I haven’t listened to Coldplay’s Viva La Vida since I first bought it six years ago.
I had enjoyed their first two albums, 2000’s Parachutes and especially 2002’s A Rush of Blood to the Head, but 2005’s X&Y was a mixed bag.
Viva La Vida was met with critical raves for the most part, so I had high hopes. But my first listen was quite underwhelming and I never gave it a second.
On their first few albums, Coldplay was a band that sounded like Radiohead (pre-OK Computer) but wanted to be U2. On Viva La Vida, Coldplay is a band that sounds like U2 but wants to be Radiohead (post-OK Computer).
Though they have a proven knack for emotionally resonant arena rock, they’ve opted to get “artistic” instead. And by artistic, I mean they’ve largely thrown aside such quaint concepts as melodies, choruses and intelligible vocals.