Now you see, this is why I do have to contextualize my disdain for X&Y a bit. This is also why music is so cool, because people have different memories attached to different albums/songs, so it hold different significance to everyone.
I first started listening to Coldplay in 2002, just after AROBTTH. Before then, music was not very important to me. My parents were never particularly interested in music, so I never had anyone to "guide" me through music and how awesome it could be. "The Scientist" was the first song I had ever listened to that did something to me. Before, music was just... there. I had such a strong reaction to that song... it was like a light switch being thrown. It was also like the first whiff of a very addictive drug that has persisted to this day-- and I owe that to this band. That's a hefty thing: an integral part of my life's meaning and identity.
I obsessed about the coming of the new album. I waited three long years to hear new Coldplay songs (which to me was something so inconceivably awesome I could barely handle it) and to see them live (which, at that point, was basically my life's goal).
When X&Y came out, I listened to it dozens and dozens of times. I picked out parts of songs I liked and tried mercilessly to convince myself that this album was what I wanted. And it just... wasn't I didn't have one of those "oh shit" moments like I had had with almost every song off the first two. It just felt overly-polished, flat, and boring. Durign that time I listened to that album possibly 100s of times-- all begrudgingly. I just wanted to love it so much, but I didn't and I had to come to terms with the fact that Coldplay kind of let me down. And that's a big stain on what otherwise could be considered a good album.
And years later, I still return time and time again to Rush and Parachutes (and, later, Viva), but X&Y literally never occurs to me. I just never got into my bloodstream like the others.