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Coldplay supp. Idlewild - The National Ice Centre, Nottingham

Nottingham is in some ways like Monaco, but I always thought that when they raced around Monaco they did at least shut the roads off first! But when the authorities cast their 'wild card' and with lights flashing tear past their 'competitors', all comers better take cover, as well as their lives in their hands.

So when we did eventually arrive at the National Ice Centre, Lower Parliament Street, Nottingham, Idlewild had already taken to the stage by the time the Atomicduster contingency found their seats, but what a welcome we were offered. This band certainly knew how to perform. 'Rock' sensibilities intact the group cut a swathe through those who had found their way to the auditorium, but something was missing. The glitz and the glamour of a headline band just wasn't there, not that they were in any way lacking in this quarter, it's just that the ticket had confused with a band called 'special guests'. Maybe next time guys.

But who was I kidding, the name at the head of tonight's ticket was one 'Coldplay' and maybe it was only a group such as 'Coldplay' who would carry enough weight to demand a ticket price of £18.50. And were they everything that a polished album such as their latest, 'A Rush Of Blood To The Head', might've expected them to be? With pyrotechnics heading the start of tonight's performance, would certainly have suggested so, but standing at what could have been no more than 15cm tall, from my perspective at least, Coldplay have certainly traveled a long journey since I first saw them at a sweat filled Princess Charlotte in Leicester. The band can perform to the same quality as months in the studio might warrant, but has it really been just 3 short years and 2 albums that have seen them take this giant leap?

I suppose 'polished' is the key word here, maybe even slightly sanitised, as a group you once could've talked to as they proceeded through an audience on the way to the stage, move further and further from reach. I'm not begrudging them their success and have this group made of themselves everything that was expected of them and more, it's just that sometimes I like to eat my chips from the newspaper wrapping.


Nick James


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