Few pop stars - saints Bob and Bono aside - have the power to shake the corporate world, but British group Coldplay have achieved the feat not once but twice within 12 months.
Last March, when EMI announced the band were delaying the release of their new album, the company’s shares fell steeply. And when the news broke on Thursday that singer Chris Martin had announced the band’s break-up, anxious selling forced several points off the company’s share price within minutes of the markets opening. For a great many others, though, the news - later contradicted - that Britain’s biggest pop group were to split was music to their ears. Few bands in recent times can have represented such a paradox: selling eight million copies of their most recent album, X & Y, while simultaneously being regarded as - in the words of one New York Times rock writer - “the most insufferable band of the past decade”.
Martin was picking up the Brit award for the best album of 2005 when he said: “People are fed up with us - and so are we. You won’t see us at one of these for many, many years.”
Shares in EMI fell 3 per cent, wiping 8p off the share price, before recovering once an EMI spokesman insisted the band was merely planning to take two years out from the public eye.
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