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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Music Midtown 2011: Coldplay leaves us nearly speechless

Coldplay. It was the one word dancing across everybody's lips. The crowd was rife with joyful anticipation, and echoing cheers erupted the second the roadies stepped onstage to set up. About an hour before the band's set was scheduled to begin, the fans suddenly burst into song, the melody of Viva La Vida issuing forth from the crowd in unison. My friend Jordan and I turned to each other in awe, and at that moment, I knew that this show would truly be like nothing I had ever experienced or even imagined before.

Heralding Coldplay's grand entrance, the music heard before the "feature presentation" at movie theaters blasted through the giant speakers. Then golden fireworks exploded into the air as huge balloons of many colors bounced and flew over the heads of the fans. As the band hit its first note, colorful lasers wove and spread overhead. Even if I could have been heard over the near 40,000 people that stood behind us, I would have been speechless. The beauty and the spectacle of it all was just astounding! And there we were, in the very front row, drinking it all in.

Filled with yellow light, the stage shined in the darkness as they fittingly played their hit Yellow. A few tunes later, frontman Chris Martin suggested that the fans join in to "do one together if that's alright with you," launching into Nobody Said It Was Easy. The fans responded eagerly as voices all across the park rose up in unison to sing the song. Coldplay soon followed this with a cover of R.E.M.'s Everybody Hurts in honor of their recent breakup. Tears filled the eyes of many in the crowd as they played the tribute to this band from our very own town that they dearly loved as well.

Honestly, I couldn't believe the love this internationally acclaimed band had for each and every one of their fans and all of those bands that rocked the stage with them too. Singer Chris even managed to slip shoutouts to the Black Keys and Cage the Elephant into their song Politik. As the beat of the drums and the powerful bass vibrated through every part of my body during their set, I pinched myself just to make sure I wasn't dreaming. The lights, the sounds, the joy... I was just in shock from it all. Much too soon, the band left the stage, but we all knew they'd be back. To lure them out for the inevitable encore, the fans surprised me once again. Rather than yelling for it or merely cheering, they joined together and, in one voice, sang the melody of Viva La Vida once more. Overcome by the beauty of this, I merely listened to them, amazed and utterly content. Not a minute went by before Coldplay was back yet again, to finish out the night with a cover of Georgia On My Mind which flowed seamlessly into their final tunes.

Music Midtown was, without a doubt, one of the coolest, most unbelievable experiences I've ever been lucky enough to have. What a mind-blowingly amazing night!

For all of our coverage of the exciting experience that was Music Midtown 2011, click here!

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