The Ceremony: Mylo Xyloto in Review

The Players:

Chris Martin – guitars, keys, & vox

Guy Berryman – bass

Jonny Buckland  – guitars

Will Champion – drums

 

Only a real Coldplay fan would have been anticipated among millions of others for the release date of Mylo Xyloto.

It can’t be said the new Nickelback album has the same level of excitement generated by fans– Coldplay is maligned far less than Nickelback, but still hardly considered as trailblazers by naysayers. The group labored three years to prepare this release by often scrapping whole ideas in the process to put together the perfect package. This resulted is a breath of fresh air and many positive tracks that fairly quickly became fan favorites.

Much of my preparation for the album came from the live versions of several tracks already made available to the public. Initial performances were promising, and served as generous previews of the music that was to come. The album relies on using brief songs, usually less than a minute long, to serve as bridges to the songs that follow– and apparently, they hold enough merit that they are credited on their own. Fans should also beware that Chris Martin is teasing the premature end of the band after promotion of this album comes to a close– we
would certainly hope not!

The title track is only forty seconds long, but is quite a glorious opening to a glossy album overall. Hurts Like Heaven sounds nearly as great as it does live– if it were up to me, I’d single-track the vocals. It’s also a fast number, which is a word—fast―that will not align very often with the band.

Paradise is arguably more like an anthem than Every Teardrop.  Charlie
Brown
is a favorite. It is the fusion of Viva La Vida― from said album― and Talk― from X&Y.

Us Against the World shimmers in silver and gold, and is well on its way to earning my admiration. Lead single Every Teardrop is a Waterfall took a while to grow on me, but it’s much more fun than originally thought.

Major Minus channels 1990s era U2― specifically albums Zooropa and Pop― and sounds a little out of place given its ominous feel.  U.F.O. is largely unmemorable and is easily considered filler. Princess of China conjures up memories of Shiny Toy Guns’ take on Major Tom. Up
in Flames
feels right at home with some material on A Rush of Blood to the Head. Chris’s vocals find new heights by hitting some rather extraordinary notes. Don’t Let it Break Your Heart may be the most arena-rock inclined of the bunch.

Up With the Birds was partly nicked from Leonard Cohen. At first, aficionados may have assumed that it was a reference to Bird on a Wire from the 1970s, even if this composition bears little resemblance to Lenny.

Whilst there are new trails that the boys from Britain are blazing, it seems to be paying off with two top 40 singles and a potential third. But recalling the first review― “Meddle” by Pink Floyd―, there is no guarantee that the new music will find a larger audience. Despite the conceivable turn-off, this is a happy album with a very fresh offering of tracks. Perhaps the world may see an EP of leftovers from the period much like Prospekt’s March was to “Viva La Vida”― Or Death and All His Friends.

 

The Hits: Charlie Brown. Viva La Vida clone or not, it has a lot of heart and soul to it. And it’s nice that Billboard agrees.

The Pits: Major Minus. As much as Chris Martin tries to pattern his behavior and philanthropy after his boyhood friend and mentor Bono, imitation is not always the sincerest form of flattery.

Now You Know:
What is Mylo Xyloto exactly? Filipino drunken gibberish. Just kidding. A love story complete with a happy ending, Mylo Xyloto is a concept album― equivalent to a running narrative throughout the songs. The concept revolves around our ‘heroes’ Mylo and Xyloto― wink-wink― who join forces in an oppressive society.