100 Best Songs of the 2010s – #48: “A Sky Full of Stars” by Coldplay

The song at #48 on my list of 100 Best Songs of the 2010s is “A Sky Full of Stars” by Coldplay. They’re one of my favorite bands, and this is their second song on this list (the other being “Adventure of a Lifetime”, which ranks at #63). The beautiful, uplifting song was co-written and co-produced by the late Avicii, which accounts for its sweeping and lush piano and synth-driven EDM and progressive house sound. It was released in May 2014 as the third single from their sixth album Ghost Stories, a very good album that received mostly positive reviews, other than from the aptly-named Pitchfork, which tends to skewer everything that doesn’t ‘break new ground’. “A Sky Full of Stars” also received mainly positive reviews, though Josh Modell of The A.V. Club dismissed it as a “blatantly pandering, album-interrupting, mood-fucking-up [track] which is destined to be a hit and also instantly dated” – to which I say ‘fuck him and the horse he rode in on!’

“A Sky Full of Stars” is a jubilant celebration by someone for another person for whom their love shines brighter than the stars. A bit sappy, yes, but so darn exuberant and pretty that I can’t help but love it! The happy video for the song was directed by Mat Whitecross and filmed in Australia, on King Street in the inner Sydney suburb of Newtown. It shows lead singer Chris Martin and his fellow bandmates, each dressed as one-man-bands, walking the street amid throngs of people as they perform the song. The song itself was obviously dubbed over the video, but it still makes for an exhilarating experience, highlighted by the band entering a crowd of adoring fans at the end, accompanied by bursts of paper stars being shot into the air.