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🌍 Coldplay: Music of the Spheres đŸȘ | Out Now! | Discussion


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6 hours ago, TealAppeal said:

On another note, I woke up today with a Coldplay related dream.

I also had a similar dream recently!!!

Anyway, can you tell me more about this:

On 11/15/2021 at 10:05 AM, sa_spurs_tx said:

During a live stream a year or so ago, he mentioned a new version of UFO and.. Us Against the World ??

Does someone among you remember the interview?

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Hi guys!!! Last Monday an Italian newspaper published a brief interview with violinist Davide Rossi. I'm Italian and live in Italy, so I promptly went to the newsagent's and bought the paper. In

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My special edition CD came early...so it's just leaked inside my house 😀

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I'm curious what people think about the anticipated Music of the Spheres Vol. 2 and Vol. 3. Personally, I'm feeling a bit miffed about how MOTS was supposed to tell a story and have metaphorical planets and how it basically dropped the ball completely on that promise. Sure, the planet concepts and alien languages are cool, but musically and lyrically the band seemed to put NO EFFORT into telling a story. 

I'd like to say the music videos are helping, but there's really not anything connecting HP to MU. Personally, I'm afraid the band is gonna keep on creating "planets" which are just random sounding pop songs for two more albums and we'll have three albums that don't really tell any story. I am coming into this question with a bias, as now that the album's been out for a month I think it's safe to say it's Coldplay's worst, and user scores and critic scores seem to agree. I'm glad the album is connecting with so many people but I think the concept feels empty. Will they improve on it?

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4 hours ago, lennyrott1 said:

I'm curious what people think about the anticipated Music of the Spheres Vol. 2 and Vol. 3. Personally, I'm feeling a bit miffed about how MOTS was supposed to tell a story and have metaphorical planets and how it basically dropped the ball completely on that promise. Sure, the planet concepts and alien languages are cool, but musically and lyrically the band seemed to put NO EFFORT into telling a story. 

I'd like to say the music videos are helping, but there's really not anything connecting HP to MU. Personally, I'm afraid the band is gonna keep on creating "planets" which are just random sounding pop songs for two more albums and we'll have three albums that don't really tell any story. I am coming into this question with a bias, as now that the album's been out for a month I think it's safe to say it's Coldplay's worst, and user scores and critic scores seem to agree. I'm glad the album is connecting with so many people but I think the concept feels empty. Will they improve on it?

That’s a bold claim when AHFOD is right there


If it’s lore you’re after, you’ll find that quite easily on Humankind, People of the Pride and Coloratura (the top 3 of the album IMO), possibly with Biutyful too but that’s still a mystery for me. These songs in particular seem to tell us about themselves in relation to their spheres. Of course we would all like a bit more of the story of the Spheres, but how about we wait for more music videos and material to be released before making judgement calls on that?

Keep in mind too all of the songs are actually about us on earth and are simple love songs according to Chris Martin. 

It is true critics have been harsh on this album but haven’t they always been to Coldplay? Never take any reviewers from the likes of Pitchfork and Fantano seriously when it comes to Coldplay. 

Since they also mentioned they’re continuing to work with Max Martin, you will be right that there will be some more pop oriented songs (that might I add this far have been excellently produced rather than some of the past producer mishaps), but I think they will also be more experimental as Coloratura was, with the inclusion of unreleased songs like (low and behold) The Race and the silver bird edition of UATW, the original UFO etc

Chris also mentioned they’re making a musical too so there’s a lot of exciting things still coming. 
 

I think that all of us will appreciate MOTS more when the entire project is released. 
 

 

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There's no real straight storyline to this concept. That's the thing about Coldplay always. There seem to be concepts, but they are vague. This is one thing what's annoying to a lot of people about Coldplay. At the same time this has also been their strength and what makes their music very universal - anyone may find their own way through time to connect to certain songs and have their own story with song.

I think Music of the Spheres will make a bit more sense after the possible next volumes. So far for me it seems like the planets are just made to reflect certain issues or experiences, what humans are dealing with on the Earth. Sometimes these themes with each planet are a bit vague also, but the songs are basicly supposed to be written to each planet with the simple idea of "approach to each situation and everyone with love and positivity". That's what From Earth with Love means for me. And one way of looking at the "everyone is an alien somewhere" is thinking that each one of us can find themselves on any of these planets and relate to the issue or experience that the planet is trying to reflect.

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12 hours ago, TheLostColdplayer said:

Does someone among you remember the interview?

It was during the pandemic in 2020, when Chris did two or three (I don't remember exactly) mini-live shows for the Together At Home series with Global Citizen. You can easily find them on YouTube! I remember he mentioned Us against the world on that occasion 

 

12 hours ago, TheLostColdplayer said:
18 hours ago, TealAppeal said:

On another note, I woke up today with a Coldplay related dream.

I also had a similar dream recently!!!

I also woke up with a Coldplay related dream this morning😅

I would put the thing this way: so far, in terms of storyline behind the single album, it seems a bit messy. That's an opinion about the story, the narrative behind the single album. But if I consider that MOTS 1, 2 and 3 is supposed to tell us a story, like MX does, than I would consider MOTS 1 as the "introduction", which presents where the events will take place. So, I expect that somehow in the end the perceived lack of cohesion of the first volume will be compensated. It happens all the time with books or film, so conceptually it could work in music. We will see. 

It is also true that other previous album (just to mention one, AROBTTH, but actually many of their album, as someone has pointed out here) don't have a narration/story behind either, but they are great. In those cases cohesion is given more by the feeling and themes of the album, than by a story: there isn't any story to tell, but the mood set by the album ties everything together. 

With MOTS 1 they are somehow in between: the album tries to tell a story, but in a future perspective, so for the moment we can't really connect with it. At the same time, the album is so varied in terms of songs, that there isn't a prevailing feeling which represents all the tracks and which could tie everything together. 

Personally I have the feeling that the final outcome, so all the complete MOTS project, will overcome the flaws of the single albums. Or at least, once every volume is out, some issues and choices about this first volume will be clearer than they are now! 

2 hours ago, CP-EST said:

one way of looking at the "everyone is an alien somewhere" is thinking that each one of us can find themselves on any of these planets and relate to the issue or experience that the planet is trying to reflect.

Agree with this interpretation a lot!

Edited by only.your.imagination
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34 minutes ago, only.your.imagination said:

It was during the pandemic in 2020, when Chris did two or three (I don't remember exactly) mini-live show for the Together At Home series with Global Citizen.

Hi, thank you so much for replying!!

You're right, though I hope for more storytelling within songs or albums. VlVoDaAHF had general themes (love, war, death and revolution) and stories within songs (like "Viva la Vida" or "Violet Hill"). ARoBttH lacked a general theme, but had good stories hidden within song lyrics ("The Scientist", "A Rush of Blood to the Head"). MX had narrative songs (like "Paradise" or "Major Minus") and followed the story of Mylo. GS was a spiritual journey through a break-up and towards unconditional love, learning how to alchemise all the things that happen to us, with each song representing a step forward in this journey.

In comparison MotS-1 started with a great concept (the planetary system, with different planets representing different issues) but appeared to leave it quite underdeveloped and, except for "Coloratura", the space theme seems to have ended up only in the visual representation of the album and in the marketing campaign. For instance, I imagined Floris to be linked to a kind of environmentalist song, Ultra to an anti-violence/anti-war anthem, Kaotica to a song that addressed inequalities and the marginalisation of people and so on. But in the end there's not much of EL-style criticism of contemporary issues. This disappointed me a bit. Though some songs, like "Human Heart" or "Let Somebody Go", have a good theme behind, actually.

Anyway, let's hope that with the second volume things might make much more sense. 😉

 

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13 minutes ago, TheLostColdplayer said:

You're right, though I hope for more storytelling within songs or albums.

I'm curious about how they will (well, at this point, I'd better say "how they have", assuming that they have already planned everything) build the whole thing. With MX there were the comics, GS didn't actually need anything particular as the inspiration was from a real life event. For other albums there were more themes than stories in the traditional sense, so we will see😄

13 minutes ago, TheLostColdplayer said:

But in the end there's not much of EL-style criticism of contemporary issues. This disappointed me a bit.

No, I also think that definitely there isn't this element of criticism towards the contemporary world, probably because they have decided to head in a different commercial and artistic direction (also in Coloratura, which is my favourite of the album, these themes are simply not there). As usual, they have preferred variety, which is very coldplay-ish😅

I really like EL themes however, I think they fit well for them, also because of all their social involvement over the years!

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Good conversation and definitely appreciate everyone's thoughts! It's true that basically no Coldplay album is truly conceptual except maybe Ghost Stories. MX also was more understandable after they released the comic book, but that was really only for big fans to dive into deeper. Perhaps with more Volumes and videos we'll get a bit more clarity on the themes behind MOTS. 

I think the issue I have overall is how MOTS was marketed so heavily as a space album. I've almost forgotten that Alien Radio had different clips from around the world, featuring really interesting ideas and themes -- like maybe MOTS was gong to be the futuristic space sibling to Everyday Life -- but none of those clips or ideas made it into the album. The notes on spotify for each planet really seem to imply that very little thought went into why each planet was the way it was -- almost like it just came out of Chris' sketchbook. Why are there two vacation resort planets? Haha

I do love the theme of "We are Allone in the universe" and "Everyone is an alien somehwhere" but reading MOTS lyrics doesn't really add up to me. AHFOD on the other hand I think does a good job  having multiple songs about being uplifted and healing. The songs thematically work together from beginning to end, in my opinion, even if some of them aren't my favorite musically. Coloratura seems to be the only song that is interested in the universe and believing in love as the thing that keeps us together -- as some sort of magical place where "everyone's allowed." I get that LSG is the breakup song, Human Heart is the humanity song, POTP is the rebellious song, but what do they mean together? Hopefully we learn more soon! 

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2 hours ago, lennyrott1 said:

Good conversation and definitely appreciate everyone's thoughts! It's true that basically no Coldplay album is truly conceptual except maybe Ghost Stories. MX also was more understandable after they released the comic book, but that was really only for big fans to dive into deeper. Perhaps with more Volumes and videos we'll get a bit more clarity on the themes behind MOTS. 

I think the issue I have overall is how MOTS was marketed so heavily as a space album. I've almost forgotten that Alien Radio had different clips from around the world, featuring really interesting ideas and themes -- like maybe MOTS was gong to be the futuristic space sibling to Everyday Life -- but none of those clips or ideas made it into the album. The notes on spotify for each planet really seem to imply that very little thought went into why each planet was the way it was -- almost like it just came out of Chris' sketchbook. Why are there two vacation resort planets? Haha

I do love the theme of "We are Allone in the universe" and "Everyone is an alien somehwhere" but reading MOTS lyrics doesn't really add up to me. AHFOD on the other hand I think does a good job  having multiple songs about being uplifted and healing. The songs thematically work together from beginning to end, in my opinion, even if some of them aren't my favorite musically. Coloratura seems to be the only song that is interested in the universe and believing in love as the thing that keeps us together -- as some sort of magical place where "everyone's allowed." I get that LSG is the breakup song, Human Heart is the humanity song, POTP is the rebellious song, but what do they mean together? Hopefully we learn more soon! 

I do agree, that at the beginning MOTS seemed like it will be some connected concept story in space. The marketing turned out to be a bit confusing. Eventually it turned out that the Spheres are only a safe space to express themselves about experiences and issues on Earth, nothing more. Although this is also potentially a good concept, I would have expected a bit more controversial and deeper thoughts to be said in songs. So far with vol1 they haven't used the actual potential of this concept. Also the connections between the planets and songs are too vague indeed. It's just a bunch of love songs, like Chris said.

On the other hand, sound and atmosphere of this record has quite strong spacey elements and vibes. So production actually achieves the potential of connecting the music and the concept throughout the album in my opinion.

I don't have too high expectations for possible next volumes having more depth in songs. Still it will be interesting to see if next volumes will be extension further into space and becoming more bold and experimental or it will be some kind of response to the songs on vol 1.  

What I actually hope for next volume is some outrageous and weird space musical, just because Chris in one of the interiews or podcasts talked about potential musical and new song called "Weirdo" for it.

Vol2 - From space with rage!

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2 hours ago, gustavothehuman said:

At this point I just hope they scrap everything and return with something different, everyone hates this album 😞

It's hard to say -- I think there's a ton of people who really, really like it! And I don't want to be a bummer here. Personally when someone likes something I don't, I just get jealous because I want to see the merit in everything and enjoy it. I hope this album warms up to me, but it left little impact on me personally, but I might have different taste than others and that's okay! I'm thankful the band is trying new things, I just hope they can continue improving on some of the new musical ideas they're working with right now. 

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As you all said in previous comments this discussion is becoming really exciting!

It would be interesting to compare this album with the other space-influenced Coldplay album, X&Y. The multi-layered synths there sound really spacey and there are several references to outer space:

1) the album begins with that 2001: A Space Odissey motif in "Square One". The song also features the lines "the space in which we're travelling" and "is there anybody out there, who's lost and hurt and lonely too?"

2) "White Shadows" is a masterpiece of a song and there is a line which perfectly fits with Coldplay's current vision of humanity: "You're part of the human race, all of the stars and the outer space. Part of a system, a plan". Not to mention the synths.

3) Kraftwerk's influence on "Talk" is in its spacey guitars and atmosphere. The song refers to a "ladder up to the sun" one could climb. Also the video ties perfectly with the space concept. Again, the concept of loneliness and lack of comunication seems to reinforce the outer space idea.

3) X&Y continues with that sound and features "You and me are drifting into outer space".

4) Then we have: "Look up, I look up at night / Planets are moving at the speed of light" in "Speed of Sound".

5) Brian Eno contributes synths to "Low" and he probably bought them at some alien fair, as they really lift the song up to the stars.

6) Twisted Logic also refers to a time "Hundreds of years in the future" when "There could be computers / Looking for life on earth".

X&Y might not be my favourite Coldplay album, but it's a really good one and certainly a wonderful space journey.

 

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1 hour ago, TheLostColdplayer said:

As you all said in previous comments this discussion is becoming really exciting!

It would be interesting to compare this album with the other space-influenced Coldplay album, X&Y. The multi-layered synths there sound really spacey and there are several references to outer space:

1) the album begins with that 2001: A Space Odissey motif in "Square One". The song also features the lines "the space in which we're travelling" and "is there anybody out there, who's lost and hurt and lonely too?"

2) "White Shadows" is a masterpiece of a song and there is a line which perfectly fits with Coldplay's current vision of humanity: "You're part of the human race, all of the stars and the outer space. Part of a system, a plan". Not to mention the synths.

3) Kraftwerk's influence on "Talk" is in its spacey guitars and atmosphere. The song refers to a "ladder up to the sun" one could climb. Also the video ties perfectly with the space concept. Again, the concept of loneliness and lack of comunication seems to reinforce the outer space idea.

3) X&Y continues with that sound and features "You and me are drifting into outer space".

4) Then we have: "Look up, I look up at night / Planets are moving at the speed of light" in "Speed of Sound".

5) Brian Eno contributes synths to "Low" and he probably bought them at some alien fair, as they really lift the song up to the stars.

6) Twisted Logic also refers to a time "Hundreds of years in the future" when "There could be computers / Looking for life on earth".

X&Y might not be my favourite Coldplay album, but it's a really good one and certainly a wonderful space journey.

 

X&Y is an incredible album. A balanced adventure between space and humanity lyrics, that “acoustic” thing (from early Coldplay), and synth/pads with exquisite presence. And the first with an alphabet in it.

But even that, there is an interview (that I can’t find it again now) when Chris confessed that is their worst album, not because of the songs, but because it was “bad recorded”. For me it’s a masterpiece.

A particular contradiction, is that Twisted Logic was never performed live. In a performance of Chris with talented kids doing this song, Chris said that they never figured out how to do it live
 they can did Coloratura, but not Twisted Logic 🙂

Anyway, thanks TheLostColdplayer for bringing X&Y to the light again!.

 

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17 hours ago, CP-EST said:

I do agree, that at the beginning MOTS seemed like it will be some connected concept story in space. The marketing turned out to be a bit confusing. Eventually it turned out that the Spheres are only a safe space to express themselves about experiences and issues on Earth, nothing more. Although this is also potentially a good concept, I would have expected a bit more controversial and deeper thoughts to be said in songs. So far with vol1 they haven't used the actual potential of this concept. Also the connections between the planets and songs are too vague indeed. It's just a bunch of love songs, like Chris said.

On the other hand, sound and atmosphere of this record has quite strong spacey elements and vibes. So production actually achieves the potential of connecting the music and the concept throughout the album in my opinion.

I don't have too high expectations for possible next volumes having more depth in songs. Still it will be interesting to see if next volumes will be extension further into space and becoming more bold and experimental or it will be some kind of response to the songs on vol 1.  

What I actually hope for next volume is some outrageous and weird space musical, just because Chris in one of the interiews or podcasts talked about potential musical and new song called "Weirdo" for it.

Vol2 - From space with rage!

I’ve arrived to back you up. I feel completely the same about MOTS. When Coloratura came out, it really did feel like the happy ending to a story we hadn’t been told yet, one where there was a big space war with some people dying but ultimately togetherness wins. Instead, most of the songs have an opportunity to advance the plot but don’t. Yes, People of the Pride established the existence of a villain. But Higher Power is just like “something is vaguely bad and I don’t feel good but I like you!” Humankind is somewhat about humans being good. LSG is about missing someone. HH is mostly about gender roles and Biutyful is also rather vague. MU is “something is preventing us from being together but let’s do it anyways”. I love most or all of the songs on the album and they do have space related lyrics but they really don’t paint any kind of plot or picture. 
 

Further, I would argue MX has more plot in its little finger than MOTS. HLH and Charlie Brown, and to some extent Paradise accomplish a surprising amount of world building. There’s references to graffiti on the bridge in the park, stealing a car and the lost boys. In HLH it’s all about running around nervous because you’re doing something you’re not supposed to be doing but the streets are ours. The girl in Paradise. In UATW and ETIAW there’s a clear sense of togetherness against political oppression. MM through UIF describe a villain and getting defeated. AHT/DLIBYH and UWTB are about feeling okay despite the crappy happenings of chapter 2. 
 

It’s not that MX had a fully fleshed out linear storyline but I really do think the lyrics and music communicate so much more! Even VLV and X&Y have a bit more of a journey. 

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1 hour ago, TheLostColdplayer said:

As you all said in previous comments this discussion is becoming really exciting!

It would be interesting to compare this album with the other space-influenced Coldplay album, X&Y. The multi-layered synths there sound really spacey and there are several references to outer space:

1) the album begins with that 2001: A Space Odissey motif in "Square One". The song also features the lines "the space in which we're travelling" and "is there anybody out there, who's lost and hurt and lonely too?"

2) "White Shadows" is a masterpiece of a song and there is a line which perfectly fits with Coldplay's current vision of humanity: "You're part of the human race, all of the stars and the outer space. Part of a system, a plan". Not to mention the synths.

3) Kraftwerk's influence on "Talk" is in its spacey guitars and atmosphere. The song refers to a "ladder up to the sun" one could climb. Also the video ties perfectly with the space concept. Again, the concept of loneliness and lack of comunication seems to reinforce the outer space idea.

3) X&Y continues with that sound and features "You and me are drifting into outer space".

4) Then we have: "Look up, I look up at night / Planets are moving at the speed of light" in "Speed of Sound".

5) Brian Eno contributes synths to "Low" and he probably bought them at some alien fair, as they really lift the song up to the stars.

6) Twisted Logic also refers to a time "Hundreds of years in the future" when "There could be computers / Looking for life on earth".

X&Y might not be my favourite Coldplay album, but it's a really good one and certainly a wonderful space journey.

 

I want to add something to this. I think the concept of X&Y is one of the strongest and most powerful. The simplistic "cliched" lines followed up by paradoxal lyrics makes it so much more saying than at least half of the songs in MOTS. I think X&Y really framed their view on problems and how they approach them from a space perspective.

Moreover, it feels so so genuine and authentic to me. Especially when you realize that they were looking for a light in the darkness those time. And the instrumentals and vocals support the lyrics and theme in a very lovely way. 

 

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I love all tour previous comment

4 hours ago, WhiteShadow7 said:

I want to add something to this. I think the concept of X&Y is one of the strongest and most powerful. The simplistic "cliched" lines followed up by paradoxal lyrics makes it so much more saying than at least half of the songs in MOTS. I think X&Y really framed their view on problems and how they approach them from a space perspective.

Moreover, it feels so so genuine and authentic to me. Especially when you realize that they were looking for a light in the darkness those time. And the instrumentals and vocals support the lyrics and theme in a very lovely way. 

 

And that's why X&Y is my favourite album of theirs. Because when you listen it, you simply trascend to another dimension. At least, that is true for me. One doesn't think "oh, this album is about space, galaxy, planets" while listening; obviously there are hints to those themes (both in the lyrics and in the melodies), but it is more an experience of being transported away from where you are. 

In the hindsight, it may be that X&Y is so powerful because it represents a very complex period for the band: it seems as if they captured the difficulties they were in and tried to lift themselves out of what was happening.

I think that in MOTS they managed to recreate the magic of being "transported to another dimension" in Coloratura and in Infinity sign; other songs which still I like (Humankind or People of the pride for example) to me lack this element a bit.  

4 hours ago, MosesTheMarshmallow said:

I love most or all of the songs on the album and they do have space related lyrics but they really don’t paint any kind of plot or picture. 

It seems as if each song is a piece of a different story. It would be interesting if vol 2 or 3 somehow continued all the potential stories started in vol. 1... who knows!

Btw I love reading all these opinions

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To continue showering on the praise for X&Y, perhaps at the expense of of MOTS, I think the album does do a better job of giving a spacey feel than MOTS overall and I agree that the instrumentation is incredible -- Jonny has some sort of solo on nearly every song. The songs both simultaneously feel ambient and open while also having rich rock instrumentation. Guy and Will really take a step forward on that record. 

But the part of X&Y I want to highlight is how catchy it is! I know people argue over Oldplay vs. Newplay, but Oldplay had major pop appeal -- it's why people hated on them so much back then. The chorus and hooks on Square One, Talk, The Hardest Part, Speed of Sound, A Message, Fix You... all of those songs get stuck in your head. Now fast forward to MOTS, and what exactly is an earworm? I guess Higher Power a tiny bit, MU is too but it's SO repetitive, Humankind is also solid here. I think what concerns me with newer Coldplay is that the consistency in songwriting isn't there. Chris isn't writing as many "classics" and at this point, I'd say Coloratura is the only song on MOTS that's left a lasting impact on the majority of fans. And usually I don't care if the songs don't feel classic if they deliver good instrumentation, but on MOTS most of the instrumentals are sleepers for me.

EDIT: Want to be clear that it's silly to make a 1x1 comparison between these two albums that are 16 years apart. The musical style is gonna change. But my argument is that the catchiness and pop appeal have faded for me.

Edited by lennyrott1
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Although X&Y is great album, songwriting is very strong throughout the album and Chris has a lot to say lyrically, I feel like there isn't much enjoyment shining through it (which was the actual case as we know). It almost feels like the ideas and the sounds were forced out and creatively doing a favour for someone else. Chris' singing on it and all band kind of starts sounding monotone very soon for me. It's very catchy, but it wears out and begs for change. It goes in a pattern of fast song->slow song->fast song... until at some point it kind of gets all samey. Luckily there is Til Kingdom Come at the end giving a bit different tone.

All of it isn't necessarily a bad thing, the same things actually contribute to this album in a good way also, making it a good coherent listen. But it's a sound of great ambitious band put in a certain box, writing great songs and producing them in a very restricted way. Almost like having the actual ideas of a full songs beforehand and then violating the song ideas until they please someone else. In the end delivering an album, which ends up sounding perfect, but which doesn't actually bring that many new and different sounding songs for live performances.

In summary, X&Y is something to listen, when I want to feel in a certain spacey comfort zone and listen to good music, which doesn't change much for an hour.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's one of their best albums, but I'm very happy, that as band they found a way out of this era and became creatively more free and happier. Making live shows as great, diverse and energetic as they can and bringing people together seems to be the main thing driving them still. So, we're lucky, that they still have some ambition and creativity in them to change and progress, not going into comfort zone and sound like a nostalgia act. 

In a nutshell, is X&Y better album than MOTS? Absolutely. But could it deliver anything interesting to their live shows at this point like MOTS did? No. There are still some X&Y songs, which have much potential to fill some spaces in setlist, when reworked a bit. But you've got to accept, their new stuff has different kind of catchiness, which becomes way more alive in live performances. While the catchiness from most of the X&Y songs is very static and doesn't transform into live performances that well.

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1 hour ago, CP-EST said:

Although X&Y is great album, songwriting is very strong throughout the album and Chris has a lot to say lyrically, I feel like there isn't much enjoyment shining through it (which was the actual case as we know). It almost feels like the ideas and the sounds were forced out and creatively doing a favour for someone else. Chris' singing on it and all band kind of starts sounding monotone very soon for me. It's very catchy, but it wears out and begs for change. It goes in a pattern of fast song->slow song->fast song... until at some point it kind of gets all samey. Luckily there is Til Kingdom Come at the end giving a bit different tone.

All of it isn't necessarily a bad thing, the same things actually contribute to this album in a good way also, making it a good coherent listen. But it's a sound of great ambitious band put in a certain box, writing great songs and producing them in a very restricted way. Almost like having the actual ideas of a full songs beforehand and then violating the song ideas until they please someone else. In the end delivering an album, which ends up sounding perfect, but which doesn't actually bring that many new and different sounding songs for live performances.

In summary, X&Y is something to listen, when I want to feel in a certain spacey comfort zone and listen to good music, which doesn't change much for an hour.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's one of their best albums, but I'm very happy, that as band they found a way out of this era and became creatively more free and happier. Making live shows as great, diverse and energetic as they can and bringing people together seems to be the main thing driving them still. So, we're lucky, that they still have some ambition and creativity in them to change and progress, not going into comfort zone and sound like a nostalgia act. 

In a nutshell, is X&Y better album than MOTS? Absolutely. But could it deliver anything interesting to their live shows at this point like MOTS did? No. There are still some X&Y songs, which have much potential to fill some spaces in setlist, when reworked a bit. But you've got to accept, their new stuff has different kind of catchiness, which becomes way more alive in live performances. While the catchiness from most of the X&Y songs is very static and doesn't transform into live performances that well.

100% agree with this, although I would rate MOTS above X&Y for the very reasons stated here. 
 

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1 hour ago, CP-EST said:

Although X&Y is great album, songwriting is very strong throughout the album and Chris has a lot to say lyrically, I feel like there isn't much enjoyment shining through it (which was the actual case as we know). It almost feels like the ideas and the sounds were forced out and creatively doing a favour for someone else. Chris' singing on it and all band kind of starts sounding monotone very soon for me. It's very catchy, but it wears out and begs for change. It goes in a pattern of fast song->slow song->fast song... until at some point it kind of gets all samey. Luckily there is Til Kingdom Come at the end giving a bit different tone.

All of it isn't necessarily a bad thing, the same things actually contribute to this album in a good way also, making it a good coherent listen. But it's a sound of great ambitious band put in a certain box, writing great songs and producing them in a very restricted way. Almost like having the actual ideas of a full songs beforehand and then violating the song ideas until they please someone else. In the end delivering an album, which ends up sounding perfect, but which doesn't actually bring that many new and different sounding songs for live performances.

In summary, X&Y is something to listen, when I want to feel in a certain spacey comfort zone and listen to good music, which doesn't change much for an hour.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's one of their best albums, but I'm very happy, that as band they found a way out of this era and became creatively more free and happier. Making live shows as great, diverse and energetic as they can and bringing people together seems to be the main thing driving them still. So, we're lucky, that they still have some ambition and creativity in them to change and progress, not going into comfort zone and sound like a nostalgia act. 

In a nutshell, is X&Y better album than MOTS? Absolutely. But could it deliver anything interesting to their live shows at this point like MOTS did? No. There are still some X&Y songs, which have much potential to fill some spaces in setlist, when reworked a bit. But you've got to accept, their new stuff has different kind of catchiness, which becomes way more alive in live performances. While the catchiness from most of the X&Y songs is very static and doesn't transform into live performances that well.

My issue with X&Y is that the songs by themselves are amazing. The melodies and instrumentation from songs like Swallowed in the Sea, White Shadows, Low, Twisted Logic, etc. are some of the best they've ever made. But listening to it an album, the flaws become apparent because each song, while great, is admittedly a bit formulaic. Each song barring some like the closing track basically follows a structure like intro -> first chorus -> first verse -> bigger second chorus -> quiet bridge -> guitar solo/thrashing cimax -> final chorus, this time more stripped down. And each song trying to be the biggest it can be is admittedly a bit tiring. I also think this is the weak point of Chris' lyrics. In the first two records the lyrics were incredibly personal and touching, but here some of them are a bit... yeah, not that good. There are some great lyrics but just as many bad ones. 

Also - why were the best songs relegated to the B-Sides? Gravity, Things I Don't Understand, The World Turned Upside Down, Sleeping Sun, and even HYSTW 2 could have provided the record with some variety but they weren't included.

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1 hour ago, IcebatofvalikinRRBZ8 said:

Why so many MU remixes? Another one!

Promo. My Universe still is the current single, if I remember correctly we should get the next one around January. As for December, I don't think it will be very crowded for them, we have Christmas after all.

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I think I said this before here but the biggest problem to me is the Oldplay x Newplay debacle. I feel like the band might think making stuff like Arabesque, Coloratura, etc. is pandering to the crowd that mindlessly repeats "Oldplay is better" until the end of time, hence why they show up less often. We need to praise those songs for what they are: new amazing pieces that show artistic growth, that's how we encourage them to lean towards that side more, not by going "it's good because it sounds like the stuff you made back in 2005 when your mind and relationships were completely f***ed up".

Edited by gustavothehuman
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My first listen, when the album went out, was god-awful. About a month later I tried to go with no expectations at all and it was even worse.

I think that the main problem with the new album or Newplay generally is that they try to be super-positive about everything. I can imagine Chris being with someone totally out of tune and say "You are so talented, man, that's amazing!". I live in Eastern Europe and I miss that critizism towards others and themselves they previously had. They should put their foot down and say "no, that's not gonna happen, it's just not Coldplay". Yet they go with this "never say no to anything"-agenda.

I'm sure Chris knows that his lyrics aren't the best in the world. They have always felt like they try to build a lego house while the pieces are "birds", "sky", "amazing" etc. But this isn't why we listen to Coldplay. I've enjoyed thet beautiful wall of sounds, which are experimental and sound real. But now it has been replaced by some synth sounds that Chris probably thought was "super cool sound", that they can't play live without a backing track. 

And it's amazing how they can flop their nice concept of a space album with so terribly bland songs, half of them being interludes. I feel like I'm wasting my life, because I haven't listened through all the Bowies songs, instead I'm here and listen to musical genius (I really think that Chris has amazing songwriting abilities) trying to be 15. 
 

Life is too short to be that boring.

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18 hours ago, TheBigBadBono said:

My issue with X&Y is that the songs by themselves are amazing. The melodies and instrumentation from songs like Swallowed in the Sea, White Shadows, Low, Twisted Logic, etc. are some of the best they've ever made. But listening to it an album, the flaws become apparent because each song, while great, is admittedly a bit formulaic. Each song barring some like the closing track basically follows a structure like intro -> first chorus -> first verse -> bigger second chorus -> quiet bridge -> guitar solo/thrashing cimax -> final chorus, this time more stripped down. And each song trying to be the biggest it can be is admittedly a bit tiring. I also think this is the weak point of Chris' lyrics. In the first two records the lyrics were incredibly personal and touching, but here some of them are a bit... yeah, not that good. There are some great lyrics but just as many bad ones. 

Also - why were the best songs relegated to the B-Sides? Gravity, Things I Don't Understand, The World Turned Upside Down, Sleeping Sun, and even HYSTW 2 could have provided the record with some variety but they weren't included.

This hits on a lot of my criticism of X&Y as well. 

Obviously, Jonny's guitar playing was amazing on that album. But the lyrics, I mean...What If and Swallowed in the Sea have to be two of their worst in that regard. SitS is painful.

I agree with an earlier comment that said the music is not mixed very well. I would enjoy songs like White Shadows and Fix You much more if there was greater instrument separation like on VlV. When the songs go big it's synth/piano, guitar and drums all coming down at once.

X&Y feels very bloated and I'm sure it's the reason they created the whole "42 minute rule." Reminds me of Hail to the Thief in that regard, which came out a year before. There are several songs that could be taken off without affecting my overall score for the album very much. More, it turns out, is not always better.

It's also the one album that doesn't have a quintessential Coldplay song to me. All the others do.

[Parachutes- Sparks], [ARoBttH- Clocks, The Scientist, Warning Sign], [VlVoDaAHF- Cemeteries of London, VlV, DaAHF], [Mylo- Hurts Like Heaven, U.F.O., Us Against the World], [Ghost Stories- O], [AHFoD- Birds], [Everyday Life- Trouble in Town, Arabesque, Daddy, Eko], [MotS- Coloratura]

Twisted Logic is close to that for me but I don't quite consider it in the Top 10 songs conversation like those above. Although It has only grown on me since I first heard the album in 2006, so it may be there one day.  Incredible song that is one of their most underrated, I think. Love the highly political lyrics and guitar/bass.

I remember reading a note from Rik Simpson I believe during the Viva era. He said something like the best songs from the sessions should be there, "If it means ten ballads and a heavy metal track, so be it. But that's not how the band feels and we have to respect that." It wasn't until MX that they started putting very contrasting styles of music together. Maybe Coldplay's most rock-sounding song in Major Minus followed directly by the electropop/R&B PoC. They wanted X&Y to sound cohesive musically and it does. Their first three albums, in particular, do.

X&Y is a great album but I get the distinct impression that the critical and commercial success of ARotBttH created an immense amount of stress for the band. Also, they were the top selling artist on a failing music label. I remember how much money EMI lost when they had to delay the release of X&Y. We might've gotten a better album, at least lyrically, with more time. Thinking Chris dealt with some writer's block during this era and that explains the disparity in the quality of the lyrics.

MotS and X&Y are very different for me, despite being back to back in my rankings.

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