“With a record that’s as tough and passionate and delicate and intricate as X&Y, you want to sell it with dignity.”


Coldplay Delivers a Masterpiece, and the Band's Label Prepares to Send It Out to a Waiting World
All systems are go at the Capitol Tower for next Tuesday’s release of Coldplay’s X&Y, one of the year’s most anticipated albums. It’s the long-awaited follow-up to the acclaimed band’s breakthrough second album, the triple-platinum A Rush of Blood to the Head.

Considering that X&Y is almost certainly the most important album to come out on Capitol since Andrew Slater took the reins as the label’s President/CEO in early 2001, you might expect him to be suffering from a case of the pre-release jitters. Instead, Slater exudes an air of quiet confidence, convinced that Coldplay has made its masterpiece.

“I think this album signals the point in the career of these record makers where they’ve risen above a big moment in pop culture to prove that they’re going to be contributing something of value for a long time to come,” he says.

A record producer himself, Slater has a deep appreciation of Coldplay’s execution on this project. “There’s such an emotional intensity to what Chris Martin is writing about,” Slater says. “Chris has all the earnestness at his command as a singer, and his use of the falsetto is just at the right moment and underlines the phrase so eloquently. You’re seeing a band at the peak of their powers, really, as players, arrangers and writers—unobstructed by the challenge of having to deliver the third record or the confusion than can result from the many choices the technology presents you with in the studio.”

In setting up the album, Slater has been careful not to over-hype it. “With a record that’s as tough and passionate and delicate and intricate as X&Y, you want to sell it with dignity,” he explains. “The tone of what we’re trying to do is the antithesis of just beating people over the head with its brilliance.

“Great records that are successful come with a lot of setup,” Slater acknowledges, “but at the same time, that setup needs to have the proper tone. So we’re not saying to Top 40, ‘You gotta play this,’ and jamming it in people’s faces. There’s a bit of self-discovery that allows people to draw their own conclusions—and if you’re an educated listener, you’ll get it. This is a record that stands up next to the complete bodies of work that we know and love from the great artists of another era.”

Here are some of the key elements of Capitol’s restrained but comprehensive setup for X&Y:

First single “Speed of Sound” is already a radio hit at the Triple A, Modern Rock, Adult Top 40, Hot AC and Modern AC.

MTV2 gave the Mark Romanek-directed video for “Speed of Sound” an all-day premiere last week, airing it every hour and adding it into Elite 8 rotation. Also last week, MTV put the clip into the Big 10, while VH1 put it in Gung Ho rotation. Yahoo! Music gave the video its online premiere and made Coldplay the artist of the month for June.

Three Coldplay concerts will be broadcast the week of the album’s release: a live concert for MTV’s first-ever Live Leak, premiering 6/5 on MTV and MTV2; a VH1 Storytellers performance, premiering 6/8; and an exclusive AOL Music LIVE! Concert, which will be broadcast online at www.aolmusic.com starting 6/7 and available for the following 10 days. The AOL Radio Network will simultaneously broadcast the audio.

Just prior to Live Leak, MTV News will air a half-hour special featuring an in-depth interview with the band and behind-the-scenes footage. MTV.com is exclusively streaming X&Y in its entirety during the week leading up to the release, and the Live Leak performance will be streamed for listening on MTV.com beginning 6/8.

Cover stories include Blender (which awards the album a five-star review) and Entertainment Weekly.

The band will bring its “Twisted Logic” tour to North America this summer, beginning in 8/5 in Toronto and concluding Sept. 30 in Bristow, VA.