Death and All His Friends

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This article is about the song. For the album on which it appears, see Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends.
"Death and All His Friends"
Coldplay - Death And All His Friends.JPG
Song by Coldplay from the album Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends
Released 11 June 2008
Genre Alternative rock
Length 3:34
6:18 (with "The Escapist")
Label EMI/Parlophone/Capitol
Producer Markus Dravs, Brian Eno, Jon Hopkins, Rik Simpson
Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends track listing

"Death and All His Friends" is a song by English alternative rock band Coldplay. It was written by all members of the band for their fourth album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends. The song begins with Chris Martin singing softly to a piano accompaniment before morphing into an uplifting arrangement featuring drums, chiming guitars, and a choir recorded in an art gallery in Barcelona. A hidden song featured on the album, entitled "The Escapist", shares this track with "Death and All His Friends", bringing the length of the track up to over six minutes. A brief 40 second section of "The Escapist" is what begins "Life in Technicolor" making the album cyclical.

A live version of "Death and All His Friends" was featured on the band's 2009 live album, LeftRightLeftRightLeft.[1]

Writing and composition[edit]

The "quiet half" of the song was originally a separate song altogether named "School". "School" was originally intended to be an introduction to another Coldplay song entitled "Rainy Day" that was later featured on the Prospekt's March EP. However, "School" was eventually re-worked into the current state of the "Death and All His Friends".[2]

Singer Chris Martin also revealed in an interview for MTV that the name of the song was supposed to be the theme of the album, he said: "We're aware of all the bad stuff in life, you know , but that doesn't mean you should ever give in to it, you know? So we all sing that bit together really loudly, as kind of a message to ourselves: never giving up and never focusing on the bad stuff too much."[3]

While the band was working on the song, producer Brian Eno was the most obsessed with finishing it, even creating the line "I don't want a cycle of recycled revenge"[2]

The song was recorded in several different places around the world such as Barcelona, London and New York City, taking several months for it to be finalized.[2]

The final line of "The Escapist", the hidden track after "Death and All His Friends" ("And in the end/We lie awake/And we dream of making our escape..."), is very similar to the final line of "The End", by The Beatles ("And in the end/The love you take/Is equal to the love you make...").[citation needed] Another reference on the album to the same Beatles album (Abbey Road) can be seen in the title of the song "Violet Hill", which borrows its rhythm from The Beatles. The song is named for a road which adjoins Abbey Road in London.[4]

Charts[edit]

Chart (2008) Peak
position
Swedish Charts[5] 50
UK Singles Chart[6] 183

Certifications[edit]

Country Certifications
(sales thresholds)
Brazil Platinum[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Kreps, Daniel (2009-05-01). "Coldplay Reward Fans With Free Live LP “LeftRightLeftRightLeft”". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 2010-01-29. 
  2. ^ a b c "Coldplay Promo Interview on Viva La Vida, Part Six (2008)". Youtube.com. Retrieved 28 February 2010. 
  3. ^ "Coldplay Give Track-By-Track Tour Of Viva La Vida, Explain Handclaps, Tack Pianos And The Number 42". MTV.com. Retrieved 28 February 2010. 
  4. ^ Halperin, Shirley (2008-06-12). "Coldplay Talk 'Viva La Vida'". Entertainment Weekly. p. 3. Retrieved 2008-11-01. 
  5. ^ "Discography Coldplay". Swedishcharts.com. Retrieved 28 February 2010. 
  6. ^ "Chart Log UK 1994–2008". Zobbel. Retrieved 2009-09-24. 
  7. ^ "Certificados" (in Brazilian Portuguese). Associação Brasileira de Produtores de Discos. Retrieved 03-01-2012-09-201.