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Ghost Stories

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Stepping back from the blazing energy of 2008’s Viv a lavida or death and All his friends and 2011’s Mylo Xyoto, Coldplay’s sixth album is an instropective, bittersweet meditation on love and loss that sounds every bit as spectral as its name suggest. The Band’s gift for soaring melodies is evident throughoutout ghost stories-particularly on the magnetic first single “Magic”. But aside from the EDM-Infused throb of “A Sky Full of Stars”, the album offers little of the triumphant grandeur that defines the band’s stadium-filling oeuvre. Instead, Christ Martin’s heart-rending falsetto floats along in haze of synth-washed ambience (as on the entrancing Kid A-influenced “Midnight”) or sparsely accompanied by acoustic instruments ( “ Ocean”, “O”). When the final track fades out, offering a wordless, melancholy hymn from a distant choir, Ghost Stories demonstrates the expressive power of understand.

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