First and foremost, Wal-Mart is offering copies of Coldplay's latest album for the low cost of ten bucks, a price that entails more bang for your buck via the sounds of one of the music scene's biggest bands. Three years in the making, Viva la Vida is a testament to the band's growth that does not come at the expense of departing too far from what makes the band incredible: stadium anthem sound, rising melodies, and deeply affecting lyrics. Given a four-star rating by Rolling Stone magazine, Viva la Vida is a singularly spellbinding effort, one that you must appreciate from track one (a wonderful instrumental entitled Life in Technicolor) all the way through. The album proves that Coldplay will continue to leave an enormous impact on the musical landscape.
5. Viva la Vida evokes Radiohead, Pink Floyd, and U2, and still sounds original.
Coldplay, much like the aforementioned bands, is a quartet that must be heard live in order to fully appreciate their energy and ability. Their latest album captures what they are capable of in live venues like Giants Stadium and Wembley Stadium, an expanse that suggests their worldwide appeal. The tracks compiled on Viva la Vida pay homage to the bands that have influenced Coldplay without going so far as ripping them off.
4. It serves as a tremendous windows-down, anthem-driven summer album.
Much like previous Coldplay efforts, Viva la Vida conveys a collection of tracks that is heavy on the melodies and sweeping piano, guitar, and string arrangements. Although quiet in parts, the album is to be enjoyed at high volumes, as it captures the aura of summer. Rather fitting, when you consider it was released three days before the summer solstice. The lyrics emote political thought and feelings on war, love, and solitude, a telling look into the mindset that sets Chris Martin and his bandmates in motion.
3. Viva la Vida sold extremely well in the U.S. and U.K.
For two weeks and counting, Viva la Vida has topped the charts in the United Kingdom and will soon unseat Lil' Wayne's Tha Carter: III as the number one album sold in America, a reign that more than likely will continue well into July. In combination with Weezer's latest album, Coldplay has started the summer season with an explosive effort that will accentuate the band's summer and fall tours with setlists enriched by stellar tunes. In addition to the band's first two singles, the tracks Lost and Strawberry Swing sill soon seep into the American music fanatic's conscious.
2. The 1-2 Punch of the Singles Viva la Vida and Violet Hill
Well before its intended June 17th release, Coldplay released the album's first single, Violet Hill, free of charge on its website, a move that helped carry the band's Billboard momentum into the last week of June. The song sounds far different from the piano-laden formula that defined their catalogue, but the repetitive rock chords emphasize the risks that Coldplay was willing to take to establish themselves as more of a rock band and less of a pop band. Then came the colorful iTunes ads that made Viva la Vida, the title track, the number one selling single in America, something the band has never accomplished in its platinum-studded tenure, even with memorable songs like Yellow, Clocks, and Speed of Sound to their credit. These two tracks are merely a sampling of the superb tunes the rest of the album doles out.
1. Chris Martin's Haunting/Uplifting/Poignant Vocals
Phil Collins is Genesis. John Fogerty was Creedence Clearwater Revival. Bono is U2 (and maybe the Edge, too). Dave Matthews is....well, the band is named for him, after all. All kidding aside, Coldplay is Chris Martin. Piece his vocals together with static and Coldplay would still sell copious amounts of records. Martin's vocal capacity has even seeped into the hip-hop realm, as he has teamed with Kanye West (Homecoming) and Jay-Z (Beach Chair) for some amazing tracks. In concert, Martin serves as the band's barometer, as his energetic performance is what bandmates Jonny Buckland (lead guitar) and Will Champion (drums) thrive off of, something that has helped encapsulate the unique sound that Viva la Vida projects.