Coldplay has written many memorable songs over the years, and whether you're an aficionado or just a crank-up-the-stereo type of listener, you're probably familiar with at least some of these titles.
The band has skyrocketed in popularity since its inception in 1996. During this time frame Coldplay has also evolved greatly, experimenting with different instruments and styles of music. I and the many faithful Coldplay fanatics around the world have been curious how the band's recent album would turn out.
"Mylo Xyloto" was released on Oct. 24 and the album's artwork features vivid colors of the rainbow and graffiti, which hasn't really been a feature of the band's image.
The first and signature single is "Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall." The song has your attention from the beginning, from its synthesized intro into guitar riffs and its percussion ending. This is a hallmark of Coldplay's attempt to incorporate many diverse elements into their music. Much of it sounds like traditional Coldplay and much of it sounds like mainstream pop.
"Paradise" is the second single. This song initially caught me off guard, as it begins with vibes resembling an Owl City song, subdued and mellow. It also takes cues from "Viva la Vida" due to the orchestral lines. Then "Paradise" suddenly crescendos into a heavy beat replete with a very electronic-sounding cadence. Afterwards it transitions between this and the overtly Coldplay melancholy piano melody. This is possibly my personal favorite and a smart move for the band, because it unites Coldplay's past, present and future, and appeals to fans of all genres.
The next single is "Princess of China," which is a collaboration between the band and Rihanna. To be completely honest, I did not like this song. If you are a Coldplay purist you will not enjoy this song because the idea of a Coldplay-Rihanna duet makes you cringe. This is definitely a departure from earlier albums such as "A Rush of Blood to the Head." However, it is quite a catchy song and if you are more hip-hop or R&B oriented you should check it out. It is interesting to hear Chris Martin sing with a female vocalist.
"Major Minus" was another shocking song to me. I never thought Coldplay would try to imitate the country/western genre, but this song does to an extent, with the twang and strumming of guitars being the main accompaniment. In contrast with the rest of the album, this song has more of a classic feel as if it belongs in the '90s. It feels like a blast from Coldplay's acoustic past, which is welcome to many followers.
"Charlie Brown" would be at home on any alternative rock album. If at this point you are looking forward to a good, old-fashioned Coldplay tune, you've found your match (on a side note, some of the riffs are reminiscent of the Charlie Brown theme. That's obviously a coincidence). This is without a doubt the most comfortable fit on the album, and it doesn't feel like a trial and error song.
Coldplay clearly ventured into new territory with "Mylo Xyloto." There are fragments of the band's previous emotional rollercoaster-like brilliance, but the piano and keyboard almost always play second fiddle to upbeat techno strains. If that is what you appreciate about Coldplay, you will have to get accustomed to the new album.
Otherwise, I would recommend it if you want to hear some great new music.
Dylan Hansen is a senior at Syracuse High School. He likes playing the clarinet and piano, history, and being with friends. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.