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Is Coldplay Entering the Protest Music Realm With New ‘Guns’ Song?

The folk-style teaser for the song has a more intriguingly aggrieved tone than the other new music they've previewed.

Coldplay Chris Martin
Scott Roth/Invision/AP

Coldplay may have chosen the double-album format for their upcoming “Everyday Life” because they really do want to show off more than one side of the band after all — including a more contentious and socially conscious side, if the snippet they just released of a new track called “Guns” is any indication.

Only 32 seconds of the number were posted on Instagram and other social media, so it’s hard to say exactly what the thrust of the song will be. But in 2019 you don’t title a song “Guns” without intending to make a statement. Chris Martin sings: “Take it from the playgrounds and take it from the bums / Take it from the hospitals and squeeze it from the slums / All the kids make pistols with their fingers and their thumbs / Advertise a revolution, arm it when it comes / We’re cooking up the zeroes we’ve been doing all the sums / The judgment of this court is we need more guns” — followed by the word “stop” before the teaser abruptly cuts off.

Whatever the ultimate intent, Coldplay thought enough of the song to choose it to lead off the track list for the “Sunset” half of the album, as recently revealed in — in case you’ve forgotten — the classified ads sections of daily newspapers.

The two songs already out from the 16-song collection, “Orphans” and “Arabesque,” hewed close to the contemporary. But “Guns,” at least in the opening snippet revealed Wednesday, has Martin singing against furiously strummed acoustic guitars, closer to vintage Greenwich Village than being on Greenwich time. We may have to wait for the album’s Nov. 22 release date to find out just how triggering a song it is.