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    Guy Berryman: New album unlikely in 2009 due to touring (Hershey preview)

    guyberryman2008a.jpgThe New York Times music critic Jon Pareles has called them "the most insufferable band of the decade." And indeed Coldplay has its detractors, who stand right alongside its legions of dedicated fans.


    But they don't really matter -- the band has always beaten them to the punch in the self-critical department. Bassist Guy Berryman once told Rolling Stone, "Most of the time, we just feel like losers." And as the band was accepting one of its most recent Grammys, singer Chris Martin wryly dubbed their music "limestone rock."


    Feeling insecure, Berryman says, isn't paralyzing but is instead motivational. "That's the feeling which makes us keep on trying to go into the studio and trying to be better than we have been before," Berryman said. "And when we're play live, that's why we always try and be better than we have been before. I think it's a healthy way to feel. I just think it's insecurities, and I'm sure within the group we all have them to varying degrees. I'd love to be a big, confident rock star, but that just doesn't seem to be in any of our nature," he said.

    Berryman gave us 15 minutes of his rest time in a phone interview from London before the next leg of the band's ginormous tour was to begin anew. On Sunday, they're making their first visit ever to Hershey, playing the Stadium with opener Pete Yorn.


    He spoke more about what's currently up with the band:


    You're giving away a live CD to fans who come to your shows this summer -- tell us more about it...


    "It was recorded all over the world. It's a cross-section of old songs and new songs. The idea behind it is to just give something back to our fans who have supported us for the last 10 years. We just thought it would be cooler to do this this way rather than just churning out a money-making live CD. We thought we'll spend a bit of money on this and take the hit and just give it away to people."


    So now it's Yusuf Islam (formerly known as Cat Stevens) saying "Viva La Vida" sounds like one of his songs (first it was Joe Satriani) -- what's going on here?


    "There was another band -- I can't remember their name -- but they were the first one to say that. It's just getting ridiculous now. I can just categorically say I remember when that song was written and how it was recorded. It's kind of flattering. (But) it's just kind of sad. I don't want there to be any ill feeling between us or any other musician. But we'll fight our corner. I'm just hoping it's all going to go away, to be honest -- it's a distraction.


    You're wearing your "Sgt. Pepper's"/French revolution-type jackets on tour -- do you see them as in keeping with the cover art theme of "Viva La Vida"?


    "Yeah, that's exactly it. When we made this record, we wanted (it) to be a very tight visual package with a real identity. We don't want to walk on stage wearing jeans and T-shirts again; we want to make it a bit more theatrical or eventful. We just got a bunch of clothes made up and we got some people down to help us make these clothes. It was actually a lot of fun -- we were sitting there with spray paint and bits of cloth and badges and sewing all these things together."


    The songs on "Viva La Vida" are so closely linked thematically and sonically -- are you continuing that trend for the next one, which you're working on now?


    "We have some songs and ideas we're working on. But how we approach this next record, I think, will be totally different. We can concentrate on the music side of things for a little while -- we'll figure out how everything's going to work visually towards the end of it. But I'm pretty sure once this tour is over, the French Revolutionary costumes will be safely hung up in the closet somewhere!"


    Are you still shooting for a release this year?


    "We did think it would be nice to release something before the end of the year, because that would have meant we would have released five records within a decade. But this tour just kept growing. Saying that, we have achieved quite a lot in the studio and we'll probably continue working when we get back in September. I'm pretty sure nothing's going to happen this year."


    Do you think you'll also continue to experiment with those weird time signatures that made songs like "Death and All His Friends" so incredibly hard to catch on to?


    "You should try playing them! It's terrible because if you drop the beat in your head, then you're just screwed. Trying to pick that back up again is a nightmare. We've been working on a 5/4 signature in the studio recently. We also had one in 7. These are really odd things; they're not very intuitive, but I think they're quite rewarding once you get used to them. It's about time we start busting out the obscure jazz rhythms."


    You're working with Brian Eno again -- how is that partnership different now?


    "We've done two sessions without Chris -- (that) was at Brian's request. Chris is a very dominant figure in the studio and I think Brian wanted to approach things from a slightly different perspective. Of course, he's been writing songs like a madman as usual. But I think Brian really wanted to experiment with music from a textural, rhythmic point of view as opposed to a songwriter's point of view. Which is a typical Brian Eno thing to say, but which is (also) why we love him and want to work with him."


    What's it like playing a place for the first time, as you are here -- do you approach it any differently?


    "We just approach every show in the same way -- we get very excited about going on stage and then when we're up there, we give it 110 percent. We'll be trying to have as much fun with everyone as possible."


    Source: pennlive.com


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