Budweiser’s Made In America Preview: Coldplay’s Ten Finest B-Sides and Rarities

Featured Image courtesy of Andrea Labate

Coldplay will be closing out this weekend’s Made In America Festival on the Ben Franklin Parkway, and will surely be playing all the hits that have defined their two-decade career. While more obvious songs such as “Yellow” and “Viva la Vida” will get a warm welcome from Sunday night’s crowd, there are other cuts buried deep at the bottom of Coldplay’s catalog that are just as good as the hits that turned them into international stars.

10.) “1.36” (“The Scientist” B-side, 2002)

The B-side to one of Coldplay’s least-rocking singles lies one of the most overdriven Coldplay songs ever recorded. “1.36” features Coldplay cutting loose a bit in an obvious nod to Bends-era Radiohead, and even features a guest spot by English comedian (and close friend of the band) Simon Pegg.

9.) “Brothers and Sisters” (Brothers and Sisters EP, 1999)

Back when Coldplay was playing pubs and colleges, “Brothers and Sisters” was the highlight of their set. Love and togetherness are the song’s central themes, something that hasn’t really been lost in Coldplay’s music regardless of how their crowd size has changed.

8.) “Moving To Mars” (“Every Teardrop is a Waterfall” B-side, 2011)

“Moving to Mars” continues the dystopian narrative of 2011’s Mylo Xyloto, but instead of sounding like the colorful pop hits that marked the album, this track has more in common with Coldplay’s pre-2005 work. Lyrics highlighting the end of the Earth’s civilization are underscored by a minimal piano ballad that lies closer on the spectrum to early Coldplay favorites like “Amsterdam” than it does to Mylo Xyloto cuts like “Paradise”.

7.) Ghost Story (Ghost Stories Target exclusive edition, 2014)

It’s a mystery why “Ghost Story” never officially made it onto Ghost Stories. The song is a bit more brash in comparison to the ambient tunes found on the standard Ghost Stories tracklist, but “Ghost Story” could have easily found stood it’s ground on an album that, with only 9 songs, certainly had the room for it. 

6.) “How You See The World No. 2” (Help: A Day In The Life, 2005)

Coldplay (and especially Chris Martin) have never been ones to shy away from political activism. “How You See The World No. 2” is a reworked version of the band’s song “How You See The World”, which was a B-side to X&Y single “The Hardest Part”. The re-recorded song was donated to War Child’s Help: A Day In The Life charity album in an effort to raise funds for war-torn countries across the globe. If there was ever such thing as an angry, bitter Coldplay song, this would be it.

5.) “Lhuna (featuring Kylie Minologue)” (Project (RED), 2008)

An outlier from the Viva la Vida… sessions, “Lhuna” was initially meant to be released with the rest of the album but was never finished in time. Instead, the band donated the song to Project (RED)’s Red Wire service for 2008’s World AIDS Day. The song marks Coldplay’s first collaboration with pop royalty (a list that has since expanded) and is an absolutely haunting listen. 

4.) “For You” (“Shiver” B-side, 2000)

Much like how “1.36” was a direct contrast to it’s A-side “The Scientist”, “For You” is the sonic opposite of it’s A-side “Shiver”. considering that “Shiver” was the most energetic track off of 2000’s Parachutes, “For You” seems like a bleak choice of song for it to be paired with. Though the poignant piano line may suggest otherwise, “For You” is an excellent display of Coldplay’s signature optimism, which is especially obvious during the last verse: “Every one of us is scared/Every one of us is hurt/Every one of us has hope”.

3.) “Ladder To The Sun” (unreleased)

“Ladder To The Sun” was tested live at a few shows in support of 2003’s A Rush of Blood to the Head but never made it onto any official releases. It still remains to be seen if there’s even a studio recording of the song, but diehard Coldplay fans have been able to scope out a few high quality radio recordings of the track being tested live. “Ladder To The Sun” shows the band beginning to step away from the sounds that marked Parachutes and A Rush of Blood… into the more pop-inspired sounds that can be found on their work from X&Y forward. 

2.) “Glass of Water” (Prospekt’s March EP, 2008)

“Glass of Water” was a serious contender for inclusion on 2008’s Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends that ultimately didn’t make it onto the album, but the track managed to find it’s way onto Prospekt’s March. the EP features six originals that were recorded during the Viva sessions, but “Glass of Water” is the obvious standout. The song features an explosive chorus in a rare 7/4 time signature, and was so popular amongst fans that it ended up making its way onto the Viva tour setlist as well as the tour’s official live album, Leftrightleftrightleft.

1.) “See You Soon” (The Blue Room EP, 1999)

“See You Soon” is hands down one of the best songs in Coldplay’s entire catalog. The song is little more than Chris Martin and his guitar, but the final result is a vulnerable and gorgeous fan favorite. It’s no wonder that even 17 years after it’s recording, fans are still requesting the song live. 

What are your favorite Coldplay deep cuts? 

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