Coldplay was all of four songs into its concert Tuesday night at the DTE Energy Music Theatre when frontman Chris Martin declared "It's gonna be a good one," writes the Oakland Press today.
And nothing that happened during the next 19 numbers undermined that prediction. Then again, good Coldplay shows are nothing new. Dipping into the playbooks of forebears such as Pink Floyd, Queen, nine inch nails and especially U2, the British quartet has been consistently adept at turning its mix of anthemtic and ambient rock into a visceral and visual treat when they hit the stage.
It's a testament to Coldplay's four-album career that the group can toss three of its biggest hits -- "Clocks," "In My Place" and "Yellow" -- into the first 25 minutes of the show and still have plenty of top-shelf material to carry the rest of the night, all accented by Martin's Muppet-like energy and earnestly grateful stage demeanor.
"I don't know much about the NHL," he said before playing "The Hardest Part on a night when the Red Wings were playing Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals in Pittsburgh. "I do understand how much you had to sacrifice to come to our concert...If this were in Britain nobody would be here...They would have just left us with an empty room, like we used to have."
Hockey or not, it's likely none of the nearly 15,000 at DTE would have wanted to be anywhere else on Tuesday. Nine months into a world tour Coldplay was still in solid, dynamic form, and its staging -- from the legion of yellow balloons bouncing around the pavilion during "Yellow" to an opulent lighting array and lasers -- added an aura of spectacle to the proceedings. The group's latest album, "Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends," was still the star of the show -- with 10 of the album's 11 songs in the set list -- and the likes of "Violet Hill," "42," "Cemeteries of London" and "Strawberry Swing" sat nicely alongside the big hits. Martin made another nod to the locale by injecting a bit of Eminem's Academy Award-winning "Lose Yourself" -- whose co-writer, Luis Resto, sat in the crowd -- into the song "Viva La Vida."
Some of the show's best moments were literally off the stage -- the main one, at least. Coldplay did not let the outdoor amphitheater setting deter it from going into the crowd, playing a few songs -- including a medley of "God Put a Smile Upon Your Face" and "Talk" -- on a small platform on the far right side of the DTE pavilion, then trooped to another stage at foot of the lawn to play a three-song acoustic set that closed with the Monkees' "I'm a Believer" and a Martin-instituted "Mexican cell phone wave" that sent a wash of hand-held light throughout the venue.
This was Coldplay's second Detroit-area stop in the past seven months, and with the group working on a new album even as it continues to tour, there's every possibility it will return sooner than later. Given Tuesday's show, that can't happen too soon.
Pictures: by ashleylouwho @ livejournal.com