Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (2008)

So here we have Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (fastest selling album of all time, apparently), and whilst it's no Red Album, it's nice enough. The melodies are pretty. The band's comittment to writing songs in time-signatures other than 2/4, 3/4 and 4/4 makes for some attractive shuffles and slides. Chris Martin's voice is still a fairly limited instrument, although it has a nicely greenstick top-end. The lyrics are better than on previous Coldplays. 'Yes' and 'Violet Hill' are awfully Beatley, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. But here's the thing: it's on my iRiver. Now, I long ago forgot, if I ever knew, which combination of the iRiver's many buttons alters its play mode. So at the moment, if I don't actively change artists, the album I am listening to repeats on a loop. With most albums that's not a problem; I'm caught up in my writing, and the music is playing, but some small part of my brain registers 'oh, wait, here's "No Hiding Place" again, I've gone right through the album now', so I pause for two seconds to flick the toggle and find something else to listen to. But the last track of Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends fades out riverrunlike to fit neatly with the fade in at the beginning of the first track. This has the unwished-for consequence that I found myself yesterday listening round and round, trapped like a hamster in a wheel, and this caused me to think 'oh no, I'm lost in an endless album.' Niceness is all well and good, but extended interminably it becomes horrible.


RGS said...

I was expecting something... well, I guess more.

I think I'm tiring of Coldplay and their unique 'sound' - it's just too familiar, each song sounds vaguely like the next and nothing really inspires me.

Nice cover for 'Yellow Blue Tibia' btw. Very... pseudo-propaganda.

Max Cairnduff said...

I have to say, you don't make it sound the most interesting of albums. It sounds a bit nice, sort of musical wallpaper, nothing to take offence at but there is part of me wonders what the point is of an album that nobody will take offence at.

I liked the earlier Coldplay stuff (I don't mean before they got commercial, I got into them on the second album which was already commercial), but I thought the album before this one very dull - dinner party music if you know what I mean. This sounds very similar, is that fair?