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Released: June 2000

OK, so the lyrics are about as advanced as a Moonpig Valentine's card - Martin sounds like he's actually wetting the bed while singing - but somehow it all comes together into one of the great indie anthems of the 21st century. When all is said and done and Chris Martin awkwardly shuffles off towards the pearly gates, this is what he'll be judged by. And it's easy to see why 'Yellow' was Coldplay's breakthrough song. Falsetto-led in that then-modish post-'OK Computer' way, and aching with a sense of puppyish romantic devotion, it was - and is - scientifically impossible not to like. (MW)

How We Wrote 'Yellow'
Will Champion, drums

"We were recording 'Shiver' at the time. We had just finished it, I think, and we were all sitting around the studio in south Wales. We had been in the city for months, and you never get to see the sky properly when you're in the city, because of all the street lamps and that.

When we were out in the middle of the country, in the middle of Wales, it was just absolutely clear sky. You could see all the stars in the sky. It was just an amazing setting. Chris [Martin] came up with the chord pattern. It started off a lot slower, more like a Neil Young kind of song, but when [guitarist] Jonny [Buckland] started playing on it and started throwing ideas in, he had that riff, and it sort of got a bit heavier.

We recorded it in the third session in Liverpool, and it was really difficult to record, because it worked at about five or six different tempos. It was a tough choice of choosing which tempo to play, because sometimes it sounded too rushed, and sometimes it sounded as if it was dragging. It was quite difficult to sort of hit it on the head, but eventually we had a great take and it happened from there."

 

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