bands global recognition has literally lifted them into stardom. Lead singers marrying movie stars, extending their sold out tour dates, this band is making a name for themselves in a huge way. X&Y has what it takes to be a good Coldplay album. As much as I love it, I think I was hoping with all the time the band took to make it that it would have something a little different from their previous work. Maybe a song or two that is so out there nobody would have been able to guess it was Coldplay. I know this review sounds like a hate piece, but I only criticize because I love this band so much and I don't want them to bury this great thing they have going for them in the ground. The next album better have some spunk, or they're going to go through the same thing bands like Dave Matthews Band and NIN did when they went that next step forward. They held onto that familiar sound for so long that when they changed up their style they lost that special thing they had in their music. Change it up at just the right time. Bands like Radiohead, Incubus, Ani Difranco, Beck, Smashing Pumpkins, Ben Harper, and The White Stripes have pulled off the change. It doesn't need to be a complete 180ยบ, just something to excite the fans and remind them why they love you. I only hope Coldplay doesn't hold onto this for too long. Learn from the past, don't make the same mistake that so many other great bands have done. I believe the saying goes "stick with what works" though, and this works very well. I just hope this money making sound doesn't go to their heads on the next album.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree with everything posted in this except that I never could get my ears to like 'for you' other than that I find this to be an exceptional review and I applaud your previous posts I've been reading back entries. I was pleasently suprised at your mention of David Gray I would not have picked you out as a fan. Keep writing.