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Ok. I wasn't going to weigh in on this mainstream vs. non-mainstream bulls&^t, but I just can't resist.


It's one thing if you don't like the new music, saying so doesn't make you a "hater" (as long as it's new music you've actually heard.) However, IMHO there are a couple things about this "coldplay going mainstream" argument that make absolutely no sense to me. If someone on the other side can answer some of these questions, I'd be genuinely interested in their perspective. Here goes:


1. First and foremost how on earth can "old coldplay" not be considered "mainstream" or "made for radio" I'll grant you that perhaps parachutes wasn't a pop record by any stretch (though yellow was the definition of a made for radio 3 minute pop song IMHO), but pretty much everything from AROBTTH was. In My Place, Clocks, The Scientist, Fix You, The Hardest Part, Speed of Sound all of these songs came from the "old" (and thus apparently good) era of coldplay music and ALL of them seem more structurally simple and radio ready than ANY of the tracks on VLVODAAHF. I'm really curious as to the specifics of what makes the old material "not poppy" I love coldplay but they are the most mainstream sounding band in the world and have been for 10 years.


2. Seeing as the majority of the live songs played at the summer festivals have been well received, how is all the new material judged by a few polarizing songs? By my count, only ETDIAWF and maybe Paradise have gotten what seems to be a mixed response with the general consensus on the other tracks being fairly well received. Heck, even Princess of China got good reviews from the people who actually heard the sole live performance BEFORE it was discovered that Rhianna was on the studio track.


3. Why do people feel they can assume the motives of the band? Chris especially has always had an interest in pop music/pop artists and has collaborated with many of them as a solo artist going back almost to the band's inception. how is that not an organic change? Why do some people apparently feel that there is absolutely no chance the difference in the band's music is primarily due to the fact that this is the type of music they're genuinely interested in now?


Like I said, I'm NOT one of those people who thinks you're not a "real fan" if you don't like the new music, but I'm seriously having trouble understanding the main arguments people use on here for why they don't like the new songs.


I agree with people who say that this whole direction change thing is Coldplay's version of 80's u2 vs. 90's u2 (also spurred by Eno BTW) I think the band are just interested in different things now than they were before, and people can either be interested along with them or not, neither choice is better or worse than the other, it's just a matter of personal preference, After hearing songs like Christmas Lights and UATW, I think it's clear the band can (and does) still write songs in their "old style", it's just not their primary interest at this moment in time.


I'm really curious if anyone who's on "the other side" of this whole thing can explain their thinking, I'd like to be able to see where you're coming from.

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Just wanted to say I love this post. I love Coldplay, but not blindly. They do some stuff I LOVE and some stuff I tolerate. I completely agree with what you said about them having always been mainstream and the reaction to the new songs in general, and especially about trying to assume we have any insight into the band's motives or inspirations. Just wanted to say thanks for putting what I've been thinking into writing.

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