The Case Against Coldplay, By John Pareles

1069 words - 4 pages

New York Times has become one of the most read newspapers in America and across the globe. It has won the Pulitzer Prize 98 times since its beginning in 1851 and the opinions of its writers are not taken lightly. It encompasses readers of every race, religion, color, and age, making for a diverse paper that covers almost every subject underneath the sun. From sports and entertainment to business and politics, the reader can rest assured that it holds the latest and most accurate news on whatever subject they are looking for. Because of its world-renowned name and immense popularity, the public holds the New York Times as a valid source and its writers as some of the best in their field. The review “The Case against Coldplay” by Jon Pareles was held with no less esteem. His skillful use of sarcastic humor, impregnable facts, and logical assertions make for an argument that shows much insight into the critical world of music. While his “Case against Coldplay” holds immeasurable vulnerabilities his undeniable use of examples, critique, and humor go far to making this argument an almost success.
Jon Pareles has been declared by Ira Robbins (the co-founder and co-editor of the Trouser Press) in Stephen Ward’s article “The Grey Lady’s Pop Music Man”, “by far the finest working critic in America” and America has had no reason to dispute that statement. His name as a critic is renowned and his opinions are not taken for granted by music artist or consumers. As a well- seasoned critic, Jon Pareles is completely aware of the diverse and well-informed audience he is addressing his argument to, and as such he leaves no angle of the argument unaddressed. He completely annihilates opposition by candidly stating every point that opposes his argument. In the very first paragraph he states that he is neither opposed to lyrics of “self-pity” (281) or of those that show “male-sensitivity” (281). He even goes as far as to assert that Coldplay is beyond a doubt musically gifted. He states that “The band proffers melodies as imposing as Romanesque architecture, solid and symmetrical” (282). The honesty Pareles shows in assessing the grand musical talent of Coldplay keeps Pareles in the borders of the critical and not fanatical, as he does not challenge Coldplay’s claim to fame. Pareles forthright statements go far in asserting his credibility as a writer and his insight as a critic.
Pareles’ article does well in appeasing the reader’s logical mind as it meticulously asserts the pros and cons of Coldplay’s music. He shows much astuteness by asserting the logical sensibility of his argument by using Coldplay’s own lyrics to make his point. He almost becomes relentless as he spits out verse after verse in asserting Coldplay’s addiction to depressing, mournful, and “cheesy” lyrics. As in the instance of the last paragraph where he writes: “He has a lot of pronouncements and advice for all of them: ‘You just want somebody listening to what you say,’ and ‘Every step that...

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