From the birth of lead singer and composer Chris Martin’s daughter to headlining
Live8 in London, it’s hard to escape the shine of Coldplay. In their third album, X and
Y, the band savours its talent for capturing emotions so simply, easily relating to
most listeners on an emotional level.
Although this album features a more progressive sound than the others, there are
still a couple of slow gems. Songs like “White Shadows” demonstrate how Coldplay
can keep their mostly unique sound while swirling it into something that sounds like
a finely tuned semi-slow rock song. This to many illustrates how X and Y is split into
two musical levels.
The first is an energetic flurry of highs and lows that with Will Champion’s flawless
drumming manage to keep the rhythm high and vibrant as seen in track 5 “Talk.”
Songs like the title track “X and Y” start slow, but the chorus is soothing and creates
the urge to burst into song. The first single, “Speed of Sound” falls into this first
group. Guitar riffs are placed perfectly, Chris Martin’s vocals float above the musical
flashing clouds, powerfully portraying the challenges he and the band have faced of
late in the media’s eye.
The second group is reserved for the tracks that could possibly make the weakhearted
weep just a little. “Swallowed in the Sea” has possibly the nicest lyrics in the
album; the structure of the song is so simple yet so effective. This is the beauty of
some of Coldplay’s songs: simplicity ultimately transforms into pure musical and
With the release of this album however, some may wonder if Coldplay can muster
anything other than what they have produced in the past five years – Ballads and
Sonnets, which seem to be the extent of their musical repertoire. But then again,
what they do, they do very well. It really is quite impressive that Coldplay can make
three albums that superficially sound similar and yet manage nonetheless to conjure
strong emotions each time.