It said something that the optimistic euphoria of Coldplay’s last single ‘Every Tear Drop Is A Waterfall’ was more palatable when it was covered by Robyn. The music-makes-it-all-better sentiment and the day glo rhythms felt slightly forced coming out of Chris Martin’s mouth, whereas there was an ease and conviction to the whole thing when Ms Carlsson was delivering the same lines.
‘Mylo Xyloto’ is set to reverberate with more pop sensibilities- Rihanna is to make an appearance on ‘Princess Of China’, so it’s no surprise that new single ‘Paradise’ takes the normal Coldplay model and gives it a chart-friendly make over.
There’s the dropped drum beat, the vaguely dubstep-like bassline and the “Para-para-paradise” hook of the chorus. This is all played over a New Age-ish sounding backing; strings, the familiar simple piano riff and, eventually, a choir who intone a “Woah-oh-oh-oh” line.
It’s hard to say what the band is aiming for with the song. To replicate he epic football stadium “moment” of ‘Yellow’? The energy of a ‘Viva La Vida’? If so it doesn’t quite work on either count.
‘Paradise’ feels both slightly listless and muddled. The “hip” new sonic treatments sound out of date (there’s a mid-noughties vibe about the whole thing) and the chorus comes off as a weak facsimile of what Coldplay have done effortlessly in the past; specifically that people-uniting aspect.
Whilst Coldplay’s pop makeover may be – for them at least- quite revelatory, it feels like Chris Martin’s populist songwriting tendencies have been clipped. Ultimately it feels like a few steps back rather than forward.
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Coldplay – from the archive: