Why in the hell is everybody and their ex-girlfriend so entranced by Chris Martin?
Is it his average good looks? His vanilla-flavored voice and songwriting? His flagrant narcissism? Why has our culture power-lifted the man and his borderline crappy band to Lou Reed of Soft Rock Piano Ballads-status?
And why does it prove that our culture is steadily slushing shallower and shallower?
Since breaking onto the international music scene with the release of the average song “Yellow” at the turn of the century, Coldplay have proven an incredible talent for producing songs which feature leading man Martin singing a drab falsetto, and videos which feature him walking, mostly. NME magazine compared his band to such famously average bands as Travis, Oasis, and The Verve, and even Radiohead (mistakenly, of course, as Radiohead is an awesome band), mostly because of their ability to couch sappy lyrics about everything being beautiful within boring piano melodies. If Thom Yorke is the squirmy, ugly dropout with ADD blinking frenetically in the front of the classroom, then Martin is the daydreaming goofball weighing every possible rhyme for the word, ‘you’ for his girlfriend in the back.
Most critics consider A Rush of Blood to the Head to be Coldplay’s greatest album thus far. They are correct — the songs border on listenable — though it’s really just the defining mix-tape for an entire generation seeking emotional highs to replace the lonely void in their hearts left by cheap substitutive media. A lyrical highlight from “The Scientist” reveals Martin’s impotent description of a break-up: "Nobody said it was easy / Oh it's such a shame for us to part / Nobody said it was easy / No one ever said it would be so hard."
Such a crime that the twenty thousand or so people at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City November 16th will probably never hear of Conor Oberst.