It is not something that I plan or make time for, but the album “A Rush of Blood to the Head”, the second Lp released by Coldplay, draws me in to listen to it in its entirety regularly. Much of my time is spent with some form of a soundtrack playing around me or directly in to the sides of my head, but despite all the music I share my time with I have few full albums that command such a strong and unified presence as this. I have seen the concept of album building and the narrative that has to be achieved recounted by several different artists of a mix of genres. Simply packaging songs together and selling them is not how it is done, but despite the lack of secrecy around the premise I have felt it fail far more times than succeed. A Rush of Blood to Head is my choice of a perfectly executed album, as it sometimes feels like it is greater than the parts it is constructed of. It ebbs and flows through quicker rock tracks like Politik and God Put a Smile On my Face, to the quiet rumination of The Scientist, and delivering tracks like the album closer Amsterdam that feel much larger than a song.
I only began listening to Coldplay three or four years ago, so it was somewhere in the honeymoon phase of that that I paid proper attention to their second (and most widely praised) sophomore record. It quickly claimed a spot in my heart, and as previously stated called me in for a complete listen with regularity. The most recent listening happened just the morning in the snowy midday of a Monday. There has been a hurricane of inner turmoil wreaking havoc through the hours of my day for, if we’re being honest, years now, but it was hitting harder than usual this morning. You second guess yourself on things that should be left alone. Feelings or thoughts that are firmly know in some part yourself to be good, healthy, and beneficial to yourself and future self. Everyone you are, have been, and could be is being slandered and dissected by an angry mob of your own self-loathing and insecurities. There is quite a bit being said by people all over about self-love and respect, but it is hard to use the words of someone else to change yourself. Over the years I have found myself entrenched in those same battles and I have learned how to personally fight back. Writing, the one thing I have ever only truly done for myself alone, at the desk of someone I love while drinking black tea to the music of Chris Martin, Will Champion, Jonny Buckland, and Guy Berryman is fighting back. A rebellion against the worst parts of myself as well as a nourishment of the better ones. I feel better right now with some hope that this feeling my stick around for at least some of the afternoon.
In the years that are to come, it would be nice to have a reliable place to retreat for strength and piece of mind, and with the recent release of Julien Baker’s second album “Turn Off the Lights” there is promise. Promise that even if I lose the feelings I currently share with ARBTH there will always been someone out there sharing their work and letting us cozy up with it for comfort.