Mylo Xyloto

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Reversible album artwork for Mylo Xyloto

On 12 August 2011, Coldplay announced via their official website that Mylo Xyloto is the new album title for LP5, and that it will be released on 24 October 2011.[1]. The album leaked online on 17th October 2011, two days before its expected debut in Japan, and nine days before its worldwide release.

The album was finished on 9th September 2011 at 2am (UK time) which was confirmed in an official tweet from Roadie #42 who said: "Bumped into Rik Simpson. Tells me: "We finished the album at 2am". It's on this USB stick. Get ready folks! R42" [2]

The official announcement read: Mylo Xyloto was produced by Markus Dravs, Daniel Green and Rik Simpson, with enoxification and additional composition by Brian Eno. The album will be released in digital, CD and vinyl formats. A special limited edition Pop-Up Album version will also be available, which will include a 12" x 12" hardback book containing graffiti pop-up art designed by David A. Carter, vinyl, CD and exclusive content including photographs, excerpts from the studio diary and the band's personal notebooks.

Along with the text came a handwritten message from Chris Martin which wrote: "Hello everybody, we have finished our new album. It's called Mylo Xyloto and it comes out on October 24. We hope you like it and we hope you are well. Love from Chris (and Will, Jonny & Guy & Phil)

On 30 October 2011 Mylo Xyloto was announced as being the fastest selling digital album by the UK Official Charts Company, being the first album to sell over 80,000 digital copies in its first week. It sold 83,000 digital copies.


Songs that missed the cut

What follows is a listing of all known songs written during the Mylo Xyloto sessions that didn't make the cut:



Although fans speculated that the first single would be Christmas Lights (which was released on 1 December 2010) Coldplay's Oracle stated "the song [Christmas Lights] isn't penned for the new album however; it's just a single release that happens to be out this week...", thus denying such rumours. On a later statement the Oracle restated: "Can I categorically say here and now that Christmas Lights is a stand alone song and has absolutely no bearing on what is to follow… The short answer is no."

On 31st May 2011, Coldplay announced that their new song Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall would be released on 3rd June 2011 at 12 pm BST via digital download. The single contained elements of "I Go to Rio" written by Peter Allen and Adrienne Anderson. On 21 June 2011, Coldplay's website announced that the band would release a digital EP containing the songs "Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall", "Major Minus", and "Moving to Mars" on 26 June, but it wasn't confirmed at that point whether any of those tracks would make Mylo Xyloto.

The second single from the Mylo Xyloto era is Paradise and was be released on 12th September 2011.

Charlie Brown, the third single, is released along with the video in January 2012.

Billboard reveal more details of Mylo Xyloto

Online magazine Billboard reported first on the announcement of Mylo Xyloto, alongside the official Coldplay site.

Produced by Markus Dravs, Daniel Green and Rik Simpson, with "enoxification" and additional composition by Brian Eno, Mylo Xyloto is Coldplay's first release since 2008's Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends. Last week in Los Angeles, Billboard heard eight songs recorded for the project, some of which are already familiar to fans from international festival appearances including Glastonbury in the U.K. and Lollapalooza in Chicago. Among those are the relentlessly effervescent first track, Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall; the shimmering, syncopated Charlie Brown; and Major Minus, an ominous, thundering beast of a song with rattling guitars, potent (and rare) Buckland solos, and restless, shifting musical patterns. Those three songs, along with others like the bold anthem Paradise (the first "proper" single from the record, due September 12th); the broad, bass-heavy Up In Flames; and the textured romance of Us Against The World seem destined to appear on the final version of Mylo Xyloto. Others, including the loungey build-up that is Moving To Mars, could potentially not make the record, according to Billboard interviews with Coldplay guitarist Jonny Buckland and frontman Chris Martin.

The band's announcement today reveals Mylo Xyloto will be released in digital, CD and vinyl formats. The 180-gram vinyl edition will include a 12" x 36" poster. A special limited edition Pop-Up Album version will also be available, which will include a 12" x 12" hardback book containing graffiti pop-up art designed by David A. Carter, vinyl, CD and exclusive content including photographs, excerpts from the studio diary and the band's personal notebooks. The "reversible" cover art was just revealed at COLDPLAY.COM. Half of the CDs will be packaged with the full color artwork as the cover while the other 50% will have the CD booklet flipped, showing the silver initials "M X" via a die-cut sheet placed over the color image.

Coldplay manager Dave Holmes tells Billboard that a brief run of arenas in the UK and Europe is planned for December of this year, but the band will begin to tour globally in earnest in support of the record beginning next spring. Coldplay's tour in support of Viva la Vida grossed more than $126 million and moved more than 1.7 million tickets to 94 shows, according to Billboard Boxscore. As they embark on a new cycle, the band's spirits are high. "We've been together long enough that I know how everyone else is feeling, and it makes me excited when I feel the others are excited," Martin tells Billboard. "Maybe I speak too soon, but they don't seem unexcited. They seem pretty fired up. I think we have a lot to prove to ourselves. There's no point in not going for it."

Speaking about the musical direction of the record, Buckland says, "I suppose the theme would be letting loose musically; louder drums, louder guitars, more contrast. Then we wanted to go down to the most intimate moments, then back to the biggest we've ever been. We wanted to contain as many interesting ideas as we could fit into 42-and-a-half minutes."[3]

Also see: Mylo Xyloto: The Billboard Cover Story (20110812)
Also see: 'Laughing Boys' Coldplay article in Q Magazine (September 2011)
Also see: Coldplay feature in Billboard magazine - September 2011 (including Chris Martin Q&A interview)

Brian Eno Influence

Coldplay have declared that producer Brian Eno was almost one of the band as they created new album Mylo Xyloto. Drummer Will Champion singled out Eno's contribution, in an interview with Q Magazine.[4]

"For this album Brian's more of a collaborative writer than a producer," he told Q. "He was with us more in the early stages when the songs were being created, though his influence is everywhere. He's omnipresent, even when he's not in the building he leaves his aura around for inspiration. Brian is a great sewer of seeds whereas Markus us the farmer. He has amazing powers of concentration, way beyond ours."

Meaning of Mylo Xyloto

During an interview with The Sun (UK newspaper) on 12th September 2011, Chris Martin discussed the meaning of the album title, Mylo Xyloto. Quoting The Sun: It is pronounced My-low Zy-letoe... and even the lads admit the title doesn't mean anything. Chris says: "At the moment it seems a bit ridiculous and I accept that. "Something about it feels quite fresh. The title doesn't have any other meaning. I think we're a band with a lot of history now so it's nice to come up with something that doesn't have any history at all. We've had that title for about two years on a board and any other potential titles had to be written next to it. Other ones made more sense but we just liked this one, that's all we can defend it with."

Guitarist Jonny jokes that the process of finding a title was "like naming a child". And Chris — dad to daughter Apple, seven, and son Moses, five — admits he has received a fair bit of banter about his name choices. He says: "I've had trouble with that too. I don't regret that either. It's just a feeling of a fresh start."[5]

Before that interview not much was revealed at the time about the exact meaning of Mylo Xyloto, although there were developments from Coldplay's TV appearance in Paris (on 9th September 2011) which will be televised in October 2011. According to Coldplayers, the band discussed the meaning of Mylo Xyloto, Coldplayer Lu'kaa saying: "Yesterday in an interview in the french TV show Chris explained that Mylo Xyloto was just an imaginary language, with two words: Mylo and Xyloto. It's about creating a now word, from nothing, kind of like Google. How I know it? Well I was there!"

For those of you (most) still trying to figure out the possibly meaning behind this title following The Oracle's confirmation that the title was not randomly made up without meaning, it’s a little unclear — though Latin derivations of “Mylo” tend to suggest that it is about something falling apart. (Meanwhile, “Xyloto” has been used to refer to a family of insects.) Could this be some sort of statement meant to suggest people coming together in the midst of what are difficult times for the world? Until Coldplay speak out about it themselves, we will probably not know for sure. Perhaps there is a tie with the colorful art, which seems to indicate there's beauty in destruction which seems a fitting theme for the darker times we live in.[6]

Even The Oracle remained tight lipped on the answer, recently saying: "This could win the prize for the most asked question in the shortest space of time! All I will say is that if the band are asked it as many times as I have been asked, an answer will appear soon enough! I'd rather not be the revealer on this occasion. I will dispel a couple of suggestions I received though. It's not been randomly made up with no meaning at all nor is it a foreign language. Everyone has been so patient so far with all the teasing that has been going on during the past 3 months so I'm sure we can hang on a little longer..." (August 15th).[7]

Ok I know this might sound a bit far out, but here are my thoughts. I think Mylo Xyloto might be an alien, for various reasons: 1- Aliens, U.F.O., stand to play a big part in the story of MX. I think they are going to be the good guys (light blinking to to tell me it´s alright) and will maybe help the two main protagonists in the end (hopeful transmissions). They might possibly end up flying away with the aliens in the end (up with the birds); 2- It would also tie in with Moving To Mars. Maybe it was not a metaphor at all. Maybe it is about the protagonists moving away from planet earth, after everything has gone up in flames; 3- It would explain the weird name Xyloto, which would be a good extraterrestrial name... I definitely hope there is nothing about alien abductions (scary!) hehe I still think the aliens are friendly and good. I interpret that sentence as just simply meaning that a sign came from outer space to let our heroes know that help is on its way and everything is gonna be alright. [thanks valypan][8]

This from MTV[9]: "Not only does it sound like a clothing-optional beach in the Greek Isles (or a nasty viral disease,) but, because it is largely inscrutable, it also inspires the inner etymologist within me. What, exactly, is the language of origin (Latin?) Googling it just brings up lots of Coldplay Web sites. How, precisely, is it pronounced? (Oh, just scanning the press release now, and apparently it's "my-lo zy-letoe.") And, since we're on the subject, just how many anagrams can you pull from its 10 letters? Of course, it bears mention that whenever you're talking about pronunciation and anagrams, you know you're in the presence of true titular greatness. So, after spending some serious time with a pen and a piece of paper, here's every possible anagrammatic combination I can think of. The word "Ox" comes up a lot. For whatever reason, I'd like to think that makes Chris Martin happy."

First Introduction

Mylo Xyloto as seen registered on the ASCAP database, 24th July 2011
Mylo Xyloto was believed to be a song from the LP5 album era, and possibly the title of LP5 itself, when the name was registered by Coldplay according to the PRS database on 6th July 2011. It is likely that the acronym, MX, is the track that Coldplay use for the opening sequence to their festival dates in 2011.

Commenting on the find, Coldplayer Spike said, "I'm a member of PRS and (as a member) you can search their online database of registered songs. I typed in Chris Martin and looked at all the newly registered work under 'Christopher Anthony John Martin' and a song called 'Mylo Xyloto' was registered on 6th July 2011!!! The writers registered for the song are all of Coldplay and Brian Eno. Wither they actually call the album Mylo Xyloto or not or that might be the lead single (maybe released on October 10th because the first letters of each word being MX)." [10]

Coldplay's Oracle on Mylo Xyloto (MX)

September 5, 2011 - submitted by Daniel, United States of America
Q. Oracle, I have a question regarding the leaking of the album name before it was officially announced: did the leak have anything to do with the decision by the band to reveal it when they did? And how frustrating is it for the boys to see a secret like that come out to light? Are they seeking any damages from the source that leaked the name? Was there (or still is) a reason for the secrecy to begin with? Ok, I know, I said one question and it's more like 4, but I guess that will make up for all the other times my questions have not been answered. With much love, Dan.
The Oracle replies:
It's not a legal issue so no, there'll be no action taken. I know you'd like me to elaborate but it's just the nature of the beast and more than expected these days. I just hope you understand why when pressed I tried to divert people from the name. Why? Well, I can't put it any better than Tom Waits has.[11]

August 23, 2011 - submitted by Jon, United States of America
Q. Hi Oracle, I was wondering if the song played before Hurts Like Heaven during the festival circuit is actually called Mylo Xyloto and was just shortened to MX to avoid spoiling the title of LP5 before the title was officially announced. Thanks!
The Oracle replies:
Ta-da! I wondered when someone would pick up on that after what I had said about it in a couple of answers. MX did indeed mean Mylo Xyloto but at the festivals, as I did mention, it wasn't a full song, just a prelude/introduction to Hurts Like Heaven.

August 18, 2011 - submitted by Federica, Italy
Q. Hello Oracle, I know you won't publish my question but I'll write it down the same. Is there any connection between MYLO XYLOTO and the street artist XYLO (whose name is MYLO)? There are lots of coincidences and not just in the name...
The Oracle replies:
Nope, no connection at all. The band have never heard of him. I checked him out and it's purely a coincidence that his name is Mylo (there are plenty around) as is the fact he's into graffiti.

August 18, 2011 - submitted by Ashley, United States of America
Q. Dear Oracle, There's this ridiculous rumor that 'Mylo' is an Egyptian derivative of the name Miley and 'Xyloto' comes from the Greek term for Tombs of the Kings which is located on the island of Cyprus. When you combine both of them it'll say "Miley Cyprus." In other words, "Miley Cyrus." And according to this article, the album was dedicated to her. So, please Oracle, can you tell all the Coldplayers out there that this is not true? Thanks in advance!
The Oracle replies:
I most certainly can tell you all that this is not true - once I have stopped laughing hysterically that is! I have no idea who dreams this stuff up but by golly, they really should find more interesting ways to spend their time. Ha, ha, ha!

August 18, 2011 - submitted by Valentina, Denmark
Q. Dear Oracle, On the album official announcement written by Chris, there is a little drawing with two words just after the phonetic spelling of Mylo Xyloto. What does the drawing represent and what does it say?? I can't make it out...
The Oracle replies:
It says under 1 roof and it's written under, er, a roof!

August 15, 2011 - submitted by Bella, United Kingdom
Q. Dear Oracle, What does Mylo Xyloto mean?
The Oracle replies:
This could win the prize for the most asked question in the shortest space of time! All I will say is that if the band are asked it as many times as I have been asked, an answer will appear soon enough! I'd rather not be the revealer on this occasion. I will dispel a couple of suggestions I received though. It's not been randomly made up with no meaning at all nor is it a foreign language. Everyone has been so patient so far with all the teasing that has been going on during the past 3 months so I'm sure we can hang on a little longer...

August 15, 2011 - submitted by Sam, United Kingdom
Q. Dear Oracle, I read on the Daily Mirror and NME that Chris Martin is saying that Mylo Xyloto may be the last album for the band and this time he means it. Why is this so? As a big fan of Coldplay I am very sad about this. Since you know Chris and the rest of the boys, do you think that it is likely that the band splits up at this point of its career? I wish that you could pick up my question and reply to it!! Thanks! Sam
The Oracle replies:
I haven't read the article but I would draw your attention to the word "may". What Chris said or meant - whether taken out of context or not - is familiar to many. Anyone who has been a fan for a very long time will know that this kind of quote is not uncommon when an album is completed. Chris has said this kind of thing before, ooh at least 3 times I'd say. Even if a band intend to be together forever, not one single person in the world could possibly know when or if an album is the last one until song ideas are conceived, written, recorded and deemed good enough. That's not to say that Mylo Xyloto* will be their last album but at this moment in time it is the only album that we're all thinking about. Let's not rush the future or try to see into it, let's enjoy the present - after all, it is a gift. * You have no idea how great it is to finally be able to say the name of the album!

August 11, 2011 - submitted by Laura, United States of America
Q. Dear Oracle: I read somewhere that the release date of Coldplay's new album is going to be 10/10 or October 10th. I'm pretty sure this person just made that up based on the fact that MX in roman numerals is 1010. It does sound probable though. Is there any way this is true? Thanks! much love :)
The Oracle replies:
MX, as you say, means 1,010 in roman numerals but that's not ten ten to me; it's one thousand and ten which is completely different. The album isn't out on 10/10 or any other combination of those numbers. MX has nothing to do with numbers.

Forum Links

  • The Many Mystery Messages Of Mylo Xyloto [12]
  • Mylo Xyloto sub-forum [13]