I have been hearing Coldplay on the radio for years now. First it was “Yellow,” a song that I thought was whiny and boring. Then it was “The Scientist,” another song I thought was dreary, drawn-out, repetitive and boring (and played way too much.) Then there was “Clocks,” which was a little more upbeat but not terribly great, and too repetitive.
Most recently, I’m hearing a new song from Coldplay (I don’t know what it’s called, but the phrase “birds can fly at the speed of sound” is in it) which sounds a lot like Clocks, and today I heard yet another Coldplay song which was too indistinct for me to remember well.
Normally, I wouldn’t think a lot about this band; they’d just be yet another radio act I hear in the car or at the mall. I don’t care much for this kind of music, nor do I vehemently despise it (the way I do fratboy “guitar bands” like Jack Johnson or Howie Day - or Dave Matthew’s atrocious “American Baby.”) It just sounds like more bland radio music to me. (Right now the number one band on my playlist is Grandaddy, and I listen to a lot of MIDI and late-90’s video game music.)
Now I hear things being said like “Coldplay is the world’s biggest band” and “Coldplay’s new album, X+Y (or whatever it is) is the greatest album of all time” by people on the radio and on the internet. People are treating Coldplay like a worldwide megasensation the way the Beatles were. Is this really the case? Personally I don’t think they have what it takes, lyrically or musically, to even be in the same league as the Beatles. Why the hell are they so popular? Is it just because their singer is married to Gwenyth Paltrow and gave his kid a weird name? If that’s so, I fear for the future of music!