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Rock - Released August 26, 2002 | Parlophone Records Limited

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Sélection du Mercury Prize
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X&Y

Rock - Released June 6, 2005 | Parlophone Records Limited

Distinctions Sélection du Mercury Prize
After Radiohead stubbornly refused to accept the mantle of world's biggest and most important rock band by releasing the willfully strange rocktronica fusion Kid A in 2000, Coldplay stepped up to the plate with their debut, Parachutes. Tasteful, earnest, introspective, anthemic, and grounded in guitars, the British quartet was everything Radiohead weren't but what the public wanted them to be, and benefited from the Oxford quintet's decision to abandon rock stardom for arcane art rock. Parachutes became a transatlantic hit and 2002's sequel, A Rush of Blood to the Head, consolidated their success by being bigger and better than Parachutes, positioning Coldplay to not be just the new Radiohead, but the new U2: a band that belongs to the world but whose fans believe that the music is for them alone. To that end, Coldplay's third album, X&Y -- slightly delayed so it follows Rush of Blood by nearly three years, but that's no longer than the time separating OK Computer and Kid A, or The Unforgettable Fire and The Joshua Tree -- is designed to be the record that elevates Coldplay to the major leagues, where they are at once the biggest and most important band in the world. It's deliberate and sleek, cinematic and pristine, hip enough to sample Kraftwerk and blend in fashionable retro-'80s post-punk allusions without altering the band's core. Indeed, X&Y is hardly a bold step forward but rather a consolidation of Coldplay's strengths, particularly their skill at crafting surging, widescreen epics. But if X&Y highlights their attributes it also brings Coldplay's weaknesses into sharp relief. Forget the fact that they, by any stretch of the imagination, do not rock -- rocking is simply against their nature. They are a meditative band, reflecting on their emotions instead of letting them go in a cathartic blast of noise and rhythm. This isn't a problem -- after all, there have been plenty of great bands that do not rock & roll -- but their terminal politeness does cripple their music, preventing it from being as majestic as its aspirations. Coldplay is well scrubbed and well behaved, possessing a textbook education in classic rock and the good sense to never stretch any farther than needed. They are the perfect middlebrow rock band -- clean, pristine, and rational, seemingly smart since they never succumb to pounding, primal riffs, but also not weird enough to be genuine art rock. It's ambitious, yet its ambitions are modest, not risky, so their ambitions can be fulfilled without breaking a sweat. And since their sweeping yet subdued theatricality does recall the more majestic moments of Radiohead and U2, they have won millions of fans, but another crucial reason that Coldplay have a broad appeal is that lead singer/songwriter Chris Martin never tackles any large issues, preferring to endlessly examine his feelings. Like on Parachutes and Rush of Blood, all the songs on X&Y are ruminations on Martin's doubts, fears, hopes, and loves. His words are earnest and vague, so listeners can identify with the underlying themes in the songs, and his plain, everyman voice, sighing as sweet as a schoolboy, is unthreatening and unassuming, so it's all the easier for listeners to project their own emotions into the song. But for as impeccable as X&Y is -- and, make no mistake, it's a good record, crisp, professional, and assured, a sonically satisfying sequel to A Rush of Blood to the Head -- it does reveal that Martin's solipsism is a dead-end, diminishing the stature of the band. Where U2 is big in sound, scope, ambition, and intent, Coldplay is ultimately big music about small things, and even if X&Y is a strong, accomplished album, its limited, narcissistic point of view is what prevents the quartet from inheriting the title of the biggest and most important band in the world. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Rock - Released June 19, 2000 | Parlophone UK

Distinctions Sélection du Mercury Prize
The London foursome Coldplay were early critics' darlings in their native U.K., showcasing melodic pop on a slew of EP releases and constant live shows just after the spark of the new millennium. Not as heavy as Radiohead or snobbish as Oasis, Coldplay were revealed on Parachutes as a band of young musicians still honing their sweet harmonies. Combining bits of distorted guitar riffs and swishing percussion, Parachutes was a delightful introduction and also quickly indicated the reason why this album earned Coldplay a Mercury Music Prize nomination in fall 2000. Frontman Chris Martin's lyrical wordplay is feminist in the manner of Geneva's Andrew Montgomery, but far more withered. The imagery captured on Parachutes is exquisitely dark and artistically abrasive, and the entire composition is tractable thanks to gauzy acoustics and airy percussion. Coldplay's indie rock inclinations are also obvious, especially on songs such as "Don't Panic" and "Shiver," but it's the dream pop soundscapes captured on "High Speed" and "We Never Change" that illustrate the band's dynamic passion. This basic pop was surely a refreshing effort in the face of big productions like the Spice Girls and Westlife. Parachutes deserved the accolades it received because it followed the general rule when introducing decent pop songs: keep the emotion genuine and real. And Coldplay did that without hesitation. ~ MacKenzie Wilson
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 22, 2019 | Parlophone UK

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Ever since Coldplay started out in 1998, their leader Chris Martin has certainly not shied away from religious references. This habit, however, seems to have reached new heights with Everyday Life, the group’s eighth album. In some cases, the spiritual outbursts are characterised by a distinct (and never over-the-top) gentleness. The simple guitar/voice/birdsong track comes WOTW/POTP to mind, as does the eight-person gospel song performed with no accompaniment (BrokEn). At other points, the musical colour and content are much more lyrical, like in Church, When I Need a Friend, and Arabesque, a call for peace. This last song features Stromae (who sings in French) and the Nigerian saxophonist Omorinmade Anikulapo-Kuti. The other “big” track on the album is Orphans: over Coldplay’s typical soaring pop-rock rhythms and a large choir, Chris Martin carries the torch for forced migrants and refugees. Divided into two parts (Sunrise and Sunset), Everyday Life constantly plays with the idea of yin and yang, something which is evident even on the album cover; the quartet pose like traditional fanfare musicians next to Friedrich Nietzsche! The image appears both the right side up and upside-down. All throughout the album, Coldplay alternates between positive energy (like on the soft voice/piano song Daddy) and anger-filled denunciations of today’s social ills (such as on the rock-guitar track Guns). Towards the end of the album we find a song with an unusual title and lyrics - for a mainstream Western album that is. Entitled بنی آدم (Children of Adam in Arabic) and beginning with a melancholic waltz on the piano, the piece was inspired by Bani Adam, a text written by the Persian poet Saadi Shirazi. Chris Martin’s spiritual, benevolent way of thinking - especially evident on this album – seems to be summed up in just the first two lines: “The children of Adam are members of a whole/In creation of one essence and soul”. © Nicolas Magenham/Qobuz
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Rock - Released December 7, 2018 | Parlophone UK

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You have to be really sure of your concerts to be able to release a fifth live album after only 18 years career time. But stage performances are such a speciality for Coldplay that Chris Martin's group can allow themselves to release this Live In Buenos Aires album rather an eighth studio album, which is being eagerly awaited their fans... Recorded during the A Head Full of Dreams World Tour, this album captures (with amazing sound quality) the powerful 15th of November (2017) show in the Argentinean capital. As per usual, the four Brits play with the constant participation of a totally devoted crowd. U2 often put on these types of shows, Coldplay being their most obvious successors. From the stadium hymn (Viva La Vida) to the early classics (Yellow, Clocks), Coldplay put on a real electric fiesta. © Clotilde Maréchal/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released December 4, 2015 | Parlophone UK

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A seventh studio album from Chris Martin’s & Co.! So, how does one approach a new album when your name is Coldplay and you’re about to celebrate your twentieth anniversary? The answer comes to us in the form of ‘A Head Full Of Dreams’, and what a response it is! Coldplay may surprise many with what is an exciting, colourful, even festive effort here, with the group leader insisting it's a record apart from attempts. "It’s our seventh thing and the way we look at it it’s like the last Harry Potter book.” He explains to the BBC Radio 1. “That’s not to say there won’t be another thing one day, but this is the completion of something ... I have to think of it as the final thing we’re doing, otherwise we wouldn’t put everything into it.” And indeed they have – featuring Noel Gallagher, Avicii, Merry Clayton, Beyoncé, Gwyneth Paltrow (former Mrs. Martin) and even a certain Barack Obama (sampled on a title), ‘A Head Full Of Dreams’ moves through pop ballads, dancefloor tracks and even almost crosses over into R&B. © CM / Qobuz
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Rock - Released May 16, 2014 | Parlophone UK

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Around the time Coldplay's sixth album, Ghost Stories, was scheduled for release, lead singer Chris Martin announced he was divorcing his wife, the actress Gwyneth Paltrow. In light of this news, it's hard not to see Ghost Stories as a breakup record, a romantic confessional written in the wake of a painful separation. Certainly, the album bristles with references to broken hearts and regrets, ruminations on how the past informs the present, its every song infused with an inescapable melancholy, but the album doesn't play like a deep wallow in sorrow. It is soft, even alluring, a soundtrack to a seduction, not a separation. Much of that feel comes from the record's smooth crawl forward, how it's never hurried and always accentuating its good side, but there's also a sense that Martin, or the band in general, is anxious to a hit a reset button, to slowly recede from the artiness of the Eno-encouraged excursions of the late 2000s and reconnect with the sweet, simple band responsible for Parachutes. Like any attempt to revive the past, it's hard to reconcile that those were indeed different times. As majestic as they sounded in 2000, there was no denying Coldplay were a basic rock band, anchored on six strings and rarely finding textures outside of the confines of an amplifier. Fourteen years later, keyboards are at the group's foundation, a significant shift accentuated by their succumbing to a hallmark of modern production: they have a producer for every track. Coldplay may not be forceful, but within their incessant politeness they do have a distinctive personality, one that shines through whatever tricks individual producers bring to the table. Stars that they are, they can afford to enlist EDM sensation Avicii and R&B stalwart Timbaland to color individual tracks (they're responsible for "A Sky Full of Stars" and "True Love," respectively), giving Ghost Stories a fleet electronic facility that undercuts Coldplay's reputation as a dogmatic rock band without ever suggesting the group is adventurous. It's a nifty trick, a record that skirts any accusation of stodginess yet still feels as comforting as a warm bath, which is why Ghost Stories never feels heartbroken. Often, it feels like the lament of the sensitive soul who just had his heart broken but won't let his pain detract him from picking up that pretty girl at the end of the bar. This may seem a contradiction but it also suits a band like Coldplay, who at this stage of their career quite clearly want to be everything to everybody. If your heart is shattered and you want to slide into self-pity, turn here. If you are feeling free and want to woo a new love, turn here. If you want to just enjoy every soft, supple turn a rock band could do, turn here. Coldplay are here for comfort, as Ghost Stories proves time and time again. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Pop - Released June 17, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 22, 2019 | Parlophone UK

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Ever since Coldplay started out in 1998, their leader Chris Martin has certainly not shied away from religious references. This habit, however, seems to have reached new heights with Everyday Life, the group’s eighth album. In some cases, the spiritual outbursts are characterised by a distinct (and never over-the-top) gentleness. The simple guitar/voice/birdsong track comes WOTW/POTP to mind, as does the eight-person gospel song performed with no accompaniment (BrokEn). At other points, the musical colour and content are much more lyrical, like in Church, When I Need a Friend, and Arabesque, a call for peace. This last song features Stromae (who sings in French) and the Nigerian saxophonist Omorinmade Anikulapo-Kuti. The other “big” track on the album is Orphans: over Coldplay’s typical soaring pop-rock rhythms and a large choir, Chris Martin carries the torch for forced migrants and refugees. Divided into two parts (Sunrise and Sunset), Everyday Life constantly plays with the idea of yin and yang, something which is evident even on the album cover; the quartet pose like traditional fanfare musicians next to Friedrich Nietzsche! The image appears both the right side up and upside-down. All throughout the album, Coldplay alternates between positive energy (like on the soft voice/piano song Daddy) and anger-filled denunciations of today’s social ills (such as on the rock-guitar track Guns). Towards the end of the album we find a song with an unusual title and lyrics - for a mainstream Western album that is. Entitled بنی آدم (Children of Adam in Arabic) and beginning with a melancholic waltz on the piano, the piece was inspired by Bani Adam, a text written by the Persian poet Saadi Shirazi. Chris Martin’s spiritual, benevolent way of thinking - especially evident on this album – seems to be summed up in just the first two lines: “The children of Adam are members of a whole/In creation of one essence and soul”. © Nicolas Magenham/Qobuz
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Rock - Released June 17, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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X&Y

Rock - Released June 17, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Rock - Released May 10, 2001 | Parlophone UK

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Rock - Released October 7, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Alternative & Indie - Released July 14, 2017 | Parlophone UK

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A little less than two years after the release of A Head Full of Dreams, Coldplay have brought out these five tracks, presented as an interlude - a kind of companion EP for their last studio album. Chris Martin's band are clearly at a crossroads. Having grown into a kind of millennial U2, Coldplay are hopping between their original DNA, the evolution of the sounds of their times, and a strong propensity for turning out crowd-pleasers. And all this without, clearly, losing their soul. That is surely what drove them to work again with the great Brian Eno (who produced Mylo Xyloto in 2011 and Viva la Vida in 2008) on the song A L I E N S, which is the central piece of Kaleidoscope. On this track, the English band are returning to their roots. The basis of a very contemporary pop music which is at once adventurous and firmly based in a musical consensus. This is a pop which is wrapped up in magical and intriguing sounds that are clearly came from Eno. On All I Can Think About is You, which opens hostilities brilliantly, Coldplay are at their most charming, their most intriguing even, in the form of this hypnotic ballad. As for Miracles (Someone Special), they provide us with a new and perfect mix of pop and R&B, with the help of Atlanta rapper Big Sean. In short, Coldplay are mastering every new genre that they venture out into... A Head Full of Dreams was a particularly snappy, exultant record, colourful and celebratory. "It's our seventh thing,", Chris Martin told the BBC, "and the way we look at it, it's like the last Harry Potter book or something like that. Not to say that there might not be another thing one day, but this is the completion of something." The Kaleidoscope EP shows us the Coldplay of tomorrow while they keep one eye fixed on the past... © CM/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 24, 2019 | Parlophone UK

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Rock - Released June 17, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Rock - Released October 7, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Pop - Released October 7, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 19, 2012 | Parlophone Records Limited

Released nine years after the group's first live outing, the elaborately titled Live 2003, Live 2012, Coldplay's second foray into the concert film/album arena, offers up an inside peek at the band's Mylo Xyloto world tour. As one would expect, the set list favors their fifth studio album, with nine of the fifteen tracks representing, but the band leaves room for past hits like "In My Place," "Viva la Vida," "Yellow," and "Clocks" ("The Scientist" and "Politik" are relegated to the film version). Culled from recordings taken from concerts in Paris, France, Montreal, Canada, and Glastonbury, England, all of which took place (oddly enough) in 2011, the tour featured a 90-minute set and included a dizzying array of visuals, including the usual assortment of stadium-appropriate-sized explosions and video screens, as well as fan-adorned LED wrist bands that pulsed in time with the music, all of which can be experienced by consumers in the comfort of their own homes with the deluxe CD/DVD version of Live 2012. The parental advisory/explicit content sticker that adorns the package is there to protect children and the elderly from being caught off guard by Chris Martin's superfluous, between-song F-bombs. ~ James Christopher Monger
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X&Y

Rock - Released October 7, 2016 | Parlophone UK

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Coldplay in the magazine