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The Live Experience – The music vs the show

ColdplayOur intrepid reporter Mrs.Morrissey attended last nights Coldplay show at Hampden in Glasgow. We’re not carrying a review because it’s Coldplay and it doesn’t count. You know what Coldplay sound like and, in simplistic terms, you’ll know whether you would have enjoyed it or you wouldn’t have. They are Coldplay. They played all the Coldplay hits, and 50,000 people ohwoahwoahed to that one which sounds like ‘Walking on Broken Glass.’ Coldplay remain, like Snow Patrol, not as risible as Razorlight but still not worth actually listening to.

What did seem interesting – yep, Coldplay gig notwithstanding – was a little set-piece they did. Encouraging singing, Chris Martin said ‘let’s win the X-Factor’ and the crowd sang along, only to be greeted by the visage of Simon Cowell on the big screen, lambasting them in parodic style. This was then repeated, only this time he was full of praise for the second attempt. This pre-recorded segment went down a treat with the audience. Later on there was ticker tape and flashing canons. All the fun of the fair, it seems.

It’s about striking the balance. Coldplay were charging £60 a pop to watch, essentially, four fairly dull blokes batter out some tunes in a stadium. There was little chance of achieving the intensity a new band can generate in a packed, sweaty hall. So they decided to make it a bit more interesting. Who can argue with that?

But yet….it IS a music show. Is there a line where the visuals surpass the sound? It was a huge source of contention between Jagger and Richards as the Stones got bigger, with Jagger up for ever more pageantry and Richards being all about the music, maaaaan.

U2’s live shows are now gargantuan wanks, resembling more and more music theatre and less rock concert. Springsteen’s remain stripped down, all about the songs and how they are delivered. Frankly, many people would have been at both gigs and many would have enjoyed both gigs. You can’t blame a band for trying to at least justify the exorbitant ticket price by making it an experience. But who to say who is right?

Well, you are….let us know…..

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6 Responses

  1. When bands get that size it is NOT about the music and frankly they’re better off with lasers, giant spiders etc. Unless it’s ACDC.

  2. Kiss shoot rockets from their guitars. That’s pretty cool.

  3. i think with rock there is an element of humour at play anyway. And excess.

    Coldplay….I wouldn’t imagine so.

    They must be bored being Coldplay.

  4. Well, I’m bored with them being Coldplay.

  5. They just got sued by Joe Satriani.

    I think that tells its own story.

  6. AC/DC had a giant train that crashed through the stage at the start, and an enormous blow up stocking-wearing bird during whole lotta Rosie, so noone is immune. Although there was a good deal more mysogyny in the AC/DC stuff than Coldplay’s I bet, old Gwenyth wouldn’t let them away with any of that nonsense.

    When there are 50,000 people paying through the nose to watch coldplay, for fucksake, they need to do something to justify it, otherwise the vast majority of people are just sitting watching tiny boring little specks play tinny boring little songs.

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