Coldplay Mixing Next Studio Album

Coldplay is putting the finishing touches on its fourth studio album, an as-yet-untitled project set for an early summer release via Capitol. A summer tour of North America and Europe will follow.

Coldplay is putting the finishing touches on its fourth studio album, an as-yet-untitled project set for an early summer release via Capitol. A summer tour of North America and Europe will follow.

The band began working on the record in November of 2006 at their studio in North London, taking a break in March of last year to tour South American for the first time. Producers are Brian Eno, Markus Dravs and the band.

"We're just about finished," band manager Dave Holmes tells Billboard.com. "They're in the final mixing. They'll start mastering, and away we go." Typically light on hyperbole, Holmes is enthusiastic about the new project. "I think it's their best album," he says. "They've really delivered. It's a fantastic record. They've really put the work in."

Holmes says the album "definitely takes them in some different directions. I'm not a music critic, but it's certainly a progression, with some really great songwriting."

The much-publicized upheaval at EMI, including restructuring, high-profile departures and unsubstantiated rumors that the band might depart its longtime label home, had little impact on the recording or the setup of its release. "When all that was going on we were over here in [in London] in the studio, so we kind of steered clear of all that," Holmes says. "We've got a great plan in place."

Touring plans are still in the works, but Holmes says the band is working on something "special," with several ideas in development. The band is working for the first time with respected lighting director/set designer Paul Normandale on ideas, "and if we can pull this off it's going to be quite different. We're going to try something a little different in the arena space."

Holmes adds, "The guys are really eager to get back on the road. They're really looking forward to touring and getting back out there."