Picks and Pans Review: Parachutes
Album of the week
After becoming the British summer-blockbuster equivalent of "Who Let the Dogs Out," Coldplay's "Yellow," the airy first single off this classic Brit-pop quartet's debut, is making waves on this side of the Atlantic. Their formula? Irrepressibly sweet lyrics ("Look at the stars/ Look how they shine for you/ And everything you do") set to moody hooks à la Radiohead and their Scottish counterparts, Travis. Frontman Chris Martin expertly stands in for Radiohead's Thom Yorke, with a similar close-to-wailing tenor and turbulent lyricism, on "Sparks" and the melancholic "Trouble." But Coldplay, whose members (Martin, drummer Will Champion, bassist Guy Berryman and lead guitarist Jonny Buckland) banded together in 1998 while they attended University College London, does forge a distinctive sound on such tracks as the unrequited-love song "Shiver" (reportedly inspired by pop ingenue Natalie Imbruglia) and the uplifting opener "Don't Panic."
Bottom Line: Up, up and away