Latin America Tour 2007

Postcard from Will Champion

Coldplay announced on December 1st, 2006 a Latin American tour for the beginning of 2007. The band visited Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Mexico, playing at much smaller capacity venues than on their recent Twisted Logic world tour, which finished in July 2006.

The band were writing material for their fourth album and keen to play some intimate shows to try out their new songs. Having received such a phenomenal response to their last Latin American trip in September 2003, they personally chose to return to the region.


Contents

Tickets


Tickets went on sale for the Latin regions on these dates:


  • Santiago (Espacio Riesco), Buenos Aires (Gran Rex Theatre) and Sao Paolo (Via Funchal) went on sale on December 4th, 2006.

  • Mexico City (National Auditorium) tickets went on sale on December 6th, 2006.

Support Acts


Coldplay announced the support acts for their Latin American shows on February 8th, 2007. They were as follows:

  • Mar 3,4 @ Mexico City | Volovan | http://www.myspace.com/volovanmty
X&Y Latin America Tour Edition

X&Y Latin America Tour Edition


Coldplay produced a limited edition of X&Y to coincide with their Feb-Mar 2007 mini Latin American Tour.

The album is red double-sided which consists of all the tracks from X&Y, together with a bonus DVD containing all the released B-Sides , together with the released singles on video and also a track by track interview with the band.

Release date is 30th January 2007. The full tracklisting is below.

Tracklisting:

Disc. 1
1. Square One
2. What If
3. White Shadows
4. Fix You
5. Talk
6. X&Y
7. Speed Of Sound
8. A Message
9. Low
10. The Hardest Part
11. Swallowed In The Sea
12. Twisted Logic
13. +

Disc. 2
1. [Audio Only Section] Things I Don’t Understand
2. Proof
3. The World Turned Upside Down
4. Pour Me [Live at The Hollywood Bowl]
5. Sleeping Sun
6. Gravity
7. [Video Section] Speed Of Sound
8. Fix You
9. Talk
10. The Hardest Part
11. X&Y Track by Track Interview

Chile


The British rock band performed three concerts in Santiago, Chile. They stayed at the local Hyatt Hotel, were they travelled to immediately from “Arturo Merino Benitez” Airport, at around 05:30h GMT today, in a non-stop flight from London UK.

There were no clues about the day and the time they will be doing the sound check, previous to the show the band are held al Espacio Riesco, this February 14,15 & 16.

The band support team was informed to be over 25 people.

Coldplay, were in Chile until Saturday 17th, from where they did their last leg of the Latin American “Twisted Logic Tour” in Argentina (February 20,21 & 22); Brazil (Febraury 26,27 & 28) and Mexico City (March 3th and 4th).

In Chile, there is great interest from fans, despite the high cost of the tickets (from USD80 to 161), to the point that there were no expensive tickets available, and there were only a few left for the 15th Feb show.

Brazil


Mexico


Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin said Sunday his band is working on a new album featuring what he called a quintessential song that everybody should hear “before we die.”

Martin and his band spoke hours before the final concert of a Latin American tour that took them to Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Mexico.

The band said it plans to return to the studio after a two-year hiatus to record an album that will have a different sound from “X&Y,” which has sold more than 2 million copies since it was released in 2005. Coldplay’s label, Capitol Records, is part of London’s EMI Group PLC.

“I think for a long time people felt like we were a band in black-and-white, and now we feel like because we have this incredible job, now we can do whatever we like and try all kinds of new things,” Martin said.

He added that the record will include what could be Coldplay’s best song yet.

“In order for us to get excited about a new album, we have to have one song that we feel like everybody has to hear … before we die, otherwise we’ll be terribly depressed,” Martin said. “So luckily with this new record we’re going to make, we have that one song.”

“I can’t tell you about it, but it’s basically genius,” he joked.

Martin, who celebrated his 30th birthday on a Mexican beach last week, also said he is proud of Coldplay’s activism to raise awareness about free trade practices around the globe and support poor farmers in developing countries.

Martin is a spokesman for the British aid group Oxfam’s “Make Trade Fair” campaign, and Oxfam volunteers provide information on free trade and distribute petitions at Coldplay’s concerts.

The singer said he has hope for the future with less than two years left in President Bush’s term. “I think we’re all excited, everyone in the world is excited about the American elections next year,” he said. “Sometimes it’s easy to give up all hope.”

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Lovers In Japan

Lovers in Japan single cover

Lovers In Japan is a track included on Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends and is the fourth single from that album.


Contents

  • 8 Lyrics

Lovers In Japan (Osaka Sun Mix)


The single version of the song, known as the “Osaka Sun Mix”, also features on Coldplay’s Prospekt’s March EP. On Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends, the song is combined with another, separate song, Reign Of Love, in the same track. The only difference between the album version and the Osaka Sun Mix is the inclusion of additional backing vocals by Chris Martin, heard during 1:45 – 1:53, and some different musical arrangements, beginning at the 2:56 mark. Additionally, there is an acoustic version of the song that appears on the Lovers in Japan single, as well as a leaked demo version of the song that is much faster, with some alternative lyrics.


Tracklisting

  1. “Lovers in Japan (Osaka Sun Mix)” – 3:57

Release


Coldplay released Lovers In Japan in the US on 4th November 2008 as the fourth single of their fourth album. The song is also featured in the band’s Prospekt’s March EP from 2008, entitled Lovers in Japan (Osaka Sun Mix), when it was released on 21st November 2008. Chris Martin in discussion about the song, said: “We’ve been playing it live better than it is on the record. So the live version has informed this Osaka Sun version, which is just a bit more lively.”

Lovers In Japan appeared on Billboard’s Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks chart in the peak position of 32 on 29 November 2008. The track peaked at number 10 on Billboard’s Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart. The song appeared in Billboard’s Pop 100 chart, in the peak position of 65. Although the song did not chart on the UK Singles Chart, as it was released as a radio-only song in the US, the song peaked at number 41 on the Japan Hot 100 Singles chart.


Reception


Critics were positive towards the song. Alexis Petridis of The Guardian review of the album, wrote: “Chris Martin’s melodies … shine: even his loudest detractor could hardly deny his way with a tune as evidenced here by ’42’ and ‘Lovers in Japan’.”

Evan Sawdey of PopMatters noted that the song is “stunning, jaw-dropping highlight”. He added that “Martin pounds away at a bouncy toy-piano melody … leading into a chorus where guitarist Jonny Buckland gets to unleash what might be the catchiest guitar riff he’s written… (and yes, he absolutely bathes in the moment).”

Joey Guerra of the Houston Chronicle added that Lovers In Japan was a “joyous, romantic anthem that combines wistful rock riffs and gorgeous piano“. He also wrote that the song is one of the disc’s best moments. Jed Gottlieb of the Boston Herald reported that the piano sound in Lovers In Japan/Reign Of Love hints at the 1968 song “Lady Madonna” by The Beatles, “before taking a neo-classical, Chopin-does-Britpop route”.

Jeff Crawford of the City Messenger wrote, “…Lovers In Japan and Strawberry Swing rank among the band’s best work“.

Josh Hathaway from The Plain Dealer wrote that Lovers In Japan/Reign Of Love works “in just the opposite direction with ‘Lovers’ playing like an update of vintage Simple Minds, an almost anthem that never fully takes flight, before giving way to the gentle ‘Reign of Love'”.


Music video

Chris Martin light paints the word “Lovers” in the music videoA music video for the single, directed by Mat Whitecross in London, was released on 31 October 2008 through iTunes Store, where it was available free for a week on the American and Canadian iTunes. The video utilises the “Osaka Sun Mix” version of the song.

The first half of the video shows the band playing in a courtyard while each member writes certain words from the lyrics in glowing neon on the screen. During the chorus, the camera spins around in circles to go along with the lines “They are turning my head out”. The video ends with butterfly-shaped confetti raining on the band, as happens when each chorus is played at live concerts, along with the words “The End” on the screen behind the band, as they take a bow.


Background


When asked about the development of the song, during a track-by-track reveal, Will Champion said: “We were in a studio in New York, this place called the Magic Shop, and it had this thing called a tack piano there, which sounds like an old honky-tonk piano, where you put little tacks in the hammers, so it sounds like more of a harpsichord almost. And so we wanted to use that kind of sound, but we didn’t have a tack piano, so rather than sample it, we went and bought an old piano from the shop up the road from our studio, and we bought a load of tacks, and me and Guy and Jon spent a couple of hours pushing tacks into the piano hammers.”

Lovers In Japan is a more upbeat, less dense number that sees Martin feeling less oppressed. Key lyric: “I have no doubt one day the sun will come out.”

Entertainment Weekly printed an article on Coldplay and the new album with a new song slant on some of the songs – from the band’s perspective. Here is the excerpt of Lovers In Japan: “No one associates romance with Japan,” says Martin of the song that most resembles the familiar wistful Coldplay style. “Everyone thinks Japan is just about Hitachi and neon signs, but every time we’re there, we see these amazing sunrises. It’s very sexy.”

On the album, Lovers in Japan shares track #5 with another, seperate song, Reign Of Love.

An acoustic recording of the song was given away exclusively to those who pre-ordered the album through iTunes.


The Oracle on Lovers In Japan


August 30, 2012 – submitted by Jacqueline B , United States of America

Q. Hello Oracle!

Could you confirm for me whether or not part of the Lovers in Japan music video was shot at 33 Portland Place in Marylebone, the same place used in The King’s Speech as Lionel’s office?

Thanks!

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Talk

Yes

Talk” is a song recorded by Coldplay and is the fifth track on their third album X&Y, released in June 2005. The song was released as the third single from that album in December 2005 and it was a substantial hit across the world. “Talk” entered the UK Singles Chart at #10, and elsewhere in the world its success varied: it reached #1 in the Netherlands and the top five in Canada. Both the song and its ‘Thin White Duke’ remix have been nominated for the 2007 Grammy Awards.


Contents

    • 7.2 Unreleased/First Version

Background


Coldplay received permission from the electronic music band Kraftwerk to use the main riff from their song “Computer Love” (German basic version: “Computerliebe”), from their 1981 studio LP Computer World (German basic version: Computerwelt), for “Talk”, replacing Kraftwerk’s synthesizers with guitars. Subsequently mash-up artist RIAA combined “Computer Love” with “Talk” to create the song “Kraftplay”. Presciently the I Love Music website had humorously imagined the results of such a collaboration[1] several months before it appeared.

The band recorded three separate versions of “Talk”; the one found on X&Y was based on an early cut of the song. A newer version of the track (with a different set of lyrics) was leaked onto the internet in March 2005. “Talk” was originally intended to be a b-side for the single “Speed of Sound” before becoming the last addition to X&Y’s track listing.

This song was performed live at the 2005 MTV Europe Music Awards on 3 November in Lisbon, Portugal and live at the 2006 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles, United States.

“Gravity”, the single’s b-side, was originally written by Chris Martin for the British band Embrace, and is found on their album Out of Nothing. The song charted at number seven in the UK. Many editions of the single also included “Sleeping Sun” as a second b-side.

The song was also used as the basis of a downloadable hoax track entitled “Talk to David” [2] produced as an April Fools Day prank by the UK The Guardian newspaper. This featured lyrics purporting to give support to Conservative opposition party leader David Cameron [3].


Chart performance


By mid-October, “Talk” had been added to the playlists of twenty-six U.S. alternative rock stations. Stations that offered early airtime to “Talk” include KTCL (Denver), WEND (Charlotte), KNDD (Seattle), KUCD (Honolulu), and WFNX (Boston).

A month later, “Talk” was being supported by sixty-one U.S. alternative rock stations. On 18 November 2005, the single debuted at number thirty-two on the U.S. Modern Rock Tracks chart. “Talk” peaked at number five on the chart, a significant improvement from the performance of “Fix You”, and matching that of “Speed of Sound”.

On 31 December 2005, it “bubbled under” the Hot 100. It finally charted on the Billboard Hot 100 on 25 February 2006 and peaked at number eighty-six.

By then, the song had gained additional exposure in other genres. “Talk” reached number ten on the Adult Top 40, which covers Hot Adult Contemporary music. It topped the Hot Dance Club Play chart as “Talk (Junkie XL/Francois K/J. Lu Cont Mixes)”.

It reached number four on the Canadian Singles Chart in late 2005 and topped the Canadian BDS Airplay Chart for four weeks in early 2006.


Music video

The “Talk” music video is a homage to B-grade sci-fi movies.

The music video for “Talk” was helmed by director/photographer Anton Corbijn. Corbijn had previously directed the video for “All These Things That I’ve Done” by The Killers.

Filming took place on November 5 and November 6 at Ealing Studios, London, just before the band began an European leg on the Twisted Logic Tour. The black-and-white clip invokes a B-movie science fiction theme, with imagery ranging from a flying saucer to 3D glasses.

It seems the entire video can in fact be viewed in three dimensions using Anaglyphic 3D glasses like the ones worn by the band. Due to the red (left eye) and blue (right eye) edges that define a stereoscopic image. However the effect is subtle and best appreciated with a high resolution version.

The main plot line of the music video features Coldplay as astronauts landing on an alien planet, where they re-activate a dormant robot. The robot in the video bears a strong physical resemblance to the original Marvin the Paranoid Android from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy television series. (The robot also more closely resembles the robot from The Beastie Boy’s song Intergalactic, and also possibly the robot Torg from the 60’s B-movie Santa Claus Conquers The Martians) A previous Coldplay track, “Don’t Panic” also referenced the series with its title. At one point of the clip, subtitles present the lyrics of the song spelt backwards just like in the video for “No Surprises” by Radiohead. At the very end of the video, there is whistling that resembles The Clangers.

The video was extremely popular in Poland. It spent thirteen weeks at number one on MTV Poland Top 20 Chart and 47 out of 50 days (because it was retired) at number one on TRL Poland.

The message Make Trade Fair was in X&Y code as the robot’s controls in black and white.

c3oL0AOO_J0

The Oracle on Talk


May 23, 2013 – submitted by James, United States of America

Q. My brother and I are convinced that Talk was a credits song in a movie. Specifically, we thought it closed out one of the Transformer movies, but after reviewing the dvds that is not the case. Was it in the select pre-release movie theater version of Transformers or in a different movie? ‘We are lost and incomplete’ without this information.

Thanks,

The Oracle replies:

Talk definitely didn’t appear in any of the Transformer movies but then I don’t recall it being used either in any film or as the credits rolled.

I wonder if perhaps it has been used in a trailer much like Paradise was used in previews for Life of Pi but not actually featured in the film…

January 2, 2013 – submitted by Faiz, United Kingdom

Q. Dear Oracle,

When the robot in the Talk music video wakes up (2:22), it looks like there’s text at the bottom of the video. It’s covered by the playback bar so I can’t read what it is.

Would you, in your infinite wisdom, know what this says?

Thanks, Faiz

The Oracle replies:

The text is the lyrics with the words running in the correct order from left to right but each word is backwards.

It says:

LLEW I LEEF EKIL ER’YEHT GNIKLAT NI

A EGAUGNAL I T’NOD KAEPS

DNA ER’YEHT GNIKLAT TI OT EM

Which of course is:

Well I fell like they’re talking in a language I don’t speak and they’re talking it to me.

July 26, 2012 – submitted by Katy, Brazil

Q. Hey! I’ve heard two versions of the music Talk. Which one is correct or official?

One of them starts with “Oh brother I can’t, I can’t get through

I’ve been trying hard to reach you” and the other one starts like “Under the great north star, try to work out where you are”. Kisses

The Oracle replies:

The one that features on the album X&Y (& the single version) is the approved, official version that the band want you to hear.

There were 3 different recordings that the band did so none are incorrect but they chose their favourite of the 3 to release (The “Oh brother” one).

September 3, 2010 – submitted by Mark, United Kingdom

Q. Will Coldplay ever play this version of Talk live? I would do anything for that! It’s incredible and almost everybody agrees!

Thanks.

The Oracle replies:

It’s extremely doubtful. This wasn’t the version the band decided on for inclusion on X&Y. Although they gave it a techno re-vamp for the Viva tour, it’s not likely to appear in the guise of one of the discarded variants. I love it too though it has to be said but then I like all incarnations of the song; there were a few.

June 7, 2010 – submitted by Mike, United States of America

Q. Are Coldplay going to go back to playing the album versions of Talk, GPASUYF? We fans miss those.

The Oracle replies:

Well I’m sure many fans do miss those original versions but there were a heck of a lot who loved hearing newer updated versions on the last tour! If those songs make it onto any future tour’s set list it would be very doubtful they’d remain the same as for the Viva tour anyway. The same could be said for the acoustic songs also…

April 7, 2010 – submitted by Kyle, United States of America

Q. To Mr./ Mrs. Oracle

To say the least, I’m way behind. What is the message that appears in text at the bottom to the music video Talk?

The Oracle replies:

The text is the lyrics reversed. Starting at 2:23, “Well I feel like they’re talking in a language I don’t speak and they’re talking it to me”.

July 22, 2009 – submitted by Shelby, United States of America

Q. Oracle,

At the last two Coldplay shows I’ve been to Coldplay performed a really cool remix of God Put a Smile Upon Your Face and Talk. Is there anywhere I can find that? (By the way Coldplay put on the best show ever).

The Oracle replies:

They like to rework some tracks for the live shows, the above 2 are an example, but there’s no plan to release any of the versions that may appear.

October 15, 2008 – submitted by Robin, Germany

Q. Dear Oracle:

Here in my Coldplay sheet book there’s alwas a line under the title of the song wich says: words and music by … [the 4 coldplay members]

But as I see here, words & music for “Talk” by Guy B.,Chris M., Karl Bartos, Jon B., Will C., Emil Schult & Ralf Huetter.

Who are those three other guys? Mr. Huetter and Mr. Schult even seem to have German names…

Thank you a lot =)

The Oracle replies:

They are indeed German names;, they are members of German band Kraftwerk. The main riff of Talk comes from the Kraftwerk song Computer Love. They gave their permission to use it but are of course credited with writing it.


Lyrics


Album Version


Oh brother I can’t, I can’t get through
I’ve been trying hard to reach you ’cause I don’t know what to do
Oh brother I can’t believe it’s true
I’m so scared about the future and I wanna talk to you
Oh I wanna talk to you

You can take a picture of something you see
In the future where will I be?
You can climb a ladder up to the sun
Or a write a song nobody has sung
Or do something that’s never been done

Are you lost or incomplete?
Do you feel like a puzzle, you can’t find your missing piece?
Tell me how do you feel?

Well I feel like they’re talking in a language I don’t speak
And they’re talking it to me

So you take a picture of something you see
In the future where will I be?
You can climb a ladder up to the sun
Or write a song nobody has sung
Or do something that’s never been done
Or do something that’s never been done

So you don’t know where you’re going and you wanna talk
And you feel like you’re going where you’ve been before
You tell anyone who’ll listen but you feel ignored
Nothing’s really making any sense at all, let’s talk
Let’s talk, let’s talk, let’s talk.


Unreleased/First Version


Under the great north star
Try to work out where you are
In the silence of the sea
I don’t know where I’ve been

In the future, in the past
Going nowhere much too fast
When I go there go with me
When I go there go with me

‘Cause I don’t know where I’m going but I wanna talk
I feel like I’m going where I’ve been before
And I wanna talk

Take a picture of
Something that you’re not sure of
Bring it back to show me
But I don’t know what I see

In the future, find a home
Getting nowhere on your own
Got to find your missing piece

‘Cause you don’t know where you’re going but you wanna talk
You feel like you’re going where you’ve been before
And nothing’s really making any sense at all
You’ll tell any one who’ll listen that you feel ignored
Let’s talk, let’s talk
Do you wanna talk?

I’m up in the part of the throne
I’m trying to sing a song
In a language I don’t speak
I try but I can’t get through
I’m trying to get to you
But you’re difficult to reach

Won’t you talk to me…

So you don’t know where you’re going but you wanna talk
You feel like you’re going where you’ve been before

Let’s talk, let’s talk…
Let’s talk, let’s talk…

   

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Charlie Brown

‘Charlie Brown’ single artwork – as discovered on 24th November 2011

Charlie Brown is a track from Mylo Xyloto. It was released on 3 February 2012 according to Coldplay.com’s recordings section. It was rumoured on 24 November 2011 on some European music websites that Charlie Brown would be the third single from Mylo Xyloto. Both Swiss music website Hitparade[1] and respected Dutch radio station website 3FM[2] were the first websites to publish the cover art before any official announcement was made.


Contents

  • 7 Lyrics

Development of Charlie Brown


According to the band, Charlie Brown was the first song recorded during sessions for the band’s then-upcoming fifth studio album, with the intention of being included on what later became Mylo Xyloto (which, under an unofficial, working title, was simply known as LP5 at the time). The song takes its name from the fact that it originally included lyrics inspired by the comic strip Peanuts, whose protagonist was a young boy named Charlie Brown. During the writing and recording sessions of Mylo Xyloto, the song took on other names, such as “Cartoon Heart” and “Cartoon Head”, before eventually being titled Charlie Brown.

Furthermore, during an online interview with the Sunday Herald Sun (Australia)[3], Coldplay described the centrepiece of Charlie Brown in the plan for Coldplay’s fifth record. The article wrote: “Such was the band’s ambition that the initial plan was to make two albums – one a more subdued, mostly acoustic affair, possibly as a soundtrack to an animated film, and the other a more upbeat, dance-influenced effort. The problem was that one kept intruding on the other and the band realised that creating some kind of false distinction between the projects was in fact holding them back. “We have a song called Charlie Brown, which was the centrepiece of this other record we started first,” says Martin. “We were playing the riff on an accordion and Guy came in one morning and said ‘I’m afraid I have to put my foot down. I don’t want to speak out of turn, but I will not allow this song to be played on an accordion – that has to go in with the Mylo bunch’. So then we thought – let’s just make one album.”

Reviews

The Official Charlie Brown symbolIn the article by Q Magazine published on 10th October 2011 entitled “First Impressions of… Coldplay’s Mylo Xyloto”[4] they wrote: “The standout from their headline summer slots sounds even monumental on record; Charlie Brown is one of the best things Coldplay have done. Jonny Buckland’s hypnotic guitar lines lead the way, the band channeling Joshua Tree-era, the heady holler-alongs of Arcade Fire and a teeny bit of Sigur Ros stargazing as the song launches into its adrenaline-veined climax. Whilst the music is wonderfully overblown, Chris Martin keeps the vocals cool and calculated, singing of “taking the car downtown to where the lost boys meet”, which might be about nipping to Spar on Hampstead High St But probably isn’t.”

The Celebrity Cafe wrote on 27th January 2011: “Remember the Peanuts’ Charlie Brown? You could count on him to put a smile on your face. Coldplay named their latest single after that youthful but strong character, and painted a similar picture. In the context of their fifth album Mylo Xyloto, “Charlie Brown” fits perfect as a song that tackles “all the boys, all the girls, all the madness that occurs” in the world. As a radio song, it is a lively, upbeat anthem with lyrics anyone can relate to and sonically is one of their best songs yet. The album discusses the highs and lows of life and relationship, and this is definitely a high, even if it comes out of defeat. “When they smashed my heart into smithereens/ be a bright red rose come bursting the concrete,” croons Chris Martin. The grandiosity of the music supports its uplifting lyrics, but Chris Martin does not forget to control the music with his voice, never being outdone. That formula has been a successful one throughout the years for Coldplay, and is followed to near perfection here. The way this song is will be received by the mainstream is yet to be determined, but what is a fact is that Coldplay will help anyone who listens start their year off with a bang. ‘Light a fire, a fire, a spark, light a fire, a flame in my heart. We’ll run wild; we’ll be glowing in the dark.'” [5]

on 24th March 2012, Unreality Shout gave the single a perfect 5/5 stars, publishing: (5/5 stars): It’s not hard to trace the progression of Coldplay as they venture into what is widely considered and equally as widely misinterpreted as “going commercial” for their fifth album, ‘Mylo Xyloto’. On an album themed to anti-establishmentarian revolutionaries with a fiercely anti-War message buried under your typical Coldplay fanfare, ‘Viva la Vida’s central track, the luxuriously colourful, wide-eyed spectacle of ‘Lovers In Japan’ was everything (in conjunction with ‘Strawberry Swing’) that brought the rest of the album’s dark tones to that pivotal, obligatory feeling of breaking through the clouds that personifies Coldplay’s latest offering, ‘Charlie Brown’. Further research would tell you that ‘Lovers In Japan’ was the last song recorded for the band’s fourth album, and simply listening to it would tell you that they had already started to move away from the lead-heavy melodies of songs like ‘Lost!’ and ‘Violet Hill’ and that it merges seamlessly into the vibrant incandescence of their fifth album…

A Charlie Brown physical CD releaseBut it’s still a misinterpretation to brand Coldplay’s recent efforts as “going commercial” – they’ve always struck a chord as somewhere between high-brow commercialism (see: ‘Fix You’, ‘Speed of Sound’) and left field alternativeness (see: ‘God Put A Smile Upon Your Face’, ‘Strawberry Swing’) – commercial isn’t something new to Coldplay, it’s always been there. And, quite contrastingly to popular belief, this isn’t something that’s hindered them here. In terms of sound, ‘Charlie Brown’ recalls the yangqin-lead ‘Life In Technicolor II’ in it’s surging, triumphant refrain; a wonderfully spacious sound that resonates with a sense of glorious accomplishment and manages to counteract the dulcet tones of Martin, whose frequently pathos-less whining dwindle the very soul of band’s work in the past. Thankfully though, Martin overcomes the urge to slow down the pace too much when the first verse arrives, and it’s also refreshing to hear lyrics that carry some weight as something relatable yet transcendent to something imaginatively fantastical at the same time. It’s a crying shame that Coldplay’s best material isn’t the stuff that sells. ‘Paradise’ did well for the promotion of ‘Mylo Xyloto’ despite never actually raising any pulses until the dizzying, sky-scraping falsetto and football chants kicked in. Contrastingly, ‘Charlie Brown’ needs no warm-up period, and there’s no moment where the song’s momentum lapses, even in the quieter verses, thanks to Buckland’s effervescently chiming riff. A true testament to it’s sparkling resilience is that, even when otherwise hackneyed Coldplay lyrics like “All the boys, all the girls/All that matters in the world” roll around, the song still hurdles from strength to strength, swirling up a rousing finale to quite possibly the best thing Coldplay have ever recorded. [6]

And there’s was this from The Student Newspaper, another positive review giving the song 4/5 stars: “Despite the fact that Coldplay are musical veterans, their latest single is fresh, exciting and sounds young and carefree. Continuing their new electro/soft-rock sound, “Charlie Brown” is a floor-filler with heart, featuring a riff that will be stuck in your head for days. The best part is, you won’t actually mind. Amid the rousing lead guitar and spangly electro-effects, Chris Martin’s voice is as distinctive as ever, harping back to the band’s earlier days. Yet this upbeat track symbolises their staying-power, proving that they’re not afraid to keep evolving and experimenting without losing that characteristic Coldplay essence. Guaranteed to fill both dance floors and stadiums, this track will make you want to ditch your studying, grab some mates and dance across the Meadows in the sun. If you’re looking for a summer anthem, this might just be it.” [7]

Finally, Digital Spy also gave Charlie Brown a 5/5 star rating: “Coldplay’s Chris Martin may have a regrettable sense of humour when it comes to early morning chatshows and joking about the title of their latest album Mylo Xyloto, but thankfully and rightfully that’s where the criticism stops. It may be a fact that people from different parts of the world might struggle with the record’s pronunciation, but should they really care when it contains gems like new single ‘Charlie Brown’? “I stole a key and took a car downtown where the lost boys meet/ I took a car downtown and took what they offered me to set me free,” Martin confesses over a foot-stomping beat and tapping guitar strums, before the chorus charges head-first into a blissful folk-pop hook of anthemic proportions. ‘Charlie Brown’ may be Coldplay’s most youthful sounding cut to date, but it’s their well-worn ear for a stellar riff that’s the main attraction here. [8]

Music videos


On 7th December 2011, Coldplay posted a live version of the Charlie Brown video, as a prelude to the official video that would later be released in January 2011. The footage came from the headline festival appearances around the world, earlier in 2011. The live prequel also came with the message: “Happy memories of playing this song at festivals over the summer. Directed by the brilliant Mat Whitecross and Mark Rowbotham. ‘Proper’ Charlie Brown vid coming later… Love Will” [9]

The second, official video for Charlie Brown was released online at 8am (GMT) on 3rd February 2012 via VEVO, Youtube, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and the official Coldplay website. A preview of the music video in the form of a gif image was released via Coldplay’s Twitter on 2nd February 2012.[10]

It was revealed on 13th December 2011 via the Coldplaying messageboard [11] that the video features 50 painted dancers and was shot in a church in Brentford, North London over a period of three days between 12th and 14th December 2011. The director of the video is long-time Coldplay friend, Mat Whitecross, who also directed the Paradise music video just two months earlier in South Africa in October 2011.

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Coldplay

Coldplay

Coldplay is an English rock band from London. Formed in 1997, Coldplay achieved worldwide fame with their 2000 single “Yellow”, followed by the success of their debut album, Parachutes. The group comprises vocalist Chris Martin, guitarist Jonny Buckland, bassist Guy Berryman and drummer Will Champion.

Coldplay’s early material was often compared to acts such as Jeff Buckley and Radiohead, while also drawing comparisons to U2. Since the release of Parachutes, Coldplay have also drawn influence from other sources, including Echo and the Bunnymen and George Harrison on A Rush of Blood to the Head (2002) and Johnny Cash and Kraftwerk for X&Y (2005), the band’s third release.Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends is the fourth studio album by English alternative rock band Coldplay, released 17 June 2008 on Parlophone Records. Recording sessions for the album took place during June 2007 to April 2008 and featured production by Jon Hopkins, Rik Simpson, Markus Dravs, and Brian Eno.

Coldplay have been active supporters of various social and political causes, such as Oxfam’s Make Trade Fair campaign and Amnesty International. The group has also performed at various charity projects such as Band Aid 20, Live 8, and the Teenage Cancer Trust.


Contents

History


Formation and early years (1996–1999)


The members of the band met at Ramsay Hall, a residence hall at University College London in September 1996. Chris Martin and Jonny Buckland were the first members of the band, having met one another during their orientation week. They spent the rest of the year planning a band, with their efforts culminating in an *NSYNC-inspired boy band called Pectoralz. Eventually Guy Berryman, a classmate of the two, joined the ranks without consideration of what musical direction the band was taking.

By 1997, Coldplay were performing small club gigs for local Camden promoters. By that time, the band had renounced their earlier boy-band flavoured aspirations, and changed their name to Starfish. Martin also had recruited his erstwhile school friend Phil Harvey, who was studying classics at Oxford, to act as band manager. Harvey managed the band until the release of their second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head.

Flyer for an early 1998 gig

Finally, in early 1998, the band’s line-up was complete when Will Champion joined the band to take up percussion duties. The multi-talented Champion had grown up playing piano, guitar, bass, and tin whistle; he quickly learned the drums, despite having no previous experience with that instrument. At the time, the band still performed under the name Starfish. Eventually , a mutual friend of the band – Tim from the band ‘The HIgh Wire’ (not Tim Rice-Oxley, as previously reported), gave the band permission to use the name “Coldplay”, which he had rejected for his band as he thought it was “too depressing”. The name also comes from a collection of poems by Philip Horky.

On May 18, 1998, the band released 500 copies of the Safety EP. Most of the discs were given to record companies and friends; only 50 copies remained for sale to the public. In December, Coldplay signed to indie label Fierce Panda. The result was the three track EP Brothers & Sisters which was quickly recorded over four days in February 1999. The disc was released in April and was limited to only 2,500 copies. Interest in the band was slowly growing across the UK, helped by regular airplay from BBC Radio 1 DJ Steve Lamacq and BMG Music Publishing, which had signed the band to a development deal.

After completing their final examinations, Coldplay signed to Parlophone for a five-album contract in the spring of 1999. After making their first appearance at Glastonbury, the band went into studio to record a third EP titled The Blue Room. The disc was released in October, and 5,000 copies were made available to the public. Its success in establishing Coldplay was aided immensely by the single “Bigger Stronger”, which got airplay on Radio 1.

The recording sessions for The Blue Room were tumultuous. Martin kicked Champion out of the band but later pleaded with him to return and due to his guilt, Martin (a self-proclaimed non-drinker and non-smoker) went on a drinking binge. Eventually, the band worked out their differences and put in place a new set of rules to keep the group intact. First, the band declared an all-for-one approach: Coldplay was a democracy, and profits were to be shared equally, taking a page from bands like A-ha, U2 and R.E.M. Second, the band would fire anyone who used hard drugs.


Parachutes (1999–2001)


In November 1999, Coldplay focused efforts on their debut album. The band spent the New Year by completing album tracks “Yellow” and “Everything’s Not Lost”. They also played on the NME Carling Premier Tour, which showcased up-and-coming acts. After releasing three EPs without a hit song, Coldplay scored their first Top 40 single, “Shiver”. Released in March 2000, the single placed at a modest #35 and earned the band their first airplay on MTV. June 2000 was a pivotal moment in Coldplay’s history. The band embarked on their first headlining tour, which included a triumphant return to Glastonbury. More notably, the band released the breakthrough single, “Yellow”. The song shot to #4 on the UK Singles Chart and placed the band in public consciousness.

Guitarist Jon Buckland

Coldplay released their first full-length album, Parachutes, in July 2000, which debuted at #1 on the UK Albums Chart. Along with critical acclaim, Parachutes was sometimes criticised for bearing a strong resemblance to the music of alt-rock band Radiohead in their The BendsOK Computer era. “Yellow” and “Trouble” earned regular radio airplay on both sides of the Atlantic. Parlophone originally predicted sales of 40,000 units of Parachutes; by Christmas, 1.6 million copies had been sold in the United Kingdom alone. Parachutes was nominated for the Mercury Music Prize in September 2000.

Having found success in Europe, the band set their sights on North America. Parachutes was released in November 2000. The band embarked on a US club tour in early 2001, beginning with a show in Vancouver, Canada, which was coupled with appearances on Saturday Night Live, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and The Late Show with David Letterman. Parachutes was a slow burning success, and was certified with double-platinum status in the United States. The album was also critically well-received, earning Best Alternative Music Album honours at the 2002 Grammy Awards.


A Rush of Blood to the Head (2001–2004)


Coldplay returned working in October 2001 to begin work on their second album. With much anticipation, Coldplay released A Rush of Blood to the Head in August 2002.

The opening track, “Politik”, was written days after the September 11 terrorist attacks. The album spawned many popular singles, notably “In My Place”, “The Scientist”, and “Clocks”.

Coldplay toured for over a year, from June 2002 to September 2003, visiting five continents including co-headlining festival dates at Glastonbury Festival, V Festival, and Rock Werchter. The tour showed the band’s progression into a bona fide stadium act. Many shows included elaborate lighting and individualised screens reminiscent of U2’s Elevation tour. During the extended tour, Coldplay also recorded a live DVD and CD, Live 2003, at Sydney’s Hordern Pavilion. The compilation featured a new song, “Moses”.

In December 2003, they were named by readers of Rolling Stone magazine as the best artist and the best band of the year. At that time Coldplay covered The Pretenders’ hit “2000 Miles”, which was made available for download on their official site. It was the top selling UK download that year, with proceeds from the sales donated to Future Forests and Stop Handgun Violence campaigns. A Rush of Blood to the Head won two trophies at the 2003 Grammy Awards. At the 2004 Grammy Awards, Coldplay earned Record of the Year honours for Clocks. The album was also named to Rolling Stone’s 2003 list of the 500 Greatest Albums at number 473.


X&Y (2004–2006)


2004 was a quiet year for Coldplay, as they spent most of the year out of spotlight resting from touring and recording their third album. In May, Coldplay teased fans with a new song and music video on their official site to celebrate the birth of Apple, Martin’s daughter with his wife, actress Gwyneth Paltrow. Famed producer Sir George Martin introduced the promo as Coldplay and their producer, Ken Nelson, performed as The Nappies, a satirised rap/glam rock outfit. Martin joked that this music had been inspired by Jay-Z.

Coldplay’s third album, X&Y, was released on 6 June 2005 in the UK. This new, delayed release date had put the album back into the next fiscal year, actually causing EMI’s stock to drop. It became the best-selling album of 2005 with worldwide sales of 8.3 million. The lead single, “Speed of Sound”, made its radio and online music store debut on 18 April and was released as a CD on 23 May, 2005. The album debuted at #1 in 28 countries worldwide and was the second fastest selling album in UK chart history. Two other singles were released that year: “Fix You” in September and “Talk” in December. In May 2006 the band released “The Hardest Part” in several countries outside the UK. Despite the commercial success, the critical reaction to X&Y was less unanimous in its praise than the reviews for its predecessor.

From June 2005 to July 2006, Coldplay went on their Twisted Logic tour, which has included festival dates like Coachella, Glastonbury and the Austin City Limits Music Festival. For the 2006 tour, the band completed a third visit in the same tour to North America with dates from late January (Seattle) to early April (Philadelphia).

In July 2005, the band appeared at Live 8 in Hyde Park, where they played a rendition of The Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony” with Richard Ashcroft on vocals. In September, Coldplay recorded a new version of “How You See the World” with reworked lyrics to War Child’s Help: A Day in the Life charity album. In February 2006, Coldplay earned Best Album and Best Single honours at the Brit Awards. In his acceptance speech, lead singer Chris Martin raised rumours of a band split when he announced in manner “This (award) means so much to us, especially now. It’s going to be a few years before you see us again.” The band’s label have refuted these claims as they have two more albums in contract.


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


The band began to work on their fourth studio album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, in October 2006, with Brian Eno as producer. Coldplay took a break from recording and toured Latin America in early 2007, including shows in Chile, Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico. The band revealed that the album seemed to be shaping up with Hispanic influences, after having recorded in churches and other areas in Latin America and Spain during their tour. The group spent the rest of the year recording, mainly with Brian Eno.

Chris Martin described Viva la Vida as a new direction for Coldplay: a change from their past three albums, which they have referred to as a “trilogy”. He said the album featured less falsetto as he allowed his voice’s lower register to take precedence. Some songs, such as “Violet Hill”, contain distorted guitar riffs and bluesy undertones. “Violet Hill” was confirmed as the first single, with a radio release date of 29 April 2008. After the first play, it was freely obtainable from Coldplay’s website from 12:15 pm (GMT +0) for one week (achieving two million downloads), until it became commercially available to download on 6 May. “[[Violet Hill[[” entered the UK Top 10, US Top 40 (entering the Top 10 in the Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart) and charted well in the rest of the world.

The title track, “Viva la Vida”, was also released exclusively on iTunes. It became the band’s first number one on the Billboard Hot 100, and their first UK number one, based on download sales alone. On 15 June 2008, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends topped the UK album chart, despite having been on sale for only three days. In that time, it sold 302,000 copies; the BBC called it “one of the fastest-selling records in UK history”. By the end of June, it had set a new record for most-downloaded album ever. In October 2008, Coldplay won two Q Awards for Best Album for Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends and Best Act in the World Today. The band followed up the album with the Prospekt’s March EP which was released on 21 November 2008. The EP features tracks from the Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends sessions and, as well as being available on its own, was available as a bonus disc with later editions of Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends. The song “Life in Technicolor II” was released as a single on 9 February 2009.

On 16 June 2008, Coldplay began their Viva La Vida Tour with a free concert at Brixton Academy in London. This was followed two days later by a 45-minute performance that was broadcast live from outside BBC Television Centre. “Lost!” became the third single from the album, featuring a new version with Jay-Z. During an interview with Zane Lowe for BBC Radio 1 on 16 October, Martin suggested that the band were trying to book Knebworth House in Hertfordshire for a concert in 2009. Coldplay performed the opening set on 14 March 2009 for Sound Relief at the Sydney Cricket Ground and then played a sold-out concert later that same night. Sound Relief is a benefit concert for victims of the Victorian Bushfire Crisis and the Queensland Floods. Appearing with Coldplay at the Sydney concert were Eskimo Joe, Hoodoo Gurus, Icehouse, Josh Pyke, Little Birdy, The Presets, Wolfmother, You Am I, Kings of Leon and additional artists.

On 20 January 2009, it was announced that Coldplay had been nominated for four BRIT Awards: British Group, British Live Act, British Single (“Viva la Vida”) and British Album (Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends). At the 51st Grammy Awards on 8 February 2009, Coldplay won three Grammys in the categories for Song of Year for “Viva la Vida”, Best Rock Album for Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, and Best Vocal Pop Performance by a Duo or Group for “Viva la Vida”.

On 1 May 2009, the band announced on their official website that they would be giving away a live CD, entitled LeftRightLeftRightLeft, at the remaining concerts of their Viva La Vida Tour. The album is also available as a free download from their website beginning 15 May 2009. The nine tracks were recorded at various shows during the tour.


Political and social activism


Despite Coldplay’s large worldwide popularity, the band have remained protective of how their music is used in the media, refusing its use for product endorsements. In the past, Coldplay turned down multi-million dollar contracts from Gatorade, Diet Coke, and Gap, who wanted to use the songs “Yellow”, “Trouble”, and “Don’t Panic” respectively. According to Martin, “We wouldn’t be able to live with ourselves if we sold the songs’ meanings like that.”

Coldplay are a supporter of Amnesty International. Chris Martin is also noted as one of the most visible celebrity advocates for “fair trade”, supporting Oxfam’s Make Trade Fair campaign until its dissolution in 2005 after the G8 summit in Gleneagles. Martin has been on trips with Oxfam to assess conditions, has appeared in its advertising campaign, and is known for wearing a “Make Trade Fair” wristband during public appearances, including at Coldplay concerts.

Martin was outspoken against the 2003 invasion of Iraq, and he endorsed Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry in 2004. Although he is not a U.S. citizen, Martin’s wife, Gwyneth Paltrow, is; both currently live in London and Los Angeles.

In the band’s early years, Coldplay were also widely noted in the media for their claim to give 10% of the band’s profits to charity. Bassist Guy Berryman said, “You can make people aware of issues. It isn’t very much effort for us at all, but if it can help people, then we want to do it”. The band also asks that any gifts intended for them are donated to charity, according to a response on the FAQ section of Coldplay’s website.

Coldplay parodied their own highly publicised stance on political and social issues with a cameo in the 2004 film Shaun of the Dead, appearing on TV within the film to support the charity “Zombaid” (a pun on Live Aid), a charity dedicated to giving zombies better political rights. Martin also played himself on an episode of Extras in which he shamelessly took advantage of a public service announcement shoot to promote a fictitious Greatest Hits album.


Discography

  • No chart position held. (UK); No chart position held. (US)2500 original copies in circulation

  • No chart position held. (UK); No chart position held. (US)5000 copies in circulation

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Art history: Brothers & Sisters

Coldplay timeline interview with a friend of the band John Hilton about his cover art for their second release

Twitter

Like the cover of their first single, the artwork for Brothers & Sisters was designed by a friend of the band, John Hilton. We spoke to him about the design.

Hi John. So, after you’d done the artwork for the Safety EP, Coldplay then got a single deal with Fierce Panda and you were asked you to do the next artwork too.
That’s right.


What was the thought process behind that one?
That was more like a proper project at college. I treated them like the client. At the time, they were quite into Radiohead, so it was quite Radiohead-y. I did lots of ideas in sketchbooks and on Photoshop. And this was when Photoshop was still quite new.


What’s on the cover?
Well there’s just a little image of some drowning, bobbing people, in that sketchy way. They quite liked that, but it was a bit boring on its own. I had this picture from my back garden in my horrible little student home in Birmingham. I remember there was this white pitbull dog in the garden next door which just used to bark constantly and drive me nuts. So it was a kind of angst-y, teenage-y picture, and it was supposed to be about being somewhere not so great. It was middle class angst, I suppose.


That picture was taken out of your bedroom window?
Exactly, from my college digs. So it’s a solarised, negative version of that. You can see a fence, a couple of bin bags and that dog that was always barking. And over the top it’s the drawing of Coldplay.


By this stage the band were beginning to go places. Were you under more pressure for this one?
No, I remember it being brilliant. I was really good friends with Jonny – I still am – so I’d go down there to see them all the time at university. And I’d be going with them to Fierce Panda. It felt like I was part of a team. They were very good at making everyone feel welcome. I was properly involved when they were recording things, as was all of our bunch of friends. We’d all be around. I was in the Fierce Panda studios working on the artwork and deciding where all the text and the logo would go. It just felt like I was helping them out, and vice versa.


Do you own a copy of this one?
Yeah, I have got that one. It’s a bit battered though. It’s had a lot of use.


How do you look back on that cover?
At the time I thought it was good, but you look back and it just looks like a pile of college rubbish now!


It has a certain charm. It’s not too slick.
No, it certainly wasn’t! This is the point where they still looked like geeky students. There was nothing polished about it.


So once they signed for Parlophone did your role as art man end?
Yeah, that’s when it started to become a proper competition. Which was fine. I actually think I had better covers for the Brothers & Sisters one at the time – although in hindsight, they’d have looked rubbish as well – but that was the one that they chose.


Can you remember what the other options were?
Oh there’s a whole load of them somewhere. I went off on loads of tangents. But I don’t think they ever expected it to go massively stellar at that point. I think they just thought, screw it, it’s of its time, it doesn’t matter. And it doesn’t really matter. It sells on the basis that it’s this great early single from a now big band, and it’s almost better that it’s got a crap cover.


Crap is harsh. Have you designed other record covers since?
Only for bands I’ve been in. I’ve put down Photoshop now, really.


Do you still tell people that you’ve designed covers for Coldplay?
I used to, but I don’t any more. I’ll mention it occasionally if it comes up.


It’s a pretty cool string to have on your bow.
Yeah, it’s great. Although I’m more proud of the hundreds of photographs I’ve got of them rehearsing in their flat.


Have you got any plans to do anything with those?
They’re all in a big Camden recycling box at the moment, in my wardrobe. Maybe one day I’ll dig them all out. But it never felt right to try and exploit that sort of thing.


And you’re still in touch with them?
Yeah. Jonny was my best man at my wedding, along with my friend Gav. We hang out all the time.


They’ve done quite well for themselves.
Brilliantly, I’m very, very proud.


Are you in a band still?
I am. I’ve been in a few bands over the years – Bettina Motive and Grand Transmitter. The one I’m in now is called The Complete Short Stories. It’s a seven-piece with a girl singer. We’ve just done an album on Pointy records, which is a subsidiary of Fierce Panda. It’s all going quite well at the moment.

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Viva La Vida Tour

Poster for Summer Sonic 2008 – Coldplay headlining

The Viva la Vida Tour (Also Known As The Viva La Vida World Tour) is Coldplay’s third major concert tour and spans from 2008 to 2010. This tour supports their fourth studio album Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends. The tour has been a massive commercial and critical success, taking in some of the largest venues in the world, often with double or triple nights in select markets.

The tour was believed to have ended on September 19, 2009, following two back-to-back homecoming concerts at Wembley Stadium in London, but on October 1, 2009, one final leg of the Viva La Vida Tour was announced, consisting of seven shows in Latin America in February and March, 2010.


Contents

  • 21 The Oracle on the Viva La Vida Tour

About the tour


The stage setup consisted of a stripped down main stage and two catwalks; Coldplay also performed amongst audience members at the back of venues in a special acoustic set. Instead of a giant video screen on-stage, the band opted for six hanging giant lightbulbs that displayed images and closeups. Lead singer Chris Martin dubbed the fixtures as “magic balls”, while drummer Will Champion added that they release confetti butterflies.

Coldplay were accompanied by Oxfam and David Gibbin during the tour. Volunteers were stationed at each venue to tell concertgoers how to reduce poverty; the organization’s logo and website was featured on one of the light ball fixtures during each concert.

On July 23, 2008 Coldplay performed their second in two shows at the United Center arena in Chicago. In each of the two shows, the band shot the music video for “Lost!” by performing the song twice (as they did with the “Fix You” video). On September 19, 2008, Chris Martin was accompanied by A-Ha pianist Magne Furuholmen in the encore at the Oslo Spektrum, Oslo, to play a cover of the A-Ha song “Hunting High and Low”.

Their Tampa show, scheduled for August 9, 2009 was delayed because of medical reasons. Later, it was cancelled.

Background to the Viva La Vida tour


Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida” world tour — which will land in North America, Europe and Japan — is set to begin at Philadelphia’s Wachovia Center on June 29 2008 and extend well into next year, Billboard.com can reveal.

Save for the Pemberton Festival in Vancouver on July 27 2008, Coldplay will play arenas in North America, the U.K. and Europe on the tour’s first leg. Some North American dates will go on sale May 16-17 2008, but the majority go up June 14 2008, the weekend before “Viva La Vida” is released. Ticket info will be available at www.coldplay.com.

As previously reported, Coldplay will play free concerts in London (June 16 at the Brixton Academy) and New York (June 23 at Madison Square Garden). Information on how to win tickets to these shows will be available at the band’s website beginning today (May 9). The contest runs through June 1 2008 and winners will receive notification on June 5. Roughly 50 shows are planned for North America, followed by Europe and the U.K. Coldplay will also headline the Summer Sonic festival Aug. 9-10 2008 in Tokyo and Osaka, Japan. About 90 dates total are expected for this year. More shows are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. “Last time we ended up doing 150 shows; we’ll probably end up roughly the same,” Coldplay manager Dave Holmes tells Billboard.com.

Live Nation will promote shows in Europe and North America, with U.K. dates promoted by SJM. Lighting and set design for the tour are by Paul Normandale and features “lots of projection,” Dave Holmes says. “It will really blow people away.”

Ticket prices are still being determined, but a three-tiered pricing strategy is likely, with prices roughly in the $50, $65 and $85 range. “You’re not going to see us coming out with $125-$150 tickets,” Holmes says.


January

  • Viva La Vida Tour 2008: Oxfam America Blog

UK Dates Unearthed


The Liverpool Echo has let slip Coldplay’s itinery for their UK leg of the Viva La Vida tour, despite this part of the schedule not yet being unveiled by the official site.

They have announced that Coldplay will perform at the new Liverpool Echo Arena in the run-up to Christmas (December 10). The waterfront venue sales manager Ian Congdon said it was thrilling to sign such a massive act. He said: “The fact we are able to secure this level of act within four months of opening the Echo Arena as a new venue is, without doubt, a phenomenal success.”

Besides the Liverpool gig, Coldplay have announced plans to play Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow and London as part of their 12-date tour. The date for tickets to go on sale has not yet been released.

Update: 3rd October 2008 14:25 GMT
Anchorman has confirmed changes to the Uk tour schedule. Discussion can be found here: http://www.coldplaying.com/forum/showthread.php?t=50352

Here are the confirmed UK dates for Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida” Tour:

  • 22 December 2008: 02 Arena, Dublin, Ireland

Summer Festival 2008, Quebec


Coldplay will be performing on the opening day at the outdoor Summer Festival in Quebec on 3rd July 2008, according to French media. Coldplay are rumoured to be playing at the Plains of Abraham which is the biggest of the open field venues. Other bands playing include Linkin Park and Yes.

For those who speak French:

La formation britannique Coldplay donnerait un spectacle en ouverture du Festival d’été de Québec, le 3 juillet prochain, selon une information rapportée par le réseau TVA lundi soir. Le spectacle aura lieu sur les Plaines d’Abraham. Les détails du contrat seraient finalisés d’ici peu, toujours selon TVA. Le Festival d’été doit confirmer la nouvelle dans quelques jours. Coldplay fera la promotion de son quatrième album studio, un opus intitulé «Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends», dont la sortie est attendue le 17 juin prochain en Amérique du Nord. Ce titre est un hommage à la peintre mexicaine Frida Kahlo. Produit par Brian Eno, cet album succèdera à «X&Y» paru en 2005.

13th Annual Summer Concert Series (2008)


The Today show has announced the lineup for the 13th annual Summer Concert Series, let’s just say there’s a promise of a new day (okay, we’ll stop).

Headliners include Miley Cyrus, Mary J Blige, Chris Brown, Alanis Morissette, Ashlee Simpson (sans lip sync hoe down, we’re sure), Kenny Chesney and Coldplay. The summer series kicks off a couple months early with a “special comeback performance” by American Idol’s Paula Abdul on Friday, April 25.

Coldplay will play on the 27th June.

More on the 13th Annual Summer Concert Series at http://www.coldplaying.com/forum/showthread.php?t=43565

Pemberton Festival 2008, Canada


On 13th March 2008 it was revealed that Coldplay, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Jay-Z and Nine Inch Nails will headline the first-ever Pemberton Festival, set for July 25-27 in Pemberton, B.C.

The festival is produced by Live Nation and Good Boy Productions. Live Nation Canada CEO Shane Bourbonnais will spearhead LN’s efforts on the event. Good Boy Productions is a joint venture between Coldplay manager Dave Holmes and Depeche Mode manager Jonathan Kessler.

Coldplay will play on the 27th July.

More on the Pemberton festival at http://www.coldplaying.com/forum/showthread.php?t=43340

Summer Sonic 2008, Japan


Coldplay will be performing at Summer Sonic, their official MySpace has confirmed. The dates are as follows:


  • August 9th, Osaka, Maishima

  • August 10th, Tokyo, Marine Stadium

On sale information coming soon. More on the Summer Sonic festival at http://www.coldplaying.com/forum/showthread.php?t=43152

Unfounded Tour Dates


New images of Coldplay’s new website have surfaced via their official web designers, SlenderFungus.com. In them, are confirmation that the album title has already been announced, as well a forthcoming signed Lithograph competition.

The screenshots also give a clue to three new concert dates for the UK as 25th June at London’s Wembley Arena, 26th June in Birmingham and 29th June at the Apollo in Manchester.

However these dates appear unsubstantiated as they clash with other artists performing at the venues.


Opening acts

  • Bat For Lashes (Latin America 2010)

The Oracle on the Viva La Vida Tour


August 22, 2012 – submitted by Kristin, United States of America

Q. Hey Oracle. 🙂

Are the sparklers that the boys used on their Viva La Vida tour normal sparklers? Uh, well how did they swing them around so easily I mean?

One of the most perfect moments ever. 🙂

Thanks so much.

The Oracle replies:

They’re pretty standard and to be honest, every sparkler I have on Bonfire Night / New Year’s Eve are swung around with the same great force and withstand it so maybe you’ve got to find a better sparkler provider…

November 12, 2010 – submitted by Thibault, France

Q. Hi wise Oracle!

Refering to the question of the VLV tour program, is this one a real one?

Thanks for your advices!

The Oracle replies:

Yes it is but it’s worth noting there was a second run and the cover of that was slightly different as it also featured the puppets.

November 9, 2010 – submitted by Jeewee, Netherlands

Q. Dear Oracle,

I was over at a friend’s today and we both share the fact that we like Coldplay very much. When I was sitting down in his room, he had a book of Coldplay. I reached out to it and saw some really awesome pictures. It contained all the artwork on Viva and a lot of studio pictures and even pictures taken during the recording of the videos for Violet Hill. In the middle was a blueprint of the stage I believe! My friend didn’t know where he got it from, do you have any idea where I can buy this awesome book? Thanks Oracle!

The Oracle replies:

I knew what you meant right away; the tour programme from Viva la Vida. I found some images of it to save me scanning mine (thanks Coldplaying!)

The tour programmes were obviously sold on tour but you can still find some for sale on auction sites and such…

August 20, 2010 – submitted by Luis, Mexico

Q. Olaa gran y poderoso Oraculo!

Well maybe this is a stupid question but I can’t remember when and where was the first show of the Viva la Vida tour so can you tell me?
Thanks and sorry for my bad English.

Atentamente Luis

The Oracle replies:

It’s not a stupid question at all; it was a long time ago! Even though I know when and where it was, I still feel the need to account for the live shows preceding the tour.

On June 13 2008 the band performed for friends & family at Wembley. This was followed by free/TV shows on 16th in Brixton, 17th Barcelona, 18th BBC Television Centre, 19th Paris and 23rd & 27th New York.

The first live date of the tour proper was July 14th at The Forum, Los Angeles.

June 28, 2010 – submitted by Jonathan, United States of America

Q. While Yellow was played during the Viva La Vida tour, giant yellow balls were released into the crowd. When the song was over, the yellow balls seemed to disappear. I would have thought that the crowd would have kept the balls bouncing. How is it that the yellow balls disappeared almost on cue?

The Oracle replies:

For those who didn’t know, the yellow balls were actually balloons. They were initially bounced around the arenas/stadiums during the song. Although some were saved (or bravely attempted to be by some) most were popped to release their confetti. A couple made it back to the stage where Chris would pop them with his guitar on the final note.

April 22, 2010 – submitted by Christine, United States of America

Q. I am DYING to know, dearest Oracle, who the Table Tennis Champ of the Latin American Tour is?? Natasha or Chris (or was there a random underdog who blew them both out of the water)?? While I love Chris to pieces I’m a bit competitive myself so I’m pulling for the girl power and hope Natasha ran the tables 🙂

MUCHOS GRACIAS to the boys and crew for a killer finale in Monterrey – glad to know we were the loudest!

The Oracle replies:

The table tennis table saw many competitors come and go including Chris, Will, Phil, Chris’s Dad & sister (the Martins are VERY competitive); Kelly (security), Dan (trainer), Dan (sound), Natasha, Charlotte (Bat for Lashes) and even I had a go.

Chris likes to play to relax him before a show but don’t be fooled into thinking he’s not playing to win and win he did – over and over. Natasha was pretty good (as was Charlotte) but she didn’t beat Chris. Don’t get me wrong he got whipped a few times but overall Chris played the most and therefore is the tour ping-pong champion.

March 1, 2010 – submitted by Lia, Canada

Q. Hi!

As you most likely know, there was a massive earthquake off of Chile on Friday. I was just wondering if this has affected the band or the tour.
Thanks!

The Oracle replies:

We were all sad and shocked to awake to news of the earthquake whilst in Buenos Aires. Geographically we were far enough away that it didn’t directly affect us but it did mean that there was no soundcheck at last night’s Rio show as much of the equipment was being flown in from Chile and due to the airport being closed it couldn’t get to us on time. That said we’re of course all far more concerned for the people of Chile.

March 1, 2010 – submitted by Andres, Colombia

Q. Hello!!!!

Hope you are having a great time in Latin America. I just saw the setlist of Buenos Aires and I’m wondering, is it going to be the same in Bogota? We’d love you to play Trouble and Amsterdam, we love that songs… ahh and shiver???

Could you make a longer setlist?? Hahahaha….

Bye everyone, we love you all and we wait for you.

The Oracle replies:

We are all having a great time here! It’s shame it’s raining in Rio but that didn’t dampen spirits at last night’s show. It was only the second gig of this tour but it was possibly the best Coldplay concert I have ever seen; an opinion shared by many of our entourage in fact!
The crowd were absolutely incredible and it will be interesting to see if they can be matched for the remaining dates.

Anyway, to your question… to my shock and amazement (even though I’d heard the guys rehearsing it earlier in the day) Shiver was in the set at Rio. It was amazing so there’s more than a chance you’ll be hearing that Andres but I wouldn’t expect Trouble or Amsterdam. Someone asked Chris by the pool if they’d play Amsterdam in Buenos Aires – a popular request it seems.

February 15, 2010 – submitted by Karina, Uruguay

Q. Dear Oracle,

Will there be a live photoblog on Latin American tour?

thank you!

The Oracle replies:

There won’t be a live photoblog but there will be photos and news from the tour. Keep an eye on our Anchorman over the next few days as he will be telling you something else that you may find interesting…

January 15, 2010 – submitted by Ximena, Peru

Q. If Coldplay have auctioned their clothes of Viva la Vida Tour. What clothes, they’ll use in Latin America Tour?

The Oracle replies:

There was an agreement that the clothes (and instruments) would be sent out to the winning bidders after the Latin American tour dates so this won’t cause a problem.

September 28, 2009 – submitted by Emily, United States of America
V
Q. Oracle,

On one of the Roadie #42 blogs they mentioned a joke about how a Simon Cowell picture would appear during the song Yellow. He said that he didn’t want to spoil the joke because he didn’t want to ruin it for the next concerts. Well now that the Viva tour is over, What was the joke? from, Emily=)

The Oracle replies:

Ah yes, well what happened was after everyone was singing along to Yellow, Chris asked a pre-recorded Simon Cowell (from one of the X Factor shows)what he thought of the audience and he didn’t give a favourable response. Chris then said they should try again to impress the judge and began to play the end of Yellow again. As it finished he said “What did you think about that Simon?” to which he replied: “That was bloody fantastic”.

I guess you had to be there!

September 18, 2009 – submitted by Simone, Germany

Q. Hi clever Oracle!

My question refers to the crew. are all of them British or are they composed of different nations?

Love, S.

The Oracle replies:

The crew is international. Obviously there are many British crew members but a tour of this size requires so many people, they’re from all over.

September 7, 2009 – submitted by Lucas, Spain

Q. So…Oracle…What happens to the rest of the Coldplay crew after the tour is over? (You know, everyone else besides be actual 4 members)?

The Oracle replies:

The majority start by taking a well-earned break but depending on the length of the break in between, some work on other projects/ with other bands.

August 24, 2009 – submitted by Sophia, Spain

Q. Hullo there!

I’ve never been to a Coldplay concert, so I was wondering what happens to those yellow balls they let loose on the crowd? Do people keep them or do the band/crew take them back?

The Oracle replies:

I have seen various things happen to the yellow balloons; the majority are popped (they have confetti inside). Some people fight over ownership (ugly!) and some do make it outside. I’d love to see someone try and get one in the boot of their car! Some make their way to Chris and he pops them with his guitar.

The point is to bounce them around from person to person and then pop them! They’re certainly not meant to end up back with the crew.

August 20, 2009 – submitted by Marissa, Australia

Q. Are the boys and the crew looking forward to or dreading the end of the Viva La Vida tour in less than a month?

The Oracle replies:

I wouldn’t use the word dread to describe how they’re feeling; the guys love playing live but it’s always rather nice for everyone to return to their normal everyday life after being on the road for such an incredible length of time. That said, it was once described to me as… “From following a schedule of being told where to be, where to go and when to do it and suddenly arriving home free to do anything you like is strange and takes some adjusting to”.

They are all definitely ready for a well deserved break.

June 22, 2009 – submitted by Andrew, United States of America

Q. Oh ever-knowing Oracle,

Is it true Coldplay are releasing a Viva La Vida Tour DVD? I heard Chris was talking about it then I heard that Coldplay’s Video Manager said that the filming in Vancouver was “for the archive.”

Oh please answer, Oracle.

-Andrew

The Oracle replies:

It’s usual to document the live shows for archive but there are no further plans for the footage as yet.

June 18, 2009 – submitted by Matt, United States of America

Q. At the Quest Center show, there seemed to be a very long delay between supporting act Snow Patrol and Coldplay. It lasted at least 45 minutes and included a stagehand breakdancing to Jay-Z and the blaring of a quirky orchestral piece. Does this happen before every show, or was there just some technical difficulties? If this is a common occurrence, what is the title of the orchestra piece?

The Oracle replies:

That’s around the standard time between the support and main act. There are a few changes that need to be made between the two. Backdrops, lights and instruments need to be in place and checked before the main show. Also the opening act’s gear needs to be removed. It gives time for everything to be ready plus the crowd can use the facilities!

June 4, 2009 – submitted by Andrew, United States of America

Q. Oh wise Oracle,

I just went to the Darien Center concert yesterday and it was by far the best concert I have ever been to in my life. I was wondering though, how come Chris played The Hardest Part acoustically? Hope you answer!

P.S. – When the band came and played in the back area of the crowd it was amazing I could have reached out and touched them!

The Oracle replies:

This started back on Saturday 30 August 2008 when Coldplay performed an intimate live concert for BBC Radio 2. Chris announced that they were playing it that way as the band were divided on their opinion of the song. Two members like it; two don’t so he and Will performed it acoustically. It then became a part of the live show and proves to be a popular version.

June 1, 2009 – submitted by Syrus, United States of America

Q. Dear Oracle,

The Roadie often menitons a C stage and B stage.

What are they?

Thanks!! =]

The Oracle replies:

The current live show consists of the main stage, Stage A if you will and there are two runways that protrude at either side. From the runway at stage left, another stage appears during the show, known as Stage B. Stage C is actually a small area set aside for an acoustic performance and is within the audience, which brings the people at the back closer to the action.

June 1, 2009 – submitted by Beth, United States of America

Q. Dearest Oracle,

I feel stupid asking this question, but for the life of me I cannot remember the name of the classical song that was played right before Coldplay came on stage. The people sitting in front of me had seen Coldplay before, and they said that the song was played every time. I am desperately searching my brain for this song, but it’s not working!

It came right before Life in Technicolor.

Please help!

The show starts right after Johann Strauss’ The Blue Danube.

March 31, 2009 – submitted by Leonidas, Greece

Q. Dear Oracle,

I hope the question isn’t that big and answer me.

I wanna know why Coldplay never came here in Greece as in the Europe Tour..?

And the second question…I split up,with my girlfriend yesterday..after 1 year and 1 month relationship…but i still need her, I still love her..the problem is that we fighting for a lot..and maybe we lost the magic..:( what should I do..?

Give to the boys a big hug..from me..and Greece of course.

Sorry for the big..question

Kisses 😀

The Oracle replies:

It’s just one of those places that is rarely on any band’s tour schedule but that doesn’t mean never. Never say never…

As for your other question, all I can say is right now you are hurting but try to think through your feelings because I would hope that you don’t “need” her, you want her and that’s different. It only happened yesterday so you’re bound to feel incredibly sad. If you were fighting a lot, time apart sounds like it might be a good idea. Breaking up with someone you still love is so painful but remember this and hopefully in time you will believe it; if someone doesn’t want to be with you for whatever their reason, you really are better off without them. Have faith in yourself, you will find love again with someone deserving of your love. Just give yourself plenty of time to heal from the hurt.

March 23, 2009 – submitted by Rudolf, Slovakia

Q. Hi dear Oracle,

I always believed and I still do, that guys are playing everything live…but from current tour I have seen many performances and I really liked it! :o) BUT, in songs like Viva la vida or Lovers in Japan there are some parts (strings in VLV or the sound I cannot describe in LIJ) – and those parts sound always the same, as if they were pre-prepared and recorded (and of course I can’t see who should be playing those parts), do you know what I mean?

I can’t wait for your answer…

R

The Oracle replies:

I do know what you mean. The guys are playing their parts live and as you can probably work out, they aren’t able to play every single sound we hear on the album as there’s rather a lot going on. It’s usual to have pre-recorded parts in these circumstances. There have been occasions where live music was played off stage. For example, Matt McGinn used to play Chris’ guitar part in Yellow during one tour, as Chris decided he wanted to run around the stage more.

January 7, 2009 – submitted by Jason, United Kingdom

Q. I saw Coldplay in Birmingham on December 6th and during the concert Chris played a beautiful piece of classical music. It was piece I recognised but do not know the name of…….what was it? I would love to know cheers. Jason

The Oracle replies:

There were actually two classical/instrumental piano pieces played. One was after the stage b set and was an original composition Postcards From Far Away that is on Prospekt’s March. As you say you recognised it, chances are that it was the equally beautiful yet haunting piece Chris plays at the end of Politik. It’s the sublime Gnossienne No. 1 by Erik Satie.

December 19, 2008 – submitted by from Frederika and Nils, Germany

Q. Where do the Coldplay Crew get all the butterfly-confetti from?

Perhaps from a butterfly pooping pony out of Katy’s world, like in the movie Horton Hears a Who?

The Oracle replies:

A company based in Illinois called Strictly FX who also provide the 30+ blowers that shower us with the butterflies during the show! It’s the biggest confetti drop anywhere.

December 19, 2008 – submitted by Alistair, United Kingdom

Q. What was the classical piece of music played in the warm up before Coldplay came on stage at the O2 concert 16.12.08.

The Oracle replies:

The Blue Danube by Strauss comes straight after Jay-Z – I Just Wanna Love U (Give It 2 Me) that indicates it’s showtime.

September 29, 2008 – submitted by Stefanie, Austria

Q. Dear Oracle!

First of all I want to say thank you for answering all the questions! I really enjoy reading your answers to all those questions whether they’re Coldplay related or not. Now my question:

I went to the concert in Vienna last Wednesday(which was absolutely amazing!!) and at some point of the show the guys came to the back of the hall to a small space between the crowd and they were performing two songs there(I was standing right in front of them *smile*) Now I was wondering whether they are doing this on every concert or just sometimes?

The Oracle replies:

They call this segment of the show the acoustic section on Stage C and yes, it happens at every gig.

August 13, 2008 – submitted by Denis, Czech Republic

Q. Being the first time Coldplay will be touring Eastern Europe, can we expect some special setlist with older hits or some kind of surprise?

The Oracle replies:

I want it to be a surprise rather than tell you. To some extent it will be very similar to what they have been playing so far. The set list is always subject to change and they do prepare a number of songs to drop in from time to time. That said, they also decide to do impromptu versions along the way too. There’ll be many from the new album of course too as well as old favourites.

August 13, 2008 – submitted by Jessica, Canada

Q. Do the guys bring a private chef with them when they are on tour?

The Oracle replies:

The band have a catering company on the road with them (as do most touring bands). They’re called Eat to the Beat and are absolutely amazing. They create different menus every day and provide breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks and snacks for the entire crew as well as lay on any dressing room fodder and cater for after shows if needs be. Heidi is the wonderful lady who leads the team.

August 8, 2008 – submitted by sian, United States of America

Q. Does the band have a fitness professional/personal trainer on the tour?

The Oracle replies:

Continue Reading

Top 5 Coldplay Music Videos

The Top 5 Coldplay Music Videos according to coldplayers!

Twitter

Coldplayers have been submitting their top 5 lists on our forums, of the band’s top music videos, and we have the results, so far:


You can submit your top 5 music videos at any time, by posting on our forum topic, or via the Coldplaying app.

Jonny Buckland and Phil Harvey named this music video, featuring the band in puppet form as their favourite clip to have filmed. In Jonny’s case, he didn’t have to do much (he doesn’t like video shoots!) but Phil, Coldplay’s creative director starred in a cameo role, watching the puppets do their thing!

“We shot it in a village hall in a quaint little village in the countryside. It really reminded me of the jumble sales and village shows of my childhood. I loved the puppets and all the fun special effects plus I got to make a cameo in that chunky pullover”


5. Life In Technicolor ii

44 Speed Of Sound

‘Speed Of Sound’ was Coldplay’s grand return, for their third album ‘X&Y’ and the accompaying video featured the band performing in front of a vivid LED display, on a Los Angeles based sound stage. The LED background was designed to match Chris Martin’s vocals during the song and the result was an eye catching video, which was inescapable on music channels in 2005 and remains a firm fan favourite over 10 years on.
4. Speed Of Sound

33 Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall

Visually, ‘Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall’, the first single from ‘Mylo Xyloto’ perfectly summed up the colourful nature of the record. The video was shot at a derelict building in Millennium Mills, east London and was directed by Mat Whitecross once again, who used a ‘stop start’ technique in front of the colourful graffiti backdrop, designed by their artwork creator for said album, Paris. It’s one of Coldplay’s most energetic music videos and continues to be a glowing inspiration for fans of the uplifting track.
3. Every Teardrop Is A Waterfall

22 Strawberry Swing

A unique, largely animation based video for the uplifting ‘Viva’ track. Fans went nuts for the escapade as ‘superhero’ Chris Martin, presumably playing the role of Umbrella Man, encountered a well-equipped squirrel. The lyrics of ‘Lost’, “You may be a big fish in a little pond…” were fitting for this video, as Chris gets swallowed by a over-sized fish, during his quest to rescue the princess, from the claws of the evil squirrel! It’s mad, yes, and we all love it!
2. Strawberry Swing

11 The Scientist

Here it is, the most popular Coldplay music video among fans, which comes as no surprise! 90 million views on a 2002 music clip, re-uploaded 4 years ago is not bad at all, as it ranks #3 behind ‘Paradise’ and ‘Viva La Vida’ in total view counts. The video itself, which the ‘Magic’ and ‘True Love’ director wanted to originally film was directed by Jamie Thraves. Coldplay’s lead singer had to spend a few months learning to sing the song backwards. Chris walks backwards through the streets of London and other nearby locations for the story, where Chris’ female passenger flies out of a car windscreen, after a car accident.  The band won big at the MTV Video Music Awards, gaining Best Group Video, Best Direction, and Breakthrough Video for the now legendary video!
1. The Scientist

Continue Reading

Trouble

Yes

Trouble” is a piano-based ballad that underwent many stages of development. In September 1999, the song was dominated by fast guitar riffs and aggressive vocals reminiscent of Supergrass. This version can be previewed on the Tour Diary of the Live 2003 DVD. By November, live performances of “Trouble” began to incorporate the piano. At the final recording sessions for Parachutes, the song was slowed down to its current form with the new guitar and percussion pieces.

Trouble is the third single from Coldplay’s debut album Parachutes. This was the band’s second Top 10 hit on the UK Singles Chart. Regional singles were released for UK/Europe, Norway (Live EP), and Australia (Double A-side). Promo releases included the UK, USA, and Taiwan.


Contents

  1. “Brothers & Sisters (New Version)” – 4:50

  2. “Shiver (Jo Whiley’s Lunchtime Social)” – 4:23

Cover images

UK/European video

“Trouble” music video

The original UK/European version of “Trouble” was directed by Sophie Muller, a frequent collaborator with artists like No Doubt, Eurythmics, and Blur.

In the video, Chris Martin is bound by his hands and feet to a chair in a freezing cold, dark warehouse at night. The other three band members are standing on an upper-floor balcony in dim light, watching Chris struggle with the ropes tying him to the chair. A black BMW and various other cars repeatedly circle Chris, their headlights shining and casting a silouhette of Chris singing.

Eventually another chair on the balcony is revealed when Jon Buckland and Will Champion turn on Guy Berryman and start fighting him. They drag him over to the chair as Chris spins on his seat and sings, while watching Guy getting incarcerated. Guy is tied to the chair in similar fashion to Chris and his head forced by hand to look forward. At this point, Chris’s struggling causes his chair to tip over, and Chris hits the ground on his side. He sings the final line of the song {“They spun a web for me…“), before the darkness suddenly turns to daylight.

A beautiful sunrise is then revealed, but as the camera zooms out, it is revealed to be fake and part of a large theater set, with Chris still lying on his side, tied to the chair.


US video

“Trouble” US Version

In October 2001, a newer version of “Trouble” was created for US audiences and it featured the entire band. The video is directed by Tim Hope and follows the motif of “Don’t Panic” by showing the band as two-dimensional cut-outs. The band are aboard a horse carriage that cruises along a forest. On the top of a mountain we see a woman inside a house, watering the plants. A little crow flies from the carriage up to the house, where it transforms into a more menacing bird. It flies over the house and turns into a black cloud, which pours rain onto the land. The rain burns little holes on the things it falls into, and crow feathers protrude from the holes. Finally a tornado grabs the house and lifts it from its foundations placing it along others in a more suburban setting.

Its lush visuals earned Tim Hope an MTV Video Music Award for Best Art Direction in 2002. It was also nominated for Breakthrough Video.


The Oracle on Trouble


April 11, 2012 – submitted by Ryan, Australia

Q. Hi Oracle,

I was just wondering why are there two music videos for Trouble?

The Oracle replies:

The first Troublevideo was deemed too dark for the U.S audiences so a second one was made. The second bears more than a passing resemblance to their video for Don’t Panic as both were directed by Tim Hope.

September 4, 2009 – submitted by Kevin, United States of America

Q. Hello great and wise Oracle!

I know there’s an alternate Trouble video that was rejected in the States for being “too dark”. Now that Coldplay is as big as they are, do you think this video will see the light of day again??

The Oracle replies:

That video was the original not the alternative so it hasn’t been hidden away; should be easy to find online given that it wasn’t banned or anything.

September 23, 2010 – submitted by Frances, Mexico

Q. Hi Oracle :B

Wazzuuup?

My question is… is the girl from the Trouble video the same of The Scientist video ?

thanks for answer !!

The Oracle replies:

As mentioned before Elaine Cassidy is the actress in the The Scientist video. As I am sure you know there are two video for Trouble; there isn’t a girl in the original video and Elaine didn’t appear in Tim Hope’s alternative U.S version so the short answer is no.

January 23, 2009 – submitted by Mary Anne, United States of America

Q. Dear Oracle,

Coldplay got a major start in the US with Trouble. But out of curiousity, was there a time that Trouble was not the mellow piano ballad that we’re used to hearing now (released on the Parachutes LP)? And if so, is there a way that I can find a copy of the song? Thank you for your time. 😀

The Oracle replies:

I know not of a time that Trouble was not a mellow piano ballad… There has only ever been this version. The only other time I have heard Trouble played another way was a very short clip on their Live 2003 DVD of a sound check but it was never performed.

August 21, 2008 – submitted by Navid, United Kingdom

Q. Dear oracle

Why did the band wanted to make two different videos for Trouble? and I still don’t know which ones the official one!

The Oracle replies:

It wasn’t the band’s decision to have 2 videos for Trouble. The U.S label commissioned the second one because it was thought that the original one (you know, the one featuring Chris tied to a chair) was too dark for the American market, so a lighter, brighter alternative version was made.


Lyrics


Oh no, I see
A spider web is tangled up with me
And I lost my head
And thought of all the stupid things I’d said

Oh no, what’s this?
A spider web and I’m caught in the middle
So I turned to run
And thought of all the stupid things I’d done

I never meant to cause you trouble
I never meant to do you wrong
And I, well if I ever caused you trouble
Oh no, I never meant to do you harm

Oh no, I see
A spider web and it’s me in the middle
So I twist and turn
But here am I in my little bubble

Singing and I never meant to cause you trouble
I never meant to do you wrong
And I, well if I ever caused you trouble
Oh no, I never meant to do you harm

They spun a web for me
They spun a web for me
They spun a web for me…

   

Continue Reading

Safety EP

Safety EP Album Cover

The Safety EP was the first public release by English band Coldplay. It was recorded over a weekend during May 1998, and was intended as a demo for record companies. It was financed by the band and their manager Phil Harvey for around £200.

Everyone involved was so pleased with the finished product that they decided to pay for 500 copies to be manufactured for distribution around London, however only 50 copies ever made it to record stores, as they gave most of the copies away to record companies and their friends and families.[1] The EP is such a rarity that it is known to fetch in excess of £2000 on eBay.

The cover photo of singer and pianist Chris Martin was taken by John Hilton, a friend of the band. It was revealed that it was him on Coldplay’s timeline on their website.


Track listing

  1. “Such a Rush” – 4:56

Artwork


On June 10th 2010, the official Coldplay site [2] begun a new series of news articles that focus on interviewing the designers of some of the artwork to their previous releases. They began with Coldplay’s very first release, the self-funded Safety EP, of which only 500 copies were released in May 1998. Its cover was designed by a friend of the band, John Hilton.

Hi John. So you designed Coldplay’s first two covers.

I did, yeah. The Safety one and the Brothers & Sisters one.

How did you meet them?

I was friends with Jonny from school. In fact, I was in a band with him in sixth form. When he moved to London for university, I moved to Birmingham to do an art course. They started doing their band stuff and I’d come down to visit them in halls of residence. I was doing photography at the time, so I was taking lots of photographs of them when they first started.

And how did you come to design the Safety EP cover?

My course was a a commercial art course, so I asked if I could do a cover for one of my projects. And they were happy to do that. At the time, nobody really thought they were going anywhere, so nobody was that bothered!

Where is that photograph from?

It’s just a photograph that I took of Chris. Just a really blurry picture. And the Safety bit actually came from the little bit of writing on the top of the camera film. I just dropped the negative down and it came out on the print.

Is that where it got its title from?

I think so, yeah. They were happy just to leave it there. So the name came from the picture.

Where’s the picture of Chris from?

Probably from a gig at the Laurel Tree, in London.

Is it deliberately blurred?

Well, there were just loads of pictures, all in black and white. There were blurred ones and sharp ones, but that one just looked nicely weird. I suppose at the time, I was justifying it as trying to capture him moving around the stage and being all crazy. And it also it fitted in with that dark, Radiohead-y thing that everyone was into at the time.

Did you create the Coldplay logo too?

I can’t actually remember who did that. But I might well have done.

Did you have other ideas for that cover?

I think there’s a sketch book somewhere full of other ideas. There were even more Brothers & Sisters. I’ve got a whole notebook somewhere where Chris and the boys have written comments on each picture, saying things “No, I don’t like this one, it’s too spooky” or whatever. And then eventually we’d narrow it down to the one that they liked.

Were they taking the band quite seriously by this point?

Oh, definitely. At the time I did think they were going to get big, and I was telling all my mates at college about them. I remember when they did start making it, I was like “See, I told you!” It did always seem like they’d get somewhere. I’d go up with them to In The City or whatever to help put up posters and that sort of thing. It was obvious they were really good, but whether you got that lucky break or not was another thing. Happily, they did.

Were they demanding about the Safety EP cover?

No, they were quite easy with that one. The second one was a bit more difficult.

The Safety EP itself is worth quite a lot of money now.

Yeah. And guess what, I haven’t got any! At the time my dad was telling me to ask for loads of them, but I thought that’d be a bit crass! But I used to take a few copies round in my portfolio when I was trying to get work as a graphic designer. They’d started to get big by then and it was a really good way of getting jobs in design places. My two are not the most amazing covers, obviously, but they did help me get some jobs! But as a consequence, I broke all the CD cases that I had and the CDs themselves got pulled out and put in different places, so I’ve ended up with none.

It’ll cost you quite a bit to buy another.

Apparently so. I’ve heard they go for £800 on eBay.

But you’re not very proud of the cover?

Actually, I like the Safety EP one. It’s not a brilliant photograph by any means, but the reason I like it is that it’s a photograph by a kid at college of some kids at college and they went on to be a really big band. So, in that way, I’m really chuffed about it.

The Oracle on the Safety EP


May 21, 2012 – submitted by Dhamar, Mexico

Q. Hey, dear Oracle!

What’s first? Ode to Deodorant or Safety EP? I’m confused, please reply!

Greetings from all the members of the League of Latinamerican’s Coldplayers!

Thank you!

The Oracle replies:

Safety (on CD) came first in May 1998. Ode to Deodorant (on cassette) was recorded later in the same year and served as a second demo.

February 9, 2012 – submitted by Josh, United Kingdom

Q. Dear Oracle, a couple of questions which will test your Coldplay knowledge.

Firstly, Ron Niblett (who produced the Safety EP) said there were 8 tracks recorded for the EP and they picked 3. What were the other 5? Did they get lost or did they go onto The Blue Room/Parachutes?

Secondly, on the Timeline there is a video relating to Coldplay/Starfish’s first gig at The Laurel Tree. In the video there is a song playing with lyrics “there goes another day…”, do they have a lot of unreleased old songs recorded and is there any way of getting them/could you envisage them ever being released somehow?

Thanks!

Josh

The Oracle replies:
I have a cassette in storage about 200 miles away from me containing the songs recorded at that time. So Sad (the one you quoted from), Vitamins, Panic, High Speed spring to mind immediately but I am only guessing the other song was If All Else.

Panic became Don’t Panic and High Speed was re-recorded twice before it ended up on Parachutes but wasn’t initially considered.
As I’ve said before, there are a lot of unreleased songs but as for this little lot, they won’t be released.

January 26, 2012 – submitted by Sajni, United Kingdom

Q. I was looking online to see if I could buy the Saftey EP and I was shocked to find that it is about £1000 – £3000 I was just wondering why it is so expensive? Is it because it is now an antique item and because they have stopped making the CD’s? Thanks!!

The Oracle replies:

Not exactly no. There were only 500 copies of the Safety EP pressed up back in 1998 and none since. That makes the EP an incredibly rare and much sought after item which is why the price is so high.

January 23, 2012 – submitted by Wde Le, Netherlands

Q. Q. Hello Oracle!

Why is the Safety – EP called Safety? There is no song on it that’s called Safety.

So: why?

The Oracle replies:

Well, there doesn’t have to be a song with the title of an EP or album but in answer as to why, it’s because when the photo of the cover was developed, the word safety was still visible on the camera film. From negative to print it remained.

December 21, 2011 – submitted by Britt, United States of America

Q. Hello, Oracle! I have a CD copy of the Safety Room EP, but I’m not sure if it’s the original 1999 version or the 2001 re-release. Is there any way to tell the difference?

The Oracle replies:

Unless I am going mad, do you mean The Blue Room? The Saftey EP was never re-released… It was ‘released’ in 1998 too so that would rule it out.

It’s hard to know with The Blue Room but I’m not sure it would make much difference in financial worth or investment terms.

April 4, 2011 – submitted by John, United States of America

Q. Why did Coldplay name the Safety E.P. as they did?

The Oracle replies:

There’s an interview with the band’s lovely friend John Hilton who took the photo for the Safety E.P cover. He explains that the name came about accidentally from a piece of the camera film…

March 14, 2011 – submitted by Rolando, Peru

Q. Dear Oracle, does it exist a vinyl edition of the Safety EP?

The Oracle replies:

Safety EP was a CD only “release” so there isn’t a vinyl.

April 14, 2010 – submitted by Gemma, United Kingdom

Q. I have a rare copy of Coldplay’s Safety ep. What makes it even rarer is it comes enclosed with a signed letter to Jo Whiley begging her to play the CD – then a demo of sorts – on her radio show. I read a couple of years ago that the Safety ep could make around £2,000 and wondered if you had any idea how much my copy, complete with letter, would be worth? Am open to offers – even from Chris and co if they want to retrieve their letter for old time’s sake!

The Oracle replies:

Well the band won’t be buying that back seeing as though erm, it was theirs in the first place! Anyway, the Safety EP usually fetches around the £1,000 mark rather than double that amount. Your signed letter does make the item more desirable but it would depend on whether it was signed by the whole band and I guess who wrote it. At the time it would have been either Phil or Chris and of course Chris would be of more value in that scenario.

Or you could always auction it for charity presuming that particular CD was intended to – and yet didn’t – reach Jo Whiley?

September 24, 2009 – submitted by Mehmet, Turkey

Q. Who is the man on the cover of Safety EP?

The Oracle replies:

That photograph was taken by the band’s friend John Hilton and it’s of Chris Martin.

July 7, 2009 – submitted by Matthew, United States of America

Q. Dear wise one,

Firece Panda Records Re-released Brothers and Sisters due to its extreme limited first run production. Are there any plans to do the same for the Safety ep? I think I speak for many Coldplay fans whose CD collections are incomplete without it. I understand that the original recordings can be found on other CD singles but it’s nice to have the CD itself with album art. If there are no plans I think it would be a great idea….Just a thought. Please let me know what you think. If you can post this I would like everyone to know, if you have an original copy of the Safety ep….name your price. Thank you!

The Oracle replies:

Safety goes for around £1000 these days but I would never sell mine! There’ll never be a re-release as it was for demo purposes only. Plus all the original recordings have appeared on official releases now, so you can have those…

Check the discography to see the singles which contain the Safety tracks.

   

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