Coldplay's eighth studio album, “Everyday Life,” consists of powerful messages of peace and love among all people. The album depicts the devastating effects surrounding police brutality in the U.S., shedding light on the injustice. The album is divided: Some songs containing spiritual and uplifting lyrics, while others are dark and unsettling. Inspired by the Middle East, the album contains both Middle Eastern and Western instruments.
“Sunrise,” the first track, offers a promising start into the album with its peaceful sounds, despite containing no lyrics. “Sunrise” promotes peace, alluding to the overall message of the album. Other soothing songs include “When I need a Friend,” “WOTW / POTP” and “Èkó.” Spirituality and beauty are common themes throughout these tracks. “Èkó” is especially mesmerizing, as it creates imagery of the African city Èkó Atlantic and its strong features such as winding rivers and stars in the sky.
One of the best “spiritual” songs on the album is “BrokEn,” which is dedicated to the band’s former producer, Brian Eno. The song is airy and slow but emanates positivity and peace with lyrics such as, “Oh, shine a light (Oh, shine a light) / And I know (Ooh-ooh) / That in the darkness I'm alright (I'm alright) / See there's no sun rising (Ooh-ooh) / But inside I'm free (Ooh-ooh) / ’Cause the Lord will shine a light for me.” Another mesmerizing track includes “Cry, Cry, Cry,” which depicts a protector-like figure serenading a loved one. Lead singer Chris Martin’s serenades listeners, his voice is incredibly soothing making the song sound like a lullaby.
Another powerful track on the album is “Arabesque,” which prompts peacemaking on a global scale. The song targets the war on terrorism, specifically in Islamic countries. Influenced by these current events, lyrics like, “I could be you, you could be me / Two raindrops in the same sea / You could be me, I could be you / Two angles of the same view / And we share the same blood,” further emphasizes the idea that all people are one. “Arabesque” incorporates both Western and Middle Eastern rhythms.
Darker songs highlight the continuing crises in Middle Eastern countries, including the bombings and war from the perspectives of refugees. “Trouble in Town” and “Orphans” both discuss racial profiling and injustice with lyrics such as, “Because they cut my brother down / Because my sister can't wear her crown / There's trouble, there's trouble in town / Blood on the beat (Oh-oh) / Oh my goodness, there's blood on the beat / Law of the jungle or the law of the street / There's blood on, there's blood on the beat,” and how these factors have led to a rift in peace. Both songs are dark and unsettling but are necessary to discuss, as these issues still remain a problem to this day.
Another powerful song is “Champion of the World.” It’s a tribute to Scott Hutchison, the lead singer of Frightened Rabbit who had depression and committed suicide in 2018. The track emphasizes what those with depression may go through. Also, the song “Daddy” is a slow, somber track about a neglectful relationship between a father and son and how the son is affected by the loss of his father. It’s deeply impactful, as the combination of Martin’s soulful voice and piano riff in the background leaves a lasting impact.
The only track that felt out of place was “Guns.” Despite its relevant message regarding the pressure for gun regulation in a nation divided over a rising number of mass shootings, the delivery of the vocals and the beat don’t fit in with the rest of the album. It’s weirdly country-sounding, and Martin’s voice is semi abrasive.
The closing track, “Everyday Life,” ends the album on a positive note, expressing the need for love, equality, peace, perseverance and other messages reiterated throughout each track. The lyrics “Cause everyone hurts, everyone cries / Everyone tells each other all kinds of lies / Everyone falls, everybody dreams and doubts / Got to keep dancing when the lights go out” shows that all people are one, even on a global scale, and that there needs to be peace to thrive as a whole.
Contact Claire Reilly at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more on the culture, arts and lifestyle of the JMU and Harrisonburg communities, follow the culture desk on Twitter @Breeze_Culture.