I am mega-impressed with Coldplay's fourth album Viva la Vida. I think Martin, Buckland, Champion and Berryman, under Brian Eno's scholarly direction, have produced one of the finest ever British albums. Many of the ten tracks on the disc steer away from plodding along traditional Colplay paths and avenues; a handful are split in distinct halves that counter each other stylistically, showing a more daring, interesting band at play. Some of the tunes, particularly Lost!, Strawberry Swing, Viva la Vida and the latter half of Yes, are golden, triumphant. The shimmering electronic pulses with which Brian Eno (I have loved this man's work ever since the ethereal Prophecy Theme, on the soundtrack to David Lynch's Dune, filled me with a sense of the sublime back in the early 80s) has enclosed the recording are exquisite. So, with Viva, Coldplay are living life to the fullest.
LJ, June 19 2008.