X & Y

Reviewed by: Nick Southall
Reviewed on: 2005-06-07

Posted 06/07/2005 - 01:38:54 PM by mtwill:
 Another really interesting and informative review from the best writer on Stylus. Editors, more like this please. Thanks Nick.
Posted 06/07/2005 - 01:53:23 PM by JimFitz:
 Good contribution, mtwill. :)
Posted 06/07/2005 - 02:48:10 PM by manis5:
 i don't understand this.... the new coldplay album gets the same score as the new sleater kinney album?
Posted 06/07/2005 - 05:25:03 PM by snowface:
 and it's impossible for coldplay and sleater kinney to get the same score because-
Posted 06/07/2005 - 07:49:50 PM by mbloodyv:
 The new S-K is a sludgy pile of boredom and near disappointment while the new Coldplay is a sparkly pile of boredom and near disappointment.
Posted 06/08/2005 - 09:33:16 AM by Woootooowoo:
 Ah'm not sure if I get the 'this could be on radiohead's third album' remarks. Having said that, I have only heard the album once. It doesn't do much for me.
Posted 06/08/2005 - 03:52:06 PM by manis5:
 why wouldn't the sleater kinney get the same score as cold play? idk...maybe its cuz the new sleater kinney album is amazing while the new cold play album sucks, just like all their previouse ones...
Posted 06/09/2005 - 07:24:51 AM by Liarbythefire:
 I'm rather surprised Coldplay got a higher rating than S-K...there seems to be some variety on S-K's while Coldplay's album seems like they're re-writing "Clocks" and making it an entire album.
Posted 06/09/2005 - 07:43:41 AM by NickSouthall:
 I'd wager that this "issue" has something to do with the fact that different writers wrote each review and have different opinions.
Posted 06/09/2005 - 03:19:24 PM by techn0p0pe:
 Sorry but this grade is way too high, lets face it this album is unimaginative, stylisticaly stale, overproduced, way overhyped and falls flat on its face if this had not been a coldplay album it would not have even gotten a review it is so dismal, i wouold regrade as a c- at best.
Posted 06/09/2005 - 07:07:31 PM by kupfer21:
 high aspirations, no inspirations. well done, nick...but i think you might be giving these guys just a little too much credit...lets face it, we expected more. was that foolish?
Posted 06/10/2005 - 03:55:10 AM by NickSouthall:
 All the negativity and hatred directed at this record is ignoring one thing - several parts of this record are very enjoyable to listen to. It is a very well-made record. Hollow, yes. The sound of achieving because you can rather than because you have to, yes. A targeted stab at world domination, yes. But a really, genuinely BAD record? No. Go and listen to The Others.
Posted 06/10/2005 - 09:59:38 AM by techn0p0pe:
 Nick, you gave that piece of crap Oasis album better than it deserved also, i generally like you reviews, but not these two, i listened to the album several times and i wanted to like it but so mundane was the music i forgot i was listening to it both times, to me that is bad music, it does not grab you.
Posted 06/10/2005 - 01:39:14 PM by lovezero:
 what is clear here is ,besides all above said, this is not a good album. (i won't diss the cover:))
Posted 06/10/2005 - 04:33:46 PM by mtwill:
 the controversey in these comments over the s-k and coldplay ratings goes to the point i made in my earlier comment (and have made repeatedly in comments on this site) about the lack of editorial control, which effectively renders the opinion of this site meaningless other than to the extent you are really familar with a particular reviewer's idiosyncratic taste. a lot of reviewer's on this site tend to indulge these idiosyncrasies, or go for the needlessly contrarian take, so its impossible to have a sense of stylus as an internet publication such that you can really rely on the reviews at all. i read stylus bc i'm a music junkie and i read everything i can about the records i'm interested in, but this is exactly why stylus is last on my favorites list- behind pitchfork, cmg, pop matters, even behind tmt and prefix. Say what you want about pitchfork, but the scores are remarkably consistent and fair, and its very rare that that a genuinely great record gets missed or a genuinely and one gets oversold. As to this specific disparity, the problem is clearly with the s-k rating. Look, s-k took a major risk with the woods, and its a bold record. some people are going to love it, others are going to disagree with the choices. but its an important record, its powerful music, it exudes commitment and integrity in a way that is just impossible not to admire. i mean, people can disagree and argue heatedly over it (a hallmark of a truly inteersting record), but B- is just not a credible review for a record this rich and this challenging. i think the overwhelming critical consensus on this point is evidence of that (its being discussed today by matt iglesias on his tpmcafe blog, for chrissake). i doubt the woods will be my most played cd of the year, but it is one of only three records this year that has made me step back and say "wow" (the others are spoon and bloc party). As for the coldplay, nick is dead-on as usual with the rating. this is a record that contains a lot of beauty and good spirit. when i first heard that tune "fix it" and the song crescendoes and the gang vox come in singing "tears stream down your face when you lose something you can't replace" - well, maybe it is a tad cheesay and heavy-handed, but i thought of my recent divorce and i'd be lying if i didnt say i had a bit of a lump in my throat. that said, fix you and several other very nice songs do tend to get kind of lost in what is overall the rather humdrum vibe of the record. interestingly, the first few times i heard "speed of sound" at bars or on the radio, i thought it sounded like a great song, but when i hear it on the album it just blends into the sameness. So, a nice, safe record with an undeniably good spirit, but ultimately kind of boring -- sounds like a B- to me. Again, great review.
Posted 06/12/2005 - 04:58:39 PM by Woootooowoo:
 I listened to the album today. It bored me to tears. It's a fair review though, as someone just pointed out. I can't imagine that the SK album is much better, from what i've heard, despite the hype. nahy.
Posted 07/07/2005 - 01:50:50 AM by bassman08:
 One comment about Coldplay. I haven't heard the record. I have no idea weather or not it's worthy of a fucking B-. But I do know one thing: I find Coldplay's sinles to be incredibly boring. That certainly CAN'T mean that the albums are much better. Isn't a single supposed to be the best, most recognizable song on the album? Case in point. I have heard the new single, "Speed of Sound", or "Speed of Light", or whatever the hell it's called, numerous times. I am certain that I have heard t numerous times because I have seen commericals for the song, album, and inevitable tour. I have heard the DJ on the radio say, "OK, now here's the new Coldplay song." I have conciously and knowingly clicked on the 30-second sample of the song on iTunes and listened to that a few times. But you know what's funny? I don't even know the melody of the song. I couldn't tell you how it goes if you put a gun to my head. Sure, I could probably tell you what I THINK it sounds like, and could give yo a probably reasonable description using words. But hum the melody? I wouldn't be able to do it. Now like I said, I could tell you what, from previous experiances of Coldplay songs, it MAY HYPOTHETICALLY sound like. And that's the thing. All the songs that I have heard by Coldplay sound exactly the same to me. I could describe their elements: slow, driving rock with a lot of piano. A bit of guitar (but nothing special). Very ballady. Chris Martin croning over the top of it in a sort-of-pretentious-sounding-(but no more than Thom Yorke)-yet-extremely-soothing-British-accent. This description would probably accuratly depict every one of the Coldplay singles that has been released as of yet. "The Scientist"? Check. "Clocks" (which I actually happen to like a little bit)? Yep. "Yellow"? More guitar than the previous two, but still in the same vane. Maybe I'm missing some singles. But it really doesn't matter, they're all pretty much the same. And I STILL can't, for the life of me, remember the chorus to "Speed of Sound" after listening to it not 2 minutes ago on iTunes.
Posted 10/01/2005 - 11:22:34 AM by BeingaBunny:
 Southall gave the latest The Flaming Lips album a C (it should be around a B, B-), and gives the new coldplay gets a B- (should be a C, C-)? I bet Southall's favorite song is "Fix You," and oh my god I just read that it actually is. Well, that says it all right there: Southall just likes bad songs.