Music: Coldplay’s “Mylo Xyloto”, by Rishi Gerald – Part 1

2011 has been a year of incredible friction. We are nearing a global economic recession and the immediate future may not seem promising. People have lost hope, and anger seems to be on the rise. We have also seen 2011 as a year of incredible uprising, hope and transformation. The Syrian youth want change and have used the Internet to interconnect and speak in a united voice. But it isn’t just the Syrian youth who are marching for equality and freedom. Millions of people in the so-called developed countries are making a stand against greed and classism with the Occupy movement, and millions are saying no to the political and police strong-arm tactics that we witnessed around the world in 2010.

The streets are alive with peaceful rebellion. Despite what Gill Scott Heron sang in his song “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”, this revolution has been televised. It has also been tweeted, Facebooked, YouTubed and hashtagged. The revolution is igniting sparks. Perhaps 2012 is the year for a fervent spark to take hold and catch fire.

Similar to U2, Coldplay have been known to voice politics within its music. So it is no coincidence that this band’s new record, Mylo Xyloto, reflects this fervent spark and voices with a sense of urgency that says, no holds barred, unapologetically, “A change is here.” After 15 years of making music, this is likely Coldplay’s biggest sounding record yet. I think Coldplay has captured in it, a spirit of hope, transformation and possibility.

Mylo Xyloto sounds like a musical revolution, full of promise and potential. The first time I heard the record,  I felt it in my heart. Goosebumps were taking over my arms. The hair on the back of my neck stood up and my heart was being blown wide open. It reminded me of the voice of the Occupy movement. It seems as though Coldplay has tapped into the collective conscious of the street and channeled it into some of the new record. Despite at least one of the tracks being a total miss, I highly recommend the record. Let’s take a closer look at some of the tracks.

We’ll start with the cut that should not have made it on the record: Princess Of China. Is it Techno? Is Chris Martin trying to rap? And why is Rihanna singing on a Coldplay record?

Princess of China sounds like the reason the Occupy movement happened in the first place: rich people doing whatever they want out of a sense of privilege. I doubt this was Coldplay’s intention. The unlikely collaboration with synths, rock and R&B superstar Rihanna tries to be innovative, current and hard. It tries to bridge genres in the way that Aerosmith and Run DMC did so well. However, it does not come across as innovative. Instead it sounds more like a record label executive decision with product placement as its primary motive. Did Coldplay owe Rihanna a favour? Something went wrong. In my opinion, this misfit track should not have been on the record.

Okay, now I have got that off my chest, let’s look at the tracks that do work — and believe me, there are plenty of them…

Continued in Part 2.
Rishi GeraldRishi Gerald is the CEO of Kupid’s Play Records. He describes Kupid’s Play like this: “Kupid’s Play is the Sound of the I Am Revolution. As an international record label devoted to raising global consciousness we bring awakened artists to the commercial mainstream. Our vision extends beyond a traditional record label. We know impossibilities are not real and build non-traditional revenue models by embracing new technologies in the current economic landscape. We know music is everywhere. Kupid’s Play actively seeks out creative opportunities to get its artists’ music to their fans in new ways ensuring that the Sound of the I Am Revolution is heard.” With two decades of experience in the music industry, Rishi has been nominated for numerous marketing awards and earned a Gold Record in the music industry for management.