Death and All His Friends

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"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
Released11 June 2008 (2008-06-11)
GenreArt rock
  • 3:34
  • 6:18 (with "The Escapist")
Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends track listing
  1. "Life in Technicolor"
  2. "Cemeteries of London"
  3. "Lost!"
  4. "42"
  5. "Lovers in Japan / Reign of Love"
  6. "Yes"
  7. "Viva la Vida"
  8. "Violet Hill"
  9. "Strawberry Swing"
  10. "Death and All His Friends"

"Death and All His Friends" is a song by British 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]


Chart (2008) Peak
Swedish Charts[4] 50
UK Singles Chart[5] 183


Country Certifications
(sales thresholds)
Brazil Platinum[6]


  1. ^ Kreps, Daniel (1 May 2009). "Coldplay Reward Fans With Free Live LP "LeftRightLeftRightLeft"". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 January 2010.
  2. ^ a b c "Coldplay Promo Interview on Viva La Vida, Part Six (2008)". YouTube. Retrieved 28 February 2010.
  3. ^ "Coldplay Give Track-By-Track Tour Of Viva La Vida, Explain Handclaps, Tack Pianos And The Number 42". MTV. Retrieved 28 February 2010.
  4. ^ "Discography Coldplay". Hung Medien. Retrieved 28 February 2010.
  5. ^ "Chart Log UK 1994–2008". Zobbel. Archived from the original on 7 May 2012. Retrieved 24 September 2009.
  6. ^ "Certificados" (in Portuguese). Associação Brasileira de Produtores de Discos. Retrieved 6 November 2015.