Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends
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Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends
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To say there has been a lot of anticipation for Coldplays fourth album, Viva La Vida, is an understatement. Having enlisted legendary leftfield producer Brian Eno, borrowed their album title from a painting by renowned Mexican artist Frida Kahlo and made tantalising remarks about sonic reinvention, the world has been curious (to say the least) to hear what the new Coldplay might sound like. Viva La Vida definitely makes some departures from the bands usual formula, which happens to be one of the most commercially successful rock-pop blueprints of recent years. The plangent chords, emotive melodies, stadium-rock rhythms and universal lyrical concerns remain, but Martin and co. have gone out on several limbs here, incorporating instrumental tracks ("Life In Technicolour"), using subtle North African and Latin elements ("Yes", "Strawberry Swing"), and overhauling previously strict verse-chorus-verse structures in favour of slightly more avant arrangements. The old Coldplay still shine through (see tracks like "Violet Hill" and the title song) but even their classic sound feels more muscular and confident. The bands new flourishes, cosmetic and self-conscious as they may be, are enough to make Viva La Vida a welcome break from the old routine --Danny McKennaPeople en Español
Cuando Coldplay anunció con bombo y platillo que su cuarto disco, bajo el ambicioso título de Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends, vendría acompañado de la producción de Brian Eno, dos escenarios se convertían en posibilidad: o se trataba de su peor álbum o la obra maestra de su carrera. Afortunadamente, la producción de Eno no lleva a la banda británica a imitar a U2 por ningún momento, y en cambio, el grupo liderado por Chris Martin presenta el mejor disco en su trayectoria, ofreciendo un sonido distinto, en el que por fin se alejan del pianito hartante de sus primeros tres álbumes y suenan como lo que siempre prometieron ser: una de las mejores bandas del mundo. "Life In Technicolor," "Viva la Vida," y sobre todo el tema "Lost!," representan a Coldplay en su momento cumbre. --Ernesto Sánchez (People en Español ) See all Editorial Reviews
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Top Customer Reviews
The highly digitized, nearly instrumental "Life In Technicolor" opens the album on a high note with sweeping Middle-Eastern instrumentation and loopy, buoyant beats. Immediately ascertainable is that this is not an album that can safely grace the intercom of the local ShopRite. With hand claps and frothy production values behind a droning, funereal organ, "Lost!" is a poignant, yearning ode to finding salvation and a new lease on life. Accented by just the right amount of electric guitar, the intriguing, atypical track not only rocks and invigorates but finds these talented musicians trying for something new and succeeding, underscoring the album's unexpectedly adventurous direction.
With its soul-searching sentiments and sizzling melody, chugging lead single "Viva La Vida" is the only track that oozes mainstream appeal with its sweeping, gorgeously evocative melody that has landed it at #1 on the Billboard pop charts. In that light, it is classic Coldplay and, amazingly, their first Top 5 hit. Even alternate lead single "Violet Hill," a Top 40 hit, defies radio programmers with its mercurial tempo and deep, adventurous lyrics. Singer Chris Martin, however, has never sounded more confident in his delivery, and the band's playing skills have never been demonstrated so impressively in-studio. These four guys sound truly in-sync, and rather than burying their sound Eno smartly accentuates it, bringing out the essence of the songs.
The plaintive "42" is another awesome outing. After 90 seconds of mellow piano and dark lyrics the song zooms into a succession of production swirls, fast melody swings and snazzy electric guitars. It is not only a marvel, but worth many listens. "Lovers In Japan" is also a winner with its sunny, bristly melody - the way Martin wraps his vocals around the proceedings is a pleasure to hear. The thunderous ode to peace that is "Death and All His Friends" is also a highlight as it closes the album before revealing a hidden track titled "The Escapist," a mellow finale set to the tune of "Life In Technicolor."
The men of Coldplay will likely lose fans who prize clear-cut ear candy over adventurousness, yet will surely gain respect from those who had previously written them off as creators of slick but predictable radio-savvy pop/rock. What's for sure, however, is that this is their most interesting outing to date.
The painting on the album covers is "Liberty Leading the People (La Liberté guidant le peuple)" by French artist Eugène Delacroix depicting the July Revolution of 1830.
I bought this on a whim, running out of money on my Amazon gift card (and I know youv'e had the same experience!). I had already bought 2 tracks by themselves (Viva la Vida and Strawberry swing) and have been an avid fan of Coldplay ever since my friend introduced it to me on a seventh grade field trip to Natural Bridge, VA. So, anyway, I bought the CD, and it came just in time for a Chorus field trip to Kings Dominion. Before I went to bed, I cuddled up with my cat and listened to the CD all the way through. I was BLOWN AWAY.
My cat stayed with me through the sweet, aptly named Life in Technicolour, the dark yet beautiful Cemeteries of London, and Lost! a song which rocketed to my favorite with the first organ chord.
With 42, my cat and I sat in stunned silence, listening to the quiet, peaceful day gradually turn into a storm of instruments and feeling, then calm back down, recreating the feeling of peace, but slightly different, as if the calm, quiet day has turned into night.
The bright, perky intro of Lovers in Japan/Reign of Love caught us off guard, but also captured our hearts. As the busy pianist began to slow down, it was almost as if our world had slowed down as well. Why the two songs were associated as one, I do not know, but they complement each other nicely. I almost had tears in my eyes when the song ended.
Soon after, Yes began. The song was not my favorite on the CD, though I can appreciate the talent of all those who made it possible. The violin was my favorite part of the whole song.
Next was Viva La Vida, one of my personal favorites. I had heard the song several times before, but when it played this time, I closed my eyes and remembered how I felt the first time I heard it.
I was stuck on a crowded, noisy bus on my way to the Natural Bridge. My friend had brought her Nook, which apparently stores music (I don't know. You learn something new every day.). She was about to FORCE me to listen to Viva La Vida, which I had thought was a mariachi song, or something else that I would hate. The bus was stuck in a traffic jam right on a bridge overlooking the most beautiful day I've ever seen. As the violins started, all doubt left my mind. This song was completely amazing. This day was completely amazing. This life was completely amazing. I guess you could say that one Coldplay song changed my outlook on life forever. I looked out on the fog covering the lower branches of the millions of pine trees that stretched out as far as I could see. I never wanted that moment to end.
As I opened my eyes, I saw my cat asleep on my rotating chair. "Even though some moments cannot be recreated," I thought, "I can still make the best of everything." I reached out to pet my cat, who promptly bit me on the hand.
I cradled my hand, moaning in pain as Viva La Vida drew to a close, and Violet Hill began. The song really made me feel the emotions of the singer. The lyrics "If you love me, won't you let me know" still roam my head, playing their melody whenever I stand in silence.
Strawberry Swing was the next song on the CD. I had heard it before, and never really liked it until my friend, the same friend who introduced me to Coldplay in the first place, showed me the music video. Being an artistic person myself, I could really appreciate all the creativity and effort that MUST have gone into making that video. (If you have not seen the video for Strawberry Swing, do yourself a favor and look it up IMMEDIATELY.)
The final song, Death and all His Friends, reminded me of a demented lullaby at first. But as the guitars and other instruments kicked in, I was mesmerized. The quote "No, I don't want a battle from beginning to end, I don't want to cycle and recycle revenge, I don't want to follow Death and all of his friends" is now one that I put all over my personal belongings. Some people write their initials on their things, I write Coldplay quotes. Everyone's special.
As the music faded I awoke my cat, getting ready to stop the CD. Then something happened. I heard the start of Life in Technicolour, and at first I thought the CD had started over. Then I remembered that my CD player WAS NOT ABLE to do that. I was freaking out. Then I heard someone singing, and remembered that Life in Technicolour had virtually no lyrics (Unless you count "Ohhhh" as a lyric) I the realized that I had found the "bonus track". I forgot the title. ...Nope, still don't remember. Oh well. It was still good.
When the CD ended for real, I immediately started it over. It was at this point that my cat bailed. Apparently, he likes music, but not that much! :)
So for anyone reading this review (and to anyone who stuck with me and read this WHOLE THING!!) I would recommend this CD to ANYONE IN THE WORLD!!!!!! (Not kidding!)
Twas VERY good.
And my cat agrees.