Last Night: Coldplay at Toyota Center
At the risk of obliterating the last remnants of my punk-rock cred, I guess I never really understood all the Coldplay hate. Chris Martin's Ernest Lee Sincere routine puts a lot of people off, sure, and some (like my neighbor) bailed on them when they started dressing like Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, but while some of their music might be reminiscent of those songs you can't place as you're wandering through the outlet mall, Coldplay has some legitimately good tunes. So what if Martin married Gwyneth Paltrow, the heart wants what it wants.
Right, Ric Ocasek?
Rocks Off has to admit, Coldplay puts on a hell of a show. It was obvious even as the last chords of Robyn's opening set were fading out and the coverall-clad roadies started setting up that we were in for an audio/visual feast, and they didn't disappoint.
At heart, we suspect Martin and company know it would be hard to hold a modern crowd's attention through portions of their catalog, so they charge out of the gate and grab you by the throat from the outset.
Oh, does your favorite band drench the crowd in confetti during the closing number? Coldplay does it the second song, bitches (and then again two songs later). Does your favorite band sell glow sticks to wave at random intervals? Coldplay gives away free bracelets that light up by remote control!
The coolness of seeing this multicolor display last night was only slightly tempered by the nagging suspicion that the goddamn thing is now broadcasting images of my bedroom back to some giant marketing conglomerate.
Or maybe the bracelet thing was for the band's own amusement. We didn't major in psychology.
Are all of these -- confetti ("In My Place"), giant balloons ("The Scientist"), and singalongs ("Yellow," "Violet Hill") -- not-so-cheap parlor tricks designed to distract an audience from occasionally over-precious songwriting?
Perhaps, but they worked. Rocks Off won't claim the roars of approval were louder than Sunday night's One Direction show (though probably less high-pitched), but by the sound of it, whatever Martin and the boys were selling, most of us were buying it.