It's been a week since I made the first purchase of "new music" since I bought The Eagles record at Christmas. I must say, this is a very nice piece of music. Throughout this album, I hear U2 (of course), Pink Floyd, Zeppelin and yes, a tinge of the Beatles here and there. While it won't rank with "Dark Side of The Moon" or any of those great albums, it'll come darn close.
It starts and ends with the same U2 Police inspired riff called "Life In Technicolor", that gives it a sense of cohesiveness thoroughout the disc. The songs are arranged on the CD in the correct order, this is one of the those discs that need to be played from beginning to end in one setting (like "Dark Side" or "Abbey Road").
"Cemeteries of London" is one of a number of their songs that changes tempo a couple of times through the tune, this is a very nice song with some great guitar chops and great lyrics "...save the nightime for your weeping". This is one of many songs on the release that has a coda. Just when you think the song is done, it shifts gears again.
"Lost!" is a great U2 song with a heavy organ presence..."just because I'm hurting doesn't mean I'm hurt" That cutting "Edge" guitar in the middle makes it one of the more heavy songs. This one has emerged recently as one of my favorites on the record.
"42" is my favorite so far. Starts off sweetly with just Chris Martin and a piano, then at the 90 second mark takes off like a Zep rocket with the refrain of ...."you didn't get to heaven but you made it close", this one's a killer, then all of a sudden it stops. I just wish it was longer.
"Lovers In Japan/Reign of Love" is another one that sounds like it could be a great U2 song, and there's nothing wrong with that. It could be the influence of Brian Eno more than anything. This song would fit on "The Unforgettable Fire" real well. "Reign of Love" has a real seventies Cat Stevens feel to it, another excellent song.
"Yes" is my second favorite song, well produced and sounding more like Coldplay than anything else, nice tasty string break to separate the verses. Another coda that has noting to do with the song. It's almost annoying. Almost.
"Viva La Vida" is one of the best pop songs I've heard in a long time. This was the song that got me interested in this in that Itunes commercial. So, yes, I've succumbed to the cheap advertising ploy thrown my way. They got me hook, line and sinker.
"Violet Hill" This their dark Pink Floydish track. "It was a long, cold, dark December..." Nice gutar work, here. Stops down with just Chris Martin and a piano at the end of the song.
"Strawberry Swing" is one of the better tracks on the CD, well produced and well played with great dynamics. This song sounds great, such great sonic landscapes painted by Brian Eno, very Beatle-esque.
"Death and All His Friends" This is a great way to end the disk, another Floyd sounding tune until it breaks wide open in the middle. Another quality recording and the coda to the whole body of work.
The tunes are catchy, full of hooks and the dynamics on this record make it one enjoyable ride. It sounds good, the producing and mastering by Bob Ludwig are first rate. The only problem I see is reproducing this on stage. There will be lots of pre-recorded stuff in concert.
Not the masterpiece they were shooting for, but I'll give them credit for coming close. A fine release that make Coldplay maybe the best band out there (apologies to U2).
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