Candlelight Tribute to Coldplay - Manchester Cathedral, Manchester, 1/4/2022

  by Shirley Procter

published: 12 / 4 / 2022

Candlelight Tribute to Coldplay - Manchester Cathedral, Manchester, 1/4/2022

Shirley Procter enjoys a candlelight tribute to Coldplay at Manchester Cathedral.


I’m sitting in the very beautiful gothic building that is Manchester Cathedral, waiting for a ‘Candlelight Tribute to Coldplay’ to start, on a chilly 1st April. This show features Tim Abel on piano, and Matthew Glossop on violin, with Pete Drummond on percussion. The gig lasts 65 minutes, and features some of my favourite Coldplay songs; sadl, neither ‘Amsterdam’ or ‘Shiver’ feature, but many other of my favourites are listed! The last time I was here was for a christening, so this event should be pretty different. The cathedral is crowded, with hundreds and hundreds of candles illuminating everywhere (I guess that’s why it’s called ‘Candlelight Tribute to Coldplay’!), in every corner of the building and round all the columns. First up is ‘Yellow’, with the melody being carried by the violin. With my eyes closed, I can imagine the band playing; the piano and drums are so close to Coldplay, and the violin adds an extra dimension to the song. Matt says, “Hello and welcome”, and then introduces the the rest of the band and tells us how Chris Martin named the song. He tells us some more about their first album, ‘Parachutes’, and says they are next playing ‘Trouble’ and ‘Don’t Panic’, explaining the story around these two songs being triggered by Chris Martin’s behaviour in the band. Coldplay now have strict band rules! ‘Trouble’ sounds wonderful on violin; it’s such an expressive instrument. Next up is ‘Don’t Panic’ in which again the expressiveness of the violin really makes this song. Matt tells us they’re moving on to ‘A Rush of Blood to the Head’, and plays firs of all ‘Politik’, followed by ‘In My Place’. Wow! ‘Politik’ sounds amazing - you wouldn’t think three instruments could produce such a volume of sound! Then the swift change to the quieter elements of the song makes for real sound clashes. ‘In My Place’ opens with a much less harsh sound than ‘Politik’. The piano echoes Coldplay perfectly, as does the drums, with the violin picking out Chris Martin’s voice so expressively. Next up is ‘Clocks’, a song inspired by Muse, followed by ‘The Scientist’, both from their third album ‘X and Y’. The range of the violin far surpasses that of Chris Martin, giving ‘Clocks’ a completely different feel - the piano and drums are the same, but the violin adds an extra depth to the song, with a much bigger range than Martin’s voice. ‘The Scientist; starts up, again with the piano matching Coldplay’s, with the violin taking up the melody. Part way through, the piano picks up the melody, with the violin playing discordant notes. Again, the clash works really well. After an intermission, they moving to the fourth album, ‘Viva La Vida (or Death and all his friends)’, and then on to ‘Milo Xyloto’. ‘Viva la Vida’ is first, with the melody alternating between the violin and piano. The violin is playing the “woah-ooh” parts, but NO ONE is singing!!! (Well, except me, behind my mask!) . That was excellent! Next up is ‘Paradise’, a song that reminds me of two young men who took part in VSO exchange programme, and lived with us for three months, just as the album came out. We played it so often, and Ayaz in particular loved ‘Paradise’. This was a beautiful version! Moving on to ‘Ghost Stories’ - I love this album!- they play ‘Sky Full of Stars’, a track inspired by Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’. Again, the violin picks up the melody, with the piano picking up the guitar chords. The light inside the cathedral is fading now, and the candlelight is becoming more and more visible. Next up is ‘My Universe’ from the latest Coldplay album,’Music of the Spheres’ and a collaboration with BTS, before they finish with ‘Fix You’ - Matt tells the story of being at the filming of the video for “Fix You’ at Bolton football stadium - I was also there’ I’m singing along to ‘My Universe’, loving how the violin plays the melody. Last up is ‘Fix You’, a song Chris Martin wrote for his (then) wife Gwyneth Paltrow, after her father died. The lyrics to this song are utterly beautiful. Somehow, Matt manages to play two strings at a time on his violin, providing harmonies together with the melody - astounding! The audience call, clap, cheer and whistle their appreciation, and give them a standing ovation! This was excellent - a fantastic Christmas present from my daughter Suzannah, so thank you, Zannah!

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Candlelight Tribute to Coldplay - Manchester Cathedral, Manchester, 1/4/2022

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