Perhaps the biggest rock band of this century, Coldplay instantly took the world by storm with their 2000 debut, Parachutes.
Founded in London by frontman Chris Martin and guitarist Jonny Buckland, Coldplay began as a college project that would eventually take off. Bassist Guy Berryman and drummer Will Champion fill out the rest of the band, which can be compared as a more modern day U2 or Radiohead with their flailing guitar riffs and musicial arrangements.
Coldplay instantly gained international fame in 2000 with Parachutes, off the success of their monster ballad, “Yellow.” While Parachutes was an instant hit in Europe, it took a while for it to garner a gathering in the States, though it would go on to achieve multi-platinum status. The album would win a Grammy in 2002 for Best Alternative Music Album.
The band’s success would continue to grow into 2002, with their sophomore release of A Rush of Blood to the Head. The album would churn out a plethora of huge hits, such as the rocker “In My Place” the piano ballad “The Scientist” and their biggest hit to that point, the piano rocker “Clocks.”
After just two albums, Coldplay won critics and fans over, with many already proclaiming them the biggest band in the world today, a statement that the band, specifically Martin, seemed to agree with. Rolling Stone readers voted Coldplay the best band of 2003, and won Grammys in 2003 and 2004.
In 2003, the band released X&Y, which was less critically acclaimed than the previous two albums, though still sold strong. Lead single “Speed of Sound” sounded a bit too comparable to “Clocks,” though second single “Fix You” is the type of strong rocker that the band knows how to do best. Later in the year, the band would be a headliner at the blockbuster benefit concert, Live 8.
Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends would be released in 2008, and marked a little bit of a musical change for the band. Working with legendary New Wave producer Brian Eno, the band became more experimental with their music.
The darker “Violet Hill” was the first single released, but their next single, “Viva La Vida,” would go on to be their most successful release to date, and their first to top the charts in the U.S. Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends would achieve great critical acclaim, and put the band back on top of the music industry once again.
After a standalone single, the band would release “Christmas Lights” to strong airplay. Coldplay is currently in the process of releasing their fifth album, Mylo Xyloto, later in 2011. “Every Teardrop is a Waterfall” has been released as the first single, and sounds like a hybrid between the band’s older sound and their newer more experimental sound.