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JAM! previews Coldplay's 'X&Y'







TORONTO -- If you think the boys in Coldplay are playing it predictable and safe on their highly anticipated third studio album "X&Y," guess again.


JAM! Music was invited to the premiere listening session for the full album in Toronto on Tuesday. What follows is not a review. It is a first impression of the album, based on a single run-through. As a caution, any lyrics quoted are simply what we managed to hear and their accuracy could be suspect.


Here it goes:


With its lush aesthetic polished to a shiny hue, the Brit-pop quartet prove they have the musical, lyrical and vocal chops to firmly wrestle the rock symphonic trophy from Radiohead's withered music box.


Musically, the disc fleshes out the moody, keyboard-based stylings that made up 2002's "A Rush of Blood to the Head," giving the 12-song set a meatier, more organic sound.


Few of the album's acoustic numbers that begin quietly end quietly. This time out, piercing guitar riffs cut through pulsating bass and drum lines on tracks like "Square One," "White Shadows," "The Hardest Part" and the current single "Speed of Sound."



They even sample a riff from Kraftwerk's "Computer Love" on the uptempo "Talk."


But amid the guitar, bass and drum, Coldplay fashions some of the most stirring, anthemic ballads they've written yet.


With hints of "Yellow" peaking through, "Fix You" digs its nails under your skin. When vocalist Chris Martin sings the lines, "If you never try/ You'll never know what you're worth," the effect is hypnotic.


On "A Message," the boys conjure bits of U2's "Wild Honey," but they manage to present a bouquet that's all their own. Anchored by its soulful acoustic strumming, it's a direct love song in which Martin melodically sings, "You're the target I'm aiming at."


And while "X&Y" shows the quartet aren't about to rehash the same chords that won them worldwide acclaim in 2002, the new album finds them singing about love and the beautiful and hurtful ways it colours our lives.


"What if you should decide/ That you don't want me there in your life," Martin sentimentally sings against a tense piano on "What if?"


And thanks to Jon Buckland's crisp guitar, listeners can hear when Martin asks, "Are you lost or incomplete?/ Tell me how you feel" on "Talk."


But it isn't all roses. On the album's final track, "Twisted Logic," the group shows a darker, edgier side. Burning with energy, Martin curtly sings, "You go backwards again/ You go forwards."


Coldplay have stacked "X&Y" with more than enough ingredients to satisfy any of their fans. But their newfound lyrical and musical confidence makes for a truly jaw dropping experience.


"X&Y" hits stores June 7.


Coldplay plays a sold out show at the Kool Haus in Toronto on May 11.









The lyrics from Talk are different :stunned: :o

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