- Life In Technicolor
- Violet Hill
- In My Place
- Glass Of Water
- Cemeteries Of London
- Fix You
- Strawberry Swing
- God Put A Smile Upon Your Face
- Talk (techno version)
- The Hardest Part (Chris Martin piano)
- Postcards From Far Away (Chris Martin piano instrumental)
- Viva La Vida
- Green Eyes
- Sitting on the Dock of the Bay / Death Will Never Conquer (Acoustic, sung by Will Champion)
- Billie Jean
- Viva La Vida (remix interlude)
- Lovers In Japan
- Death And All His Friends
- The Scientist
- Life in Technicolor II
- The Escapist (outro)
Coldplay at The Home Depot Center
This was our first visit to The Home Depot Center. We’d never seen a concert there nor had we seen a Los Angeles Galaxy MLS soccer game with the venerables David Beckham or Landon Donovan. When we first arrived, The Home Depot Center appeared like a very well thought out venue: wide concourses, well placed concession stands and plenty of room to mill about. Upon entering the stadium area, it was apparent that it was not a football or baseball stadium retrofitted as an afterthought into a soccer stadium. The field was wide but still close to the stands – which is not the case in a football stadium. The promoters smartly placed the stage on the field itself a good many feet from the back of the stadium. Two parallel ramps jutted from the stage extending into the audience bringing Coldplay’s music even closer to its fans. Little did we know that at the other end of the stadium, a smaller elevated stage atop the loge seats was set up for Coldplay to perform a few songs in the middle of the show.
There were two back up groups and with our first listen we thought that The Home Depot Center would not be an enjoyable acoustic event. I’m sure that they sound great on a CD but this was not to be their night. The sound was tinny and jumbled, made worse when some of the musicians tried to get the crowd more excited with shouts of “I can’t hear you” or ‘How you doin’ LA?”. Frankly, we couldn’t wait for the first acts to leave the stage. Again, it was not that we didn’t enjoy their music. It was how their music was transmitted that made for an uneasy experience.
But, then Coldplay appeared on stage at about 9:30pm (the concert began at 7:30pm). While the acoustics did not equal those of The Wiltern in Los Angeles or The Colloseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, it was still impressive. From far away, the low setting of on-stage lighting precluded us from making out the figures of Chris Martin (lead vocals, keyboards, guitar), Jonny Buckland (lead guitar), Guy Berryman (bass guitar), and Will Champion (drums, backing vocals, other instruments).
The concert ended up as a brilliant experience. Chris Martin has an easy way about him and is quite comfortable talking with the crowd. He is honest in his singing and musicianship. He will admit when a song is not performed as planned as he did at the end of the song “42” when he fumbled the timing and the lyrics. During the mishap, he inserted some fun lines of banter and rhyme relating to Los Angeles but then quickly admitted why he was doing so.
Chris Martin seemed to get sronger with each song and the fun he was having infected the crowd, even those of us laying on the grass “12 miles away”, as he remarked.
My brother’s favorite Coldplay song of the evening was Lovers in Japan because of the melody and lyrics but also because he got to witness Chris Martin’s mastery of the keyboards. My favorite tune is 42 and although the end was miscued a bit, the soft beginning, melodramatic middle and rousing end were stunning and moving. The song of the night, however, and as expected, was Viva La Vida, which gave the crowd an instant rise after the more laid back Postcards From Far Away was performed. We also must mention the tribute to Michael Jackson. Coldplay sung their version of Billie Jean – an acoustic rendition. Although the tonalities between Jackson and Martin are different, Martin hit every high and low note with utter dexterity and perfection. The song was performed at the other end of the stadium, up on a makeshift stage directly in front of the grass area where we were sitting. It was one of the highlights of the evening.
All in all, the experience was wonderful. I was introduced to The Home Depot Center, its decent acoustics, the reality that it is not so far away from the San Fernando Valley, and the reality that I need to go see a Galaxy game soon… and more concerts. Most importantly, I was able to witness the musicianship of the second coming of U2 – that is, if Coldplay can continue to record albums with the same quality of lyric and melody as Viva la Vida, X&Y and Parachutes. Studio albums are packaged for the masses. Live concerts let the audience in on a groups’ true interpretation of a song – lyrics and instrumentation included. In this regard, Coldplay did not disappoint.