Cold Play Band
Coldplay are a British rock band formed in 1996 by lead vocalist and keyboardist Chris Martin and lead guitarist Jonny Buckland at University College London (UCL). After they formed under the name Pectoralz, Guy Berryman joined the group as bassist and they changed their name to Starfish. Will Champion joined as drummer and backing vocalist, completing the lineup. Creative director Phil Harvey is often referred to as the fifth member by the band. The band renamed themselves "Coldplay" in 1998, before recording and releasing three EPs: Safety in 1998 and Brothers & Sisters and The Blue Room in 1999. The Blue Room was their first release on a major label, after signing to Parlophone.
Coldplay achieved worldwide fame with the release of the single "Yellow" in 2000, followed in the same year by their debut album Parachutes, which was nominated for the Mercury Prize. The band's second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head (2002), was released to critical acclaim and won awards including NME's Album of the Year. Their next release, X&Y, the bestselling album worldwide in 2005, received mostly positive reviews, though some critics felt it was inferior to its predecessor. Their fourth studio album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (2008), was produced by Brian Eno and released to largely positive reviews, earning several Grammy Award nominations and wins at the 51st Grammy Awards. In October 2011, Coldplay released their fifth studio album, Mylo Xyloto, which topped the charts in over 34 countries and was the UK's best-selling rock album of 2011, but received mixed reviews, In May 2014, they released their sixth album, Ghost Stories, which also received mixed reviews and topped the iTunes Store albums charts in over 100 countries. In December 2015, the band released their seventh album, A Head Full of Dreams, which reached the top two in most major markets, but received generally mixed reviews.
Martin once proclaimed the band's music as "limestone rock" in comparison to "hard rock". The band's music has been called "meditative" and "blue romantic"; it "[reflects] on their emotions" and Martin "endlessly examine[s] his feelings".
Coldplay started out as one of many earnest post-Britpop bands. In the late 1990s, the EPs released by the band had characteristics of dream pop, setting them apart from later studio albums. The tone of the band's first studio album Parachutes, which saw them emerge as one of the most prominent modern bands in British popular culture, was described as melodic pop with "distorted guitar riffs and swishing percussion" but also being "exquisitely dark and artistically abrasive". Such alternative rock style has been compared to bands like U2, Oasis, Radiohead and Travis. The band acknowledges the Scottish alternative rock band, Travis, as a major influence on their earlier material.
In their second studio album A Rush of Blood to the Head, the band drew inspiration from artists like Echo & the Bunnymen, Kate Bush, George Harrison and Muse. The songs in it were considered to contain "lush melodies and a heartbreak" and that they had a "newfound confidence." The music on their third release X&Y has been considered to be "ruminations on Martin's doubts, fears, hopes, and loves." It was particularly influenced by the artists Johnny Cash and Kraftwerk.