"Clocks" is a song by English alternative rock band Coldplay. It was written by all members of the band for their second album, A Rush of Blood to the Head. Built around a repeating piano riff, the song features cryptic lyrics of contrast and urgency themes. Several remixes of the track exist and its riff has been widely sampled. "Clocks" won Record of the Year at the 2004 Grammy Awards, and, to date, is one of Coldplay's most successful songs.
"Clocks" debuted to critical and commercial success. Most critics complimented on the song's piano line. The song was released in the United Kingdom as the third single from A Rush of Blood to the Head, and reached number nine in the UK Singles Chart. It was released in the United States as the second single and reached number 29 on the Billboard Hot 100.
"Clocks" is built around a repeating piano riff, and features a minimalist soundscape of drums and bass. Martin applied an ostinato and a descending scale on the piano chord progression, which switches from major to minor chords. The music of "Clocks" are also provided by synthesizers and a sparse string arrangement.
The song's lyrical themes include contrast, contradictions and urgency. Chris Martin sings of being in the state of "helplessness ... in a dysfunctional relationship he doesn't necessarily want to escape". The lyrics are cryptic; the ending lines of the second verse emphasize contradicting emotion: "Come out upon my seas/Cursed missed opportunities/Am I a part of the cure/Or am I part of the disease?". The song's title also "metaphorically alludes" to its lyrics, "pushing one to wonder about the world’s obsession with time while connecting it to the theory: make the best of it when we’re here, present and alive".
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