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New Music: Coldplay

By Flutra Kacuri, January 19 2015 —

British rock four-piece Coldplay have been known for their distinct indie rock sound since they released their first studio album, Parachutes, in 2000. Now the band returns for A Head Full of Dreams, their seventh studio album. ENT_ColdplayCover

The release follows 2014’s Ghost Stories, which took inspiration from lead singer Chris Martin’s divorce with his wife of a decade, featuring haunting lyrics and a minimalistic sound. In contrast, A Head Full of Dreams is an uplifting and colourful romp. The dreary ambience of Ghost Stories is gone as the band instead envelopes the listener in a joyful embrace.

A Head Full of Dreams consists of eleven intricate tracks, many featuring contributions from guests like Tove Lo and Oasis’s Noel Gallagher. But the best guest performance is Beyoncé’s role in “Hymn for the Weekend,” a song destined to please at music festivals. The track embodies the feelings and sounds of a carefree weekend.

The lyrics in “Everglow,” a familiar sounding Coldplay ballad, reflect Martin’s positive outlook on the past. “The light you left me will everglow,” he sings as the song concludes, a seemingly content epitaph for a past relationship.

The band seamlessly incorporates electronic flourishes throughout the album. “Adventure of a Lifetime” is an eccentric, funky tune, and “Amazing Day” features a pleasant, surprising R&B twist.

On a few tracks, however, Coldplay falls into their usual patterns. Further experimentation would have been a welcome addition from a group that’s now known for a repetitive sound.

One notable aspect is the short interlude “Kaleidoscope.” The track incorporates lines from a poem by the 13th century Persian poet Rumi and closes with Barack Obama’s rendition of “Amazing Grace.” Rumi’s poem likens emotions to guests checking in and out of a hotel, an apt and affecting analogy.

That track, along with the album’s cover, reflects the overall mood of the album — uplifting, joyous and kaleidoscopic. A Head Full of Dreams is well-produced and wonderfully bright.

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