Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends

When all British bands are trying to either sound like U2 or The Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay's Viva La Vida is a breathe of fresh air in the music industry, but the good news stops there. This album is nowhere near their older albums. Granted, at least now they've stopped ripping of other bands (namely Radiohead,U2, Jeff Buckley...) but concentrated more on ripping themselves off, this album sounds like a mash up of Parachutes, A Rush Of Blood To The Head and X&Y. Now how on earth did they manage to do that you ask? Well, they didn't do an amazing job at that. Many songs simply have 2 parts to them(such as Yes!) where the 1st part sounds like a rejected portion of the Rush album and the second a rejected portion of God knows which song... Talk maybe??? The albums starts of with Life In Technicolor.. sorry.. SILENCE...the first 8 -10 seconds is just plain silence!!! I wonder if this was Brian Eno's idea of a joke, cuz it sure wasn't funny. The song in itself sounds like a jam session in Buckland's basement thanks to the shoddy production(does Brian Eno drink and produce albums??). What could have been THE song of the album was cut short to just 2:31 with absolutely no vocals... and there's always the annoying silence at the beginning of the track. And yes, Violet Hill is the best song on the album, and probably the only good song. But on my second and third listen, Strawberry Swing and Cemeteries Of London(a song sounding like it was meant for X&Y with some (completely unnecessary) added acoustic guitar in the background) seem tolerable. Lover's In Japan seemed quite good until U2's Where The Streets Have No Name and Coldplay's own Kingdom Come(X&Y's hidden track), towards the end, popped into mind. Martin's vocals are what gives the song identity of its own. Ah! and there 42!!! The answer to life, universe and the meaning of whatever it was that Douglas Adams wanted it to be the answer to. The end of all pointless conversations that seem to go in circles while questioning the larger questions of life, the bl@&%^ number 42. And the last place I expected to see it was on a Coldplay record. I wonder when Martin lost his imagination, and shouldn't a topic such as this be dealt with on X&Y, oh I'm sorry.. they ripped themselves off this time. Furthermore, Martin's underutilized vocal ability and Buckland's refusal to come up with brilliant riffs and a greater focus on the production is a huge let down. Oh! and the religious lyrics.. blah....

As a whole, the album lacks the warmth of Parachutes, the down to earth professionalism of A Rush Of Blood To The Head or the larger than life stadium rock of X&Y. It lacks the Coldplay sensitivity or the unique 'feel' that shot the band up the music charts. How could you let this happen Mr. Brain Eno?? How???

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