Calgary review 2: Coldplay’s comfort rock (18th April)

First of all, how the hell could anyone have been violently slashed at the Coldplay concert? From where I was sitting, it was the most cleancut show I’ve ever attended. writes the Fast Forward Weekly blog, in a review of last night’s concert in Calgary (18th April). Catch up on more of the latest tweets, pictures, videos from this show at the Coldplay Live forum now – thanks to everyone who has contributed so far! Read on for the FFWD reviews article…

The men could only be described as “people who noticed when Randy River and Bootlegger went out of business,” while the women, a vast majority of whom could be described as “cool moms,” were dressed more business casual than any administrative employee I ever saw in my years as a temp. A lot of sleeveless blouses for the women and weirdly cut black leather jackets for the men. While the Saddledome normally smells like hot dogs, beer, weed and farts at these giant events, the Coldplay concert smelled very upper middle class. The room’s collective cologne wafted together, colliding with the strong smell of clean laundry to create something that can only be described as suffocatingly pleasant.


The only reason I noticed all these things was that I didn’t really want to be there. I was sulking in my seat, thinking about how much I disliked the band’s sappy light rock and how their overly earnest, heart-on-sleeve schtick was not for me. Then the set started, and holy crap do these guys know how to beat the shit out of your heartstrings. First of all, everyone who bought tickets was given a wristband that lit up along with the music. It was seriously magical, and brought me on board as soon as they started. The live gimmicks peaked early as they followed up the wristband trick with confetti canons, giant beach balls, lasers and, halfway through the set, weird inflatable objects.

Then there was the music. Here’s the problem: to say you hate Coldplay is to pretend that you’ve never heard them before. When they’re not doing a better U2 impression than U2 themselves, the band plays some seriously enchanted music. I tried to be a hater, but I can’t help having a heart. You would have done the same thing. Coldplay is a fucking lite rock hit factory. I don’t care how many Eddy Current Suppression Ring LPs you own, you would have been singing along to “Fix You” too.

As people, too, they’re charming as shit. Chris Martin looks like a Quentin Blake illustration from a Roald Dahl book, and he’s so funny. He won me over with the line “Gwyneth’s making drumsticks” on Extras, and he was even more awesome onstage. He interrupted one of the band’s quieter songs, saying, “Oh fuck, we messed it up.” Then he referred to his own band as “the world’s seventh biggest soft rock band from England.” Dammit! Even Coldplay makes fun of Coldplay!

That’s not to say the whole night was a warm musical hug. There were some awkward moments, particularly when Coldplay tried to “rock out.” Loud Coldplay is some sort of weird, shitty twang rock that doesn’t sound very good. But it does get the moms shuffling their feet in a sensible manner.

Then there was the weird duet that Chris Martin did with a video of Rihanna performing. While the more up-tempo songs have the sort of agreeable beat that’s ideal for rich women to tap their frail, diamond-encrusted fingers on the steering wheel of a Range Rover, it was less exciting in person.

In my section, the ultimate momgasm occurred during the band’s debut hit “Yellow,” as a legion of middle-aged ladies gently swayed back and forth as they sang along and recorded some guaranteed-to-be-unwatchable iPhone videos.

Before ending the show with a one-two punch of their most recent singles (which further proved their invincibility when it comes to writing waiting room hits), Chris Martin took the mic to thank the audience for coming. “Thanks for putting up with parking and all the other hassles that involve coming to a concert.” If that’s not proof that this is upper middle class rock, I don’t know what is. Aside from finding a good accountant and booking the right all-inclusive holiday, these people’s biggest inconvenience is finding a decent parking spot for their night out. And their biggest pop stars are the world’s seventh biggest soft rock band from England.



Don’t forget to check out your tour discussion thread if you are getting Coldplay tickets or just getting excited for the European & North American 2012 shows and other forthcoming appearances:

FEBRUARY 2012
8 Los Angeles, CA @ Club Nokia (iHeartRadio) [discussion]
9 Los Angeles, CA @ Jimmy Kimmel Live [discussion]
10 Los Angeles, CA @ GRAMMY Week MusiCares Person of the Year tribute [discussion]
12 Los Angeles, CA @ 54th Grammy Awards, Staples Center [discussion]
16 Sydney, Australia @ 2DayFM, Mobile Live Set (intimate show) [discussion] [CANCELLED]
17 Sydney, Australia @ Sunrise (intimate show) [discussion] [CANCELLED]
21 London @ Brit Awards 2012, O2 Arena [discussion]

MARCH 2012
2 New York, NY @ Good Morning America [discussion]
4 New York, NY @ The Secret Policeman’s Ball, Radio City Music Hall (Amnesty International) [discussion]

APRIL 2012
17 Edmonton, AB @ Rexall Place [discussion]
18 Calgary, AB @ Scotiabank Saddledome [discussion]
20 Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena [discussion]
21 Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena [discussion]
24 Portland, OR @ Rose Garden Arena [discussion]
25 Seattle, WA @ KeyArena [discussion]
27 San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion At San Jose [discussion]
28 San Jose, CA @ HP Pavilion At San Jose [discussion]

MAY 2012
1 Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl [discussion]
2 Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl [discussion]
4 Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl [discussion]
5 Los Angeles, CA @ KROQ’s Weenie Roast y Fiesta [discussion] [NEW!]
18 Porto, Portugal @ Dragao Stadium [discussion]
20 Madrid, Spain @ Estadio Vicente Calderón [discussion]
22 Nice, France @ Stade Charles Herman / Nikaia [discussion]
24 Turin, Italy @ Olympic Stadium [discussion]
26 Zurich, Switzerland @ Letzigrund [discussion]
29 Coventry, UK @ Ricoh Stadium [discussion]

JUNE 2012
1 London, UK @ the Emirates Stadium [discussion]
2 London, UK @ the Emirates Stadium [discussion]
4 London, UK @ the Emirates Stadium [discussion]
7 Sunderland, UK @ the Stadium of Light [discussion]
9 Manchester, UK @ the Etihad Stadium [discussion]
10 Manchester, UK @ the Etihad Stadium [discussion]
22 Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center [discussion]
23 Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center [discussion]
25 Houston, TX @ Toyota Center [discussion]
26 Houston, TX @ Toyota Center [discussion]
28 Tampa, FL @ St. Pete Times Forum [discussion]
29 Miami, FL @ American Airlines Arena [discussion]

JULY 2012
2 Atlanta, GA @ Philips Arena [discussion]
3 Charlotte, NC @ Time Warner Cable Arena [discussion]
5 Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center [discussion]
6 Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center [discussion]
8 Washington, DC @ Verizon Center [discussion]
9 Washington, DC @ Verizon Center [discussion]
23 Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre [discussion]
24 Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre [discussion]
26 Montreal, QC @ Bell Centre [discussion]
27 Montreal, QC @ Bell Centre [discussion]
29 Boston, MA @ TD Garden [discussion]
30 Boston, MA @ TD Garden [discussion]

AUGUST 2012
1 Auburn Hills, MI @ Palace of Auburn Hills [discussion]
3 East Rutherford, NJ @ Izod Center [discussion]
4 East Rutherford, NJ @ Izod Center [discussion]
7 Chicago, IL @ United Center [discussion]
8 Chicago, IL @ United Center [discussion]
11 St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center [discussion]
28 Copenhagen, Denmark @ Parken Stadium [discussion]
30 Stockholm, Sweden @ Olympic Stadium [discussion]

SEPTEMBER 2012
2 Paris, France @ Stade de France [discussion]
4 Cologne, Germany @ Rheinenergie Stadium [discussion]
6 The Hague, Netherlands @ Malieveld [discussion]
12 Munich, Germany @ Olympiastadion [discussion]
14 Leipzig, Germany @ Red Bull Stadium [discussion]
16 Prague, Czech Republic @ Slavia Eden Stadium [discussion]
19 Warsaw, Poland @ National Stadium [discussion]
22 Hannover, Germany @ AWD Arena [discussion]

Read also: European Stadium Tour announced! (general discussion thread for the Europe tour)
Read also: North America Tour announced! (general discussion thread for the US/Canada tour)
Read also: 2012: Live Appearances – Easy Thread Finder (last updated – 12th January 2012)
Read also: 2012 tour date rumours (please post dates for ALL countries in here)

Kit yourself up for the forthcoming MX tour and get spotted with Coldplaying’s new range of merchandise! [click on the items for the full shop]

The new range of Coldplaying merchanise (unofficial of course to the official shop) has hit our stores, with our biggest range of goods so far. Prices are as low as they can be for a Cafepress shop so more people will be able to afford them. We don’t take any profits for the sale of the merchandise as a result. Take a browse in one of the online stores nearest to you: UK | US | Canada | Australia | European (shipping is worldwide, but you can choose what currency to pay in) – simply alter the country dropdown menu at the top of the shop page. [thanks to TracieMorgan and zzz]