Coldplay’s Free Show @ Madison Square Garden

Tonight I went to the free Coldplay show at MSG. There were not many “surprises”–the show was almost identical in set list as the free Brixton Academy show, but it was super fun nonetheless. You cannot beat FREE!

Here I am in my little bubble…

Setlist: Life in technicolor (intro), Violet hill, clocks, in my place, viva la vida, Chinese Sleep Chant, god put a smile upon your face, 42, square one, trouble, lost!, strawberry swing, [yellow, Death Will Never Conquer (from gate 60, toward the back of MSG)], fix you, lovers in japan/ reign of love [outro]

Of course celebrities are fans of free as well. Folks like Kirsten Dunst, Ed Burns, Charlize Theron, and Danny Masterson (who sadly did not make it in the gossip mentions anywhere else, and who I saw on Sunday afternoon at brunch–weird).

From Gate 60:

There were many stops and mistakes during the performance, like right before they played “Chinese Sleep Chant”–when there were technical difficulties with Jonny Buckland’s equipment at the front right stage and Chris declared that “some people say we are much better as a three piece.” And right before launching into their anthem “Viva La Vida,” Chris stated, “Somehow it’s made it to number one in your country. It just goes to show that with good marketing and a handsome bass player you can achieve anything.

Coldplay–ok, Chris Martin–can be particularly cloying in their desire to seem like the “everyman band”…always polite, always humble, always suffering from a horrible guilt complex in regards to being successful, and this pattern of behavior carried through the MSG performance with Chris continuing to take knocks at himself and his fellow band members throughout the concert.

While this very un-rock star type behavior can make everyone uncomfortable at times (Seriously, it’s that whole YOU ROCK STAR, US SCREAMING FANS thing that makes concert dynamics work, Chris.), I honestly believe that deep down somewhere the men of Coldplay remain honest guys who truly do care about their fans and at their very core they are just four regular dudes who happen to sell millions of records.

During the final number, “Fix You” when Chris mucked up the lyrics from the beginning. Later in the song he improvised by singing, “Lyrics to old songs that you don’t know/And you embarrass yourself at MSG/But it doesn’t matter one bit, everyone got in for free”–one of the many times Chris brought up the fact that the tickets were gratis.

Pretty colors with lyrics projected on the video balls during “Lost”

As I was walking out, I heard some guy behind me declaring to his wife, “Oh boy, the bloggers are going to CRUCIFY them tomorrow. He [Chris Martin] messed up three times in that one song, AND they didn’t play an encore.” Er.. ok. I think the point of seeing a live show is to see a band LIVE–there are going to be mistakes! Seriously, are people predicting what bloggers are going to write about the next day? Or is saying “oh boy, the bloggers are going to write about this…” a “safe” way of putting forth your own questionable opinions?

It was a little disappointing that there was no encore, but hey–maybe they were paying MSG by the hour. But probably with all that merchandise they sold (commemorative concert tees with “VIVA” and “VIVA LA VIDA” cost $30, posters cost $10) helped them recoup any of the money they shelled out do put this show on.

Anyway, I thought the concert was a great. I would say that some of the new songs did fall a little flat with the crowd due to their slow and/or non-sing-a-long nature (“Chinese Sleep Chant” and “42”), but others were tremendous fun (“Lost” and “VLV”). A little sad they didn’t do some of my CP faves like “Shiver” or “Everything’s Not Lost,” but I suppose some songs had to get the boot in order to play the new diddys. (Not everyone can play 3 1/2 hour shows like Ryan Adams.)

The boys are also on the cover of the new June 2008 issue of SPIN:


11 Replies to “Coldplay’s Free Show @ Madison Square Garden”

  1. yea why didnt they do an encore?? i was really disappointed with that. but it was a really good show other than that

  2. Isn’t the point of an encore for the band to celebrate the awesome show and give you a little more? Just asking. I don’t really know. Maybe Chris was pissed at himself for f***ing up!

  3. Does anyon know the name of the DJ that was on right before Coldplay came out? I really liked what he was playing and thought it was very trippy.

    Any idea of who he was?

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