First, there was "Midnight"; now there's "Magic."
After surprise-releasing a so-so new song last week that suggested frontman Chris Martin had been bro-ing down with Bon Iver's Justin Vernon, Coldplay dropped another fresh tune on the Internet late Sunday, one that has Pop & Hiss considerably more excited about what appears to be the English band's new direction.
"Magic" is billed as the official lead single from "Ghost Stories," Coldplay's sixth studio disc, due May 19. The album will follow up "Mylo Xyloto," which came out in 2011.
Like "Midnight," "Magic" is decidedly lower-key than earlier Coldplay songs, with Martin's delicate falsetto floating over a muted drum-machine beat. But where the first track never provides much beyond a vibe, this one offers up a sumptuous vocal melody -- and a surprisingly soulful one at that -- as Martin insists, "I don't want anybody else but you."
Next week Coldplay is slated to headline the first night of Apple's iTunes Festival at the South by Southwest music conference in Austin, Texas. Pop & Hiss will be there, so check back for a report on the band's performance, and listen to "Magic" below.