Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Coldplay Viva La Vida at the Garden

BOSTON--(Oct.29, 2008) Coldplay, the popular British rock band, performs in front of a sold out crowd at TD Banknorth Garden on their Viva La Vida tour.

By Margaret DeJesus (

BOSTON--(Oct. 29,2008) “It’s going to be a good one,” said Chris Martin, the lead singer of Coldplay, into the microphone at the start of the concert. In fact, it was a great one.

Martin, along with Jonny Buckland on guitar, Guy Berryman on bass and Will Champion on drums, put on a brilliant show before the sold out crowd at TD Banknorth Garden on Wednesday night.

The spectacle of spacey lights and effects enhanced their solid performance and kept the Garden rocking for the 90 minute set.

Coldplay opened strong with “Violet Hill,” the thundering first single off of their latest album “Viva La Vida.”

Then the group wasted no time delving into old favorites like “Clocks,” “In My Place,” and “Speed of Sound.”

The stage appeared deceivingly plain initially with the French Revolution themed album cover serving as a backdrop for the first few songs. When the bright lights dimmed, the backdrop became a giant screen for "Cemeteries of London." Large spheres hung above like planets switching between colors and live images of the band performing while laser lights calmly swayed up and down.

Martin and his bandmates fed off of the crowd's energy.

The lead singer was practically drowned out by the choir of 19,000 singing along with him on the rock ballad “Fix You.”

Whether he was twirling, leaping, or making monkey noises for laughs, Martin seemed to enjoy bouncing around the stage.

“Incredible singing on a Wednesday night,” he said afterward to the crowd’s delight.

The new material went over well too.

With arms outstretched in the air he bellowed out, “It’s such a perfect day,” the chorus of “Strawberry Swing,” while the fans clapped the rhythm in unison.

Buckland’s guitar solo on the song “42”, which starts out pretty mellow like the Coldplay of old and then explodes into a new realm of rock, got many members of the crowd to play along on air guitar.

After a heartfelt rendition of “The Hardest Part,” which Martin crooned on in a lower octave than usual, “Viva La Vida” boomed out. The powerhouse anthem got the already energetic crowd, which stood for the whole set, jumping and dancing again.

It’s a wonder the band wasn’t torn to shreds by adoring fans when all four members strolled off the stage and up the steps into a section of the arena before the first encore. Yes, they walked right up into a section of the Garden, instruments and microphone in tow and played an acoustic version of “The Scientist,” a hit single from their second album.

Martin jokingly called it, “a romantic song about the governor of Alaska,” which evoked a loud mix of laughter, boos and cheers. “Politics aside, she’s an [expletive] superbabe,” he said into the microphone.

Another highlight surprisingly came in the form of “Lovers in Japan,” a hidden gem on the latest album. Thousands of confetti butterflies in various colors fluttered about after they were dropped from the ceiling. Fans tried to catch them as they fell to the ground.

Duffy opened the night on a weak note. The Welsh singer responsible for the repetitive pop anthem "Mercy" wasn't able to hold the crowd's attention with her high pitched, old fashioned voice. But soulful songs like "Stepping Stone,"which sounds like it came right out of a James Bond movie, showed her potential.

Coldplay's live set, weaving hits from past and present together, proved the band has grown and for the better. With less reliance on soft ballads and piano, they conveyed a healthy mix of guitar, bass and pure fun in their performance.

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