Volume 96, Issue 7
Tuesday, September 10, 2002

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Coldplay: a pleasant, warm rush

Coldplay
A Rush of Blood to the Head
EMI

The Rundown: The main thing that's striking about this disc is how fearless it is. If you bought Coldplay's first disc, Parachutes, and were swept away in lead vocalist Chris Martin's soft spoken heartbreak, you might be surprised this time. Although his heart is obviously still broken, Martin's vocals soar with newfound confidence and the album's emotional lyrics are perched atop catchy melodies. The only real complaint is that A Rush of Blood is full of moody songs – songs to make you cry in your room to and music to appreciate on a rainy day when nothing seems to be going right. These songs could potentially haunt you with their sadness and longing even in the best of times.

Key Tracks: This is a solid disc from beginning to end, but some standout tracks include the gorgeous ballad "The Scientist," which has already made at least two Gazette editors cry with its heart-wrenching lyrics. The lead single, "In My Place," borders on gospel with its anthem-like chorus, while the rocker "Clocks" features electronic tinkering and lyrics that could probably compete with classical poetry.

Sounds Like: It's tough to avoid comparing Coldplay to two of rock's major players this time around: Radiohead (before the Kid A debacle unfolded) and U2. Chris Martin's emotion-soaked vocals are reminiscent of a young Thom Yorke and many of the melodies on this disc recall U2's All That You Can't Leave Behind. Keep in mind though, none of this makes Coldplay cheap imitators – it simply makes them as talented as the big guns of rock.

–Maggie Wrobel

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2002 THE GAZETTE