Thursday, June 04, 2009

Battle for the Sun

Song: Battle for the Sun
Artist: Placebo
Album: Battle for the Sun

Never been a huge fan of Placebo (aside from "Pure Morning") but am digging this song and their new record.

Battle for the Sun is the title of the sixth studio album by the alternative rock band Placebo.

Production and recording

David Bottrill produced the record, after having previously worked with Tool, Muse, Silverchair, Remy Zero and dEUS. James Brown, who worked on the band's 2006 album Meds, engineered. It will also be the first album with the new drummer, Steve Forrest.

On Battle for the Sun, the band use new instruments, such as trumpets and saxophones. The material has influences from such bands as PJ Harvey and My Bloody Valentine. It is said to be a heavier-sounding record compared to its predecessor. Frontman Brian Molko said on the concept of the album:

We've made a record about choosing life, about choosing to live, about stepping out of the darkness and into the light. Not necessarily turning your back on the darkness because it's there, it's essential; it's a part of who you are, but more about the choice of standing in the sunlight instead.

Molko has also stated that Battle for the Sun is the band's first album with a discernible thematic unity. Molko states that his favourite track from the album is "Speak in Tongues".


The album will be released as a download, CD, limited edition CD + DVD, LP, and a limited edition box set.

The box set will feature the full album plus two extra studio tracks, a CD to access exclusive live recorded tracks, a DVD of the December 2008 Angkor Wat performance, a DVD of exclusive studio footage and a 32 page photo book featuring exclusive artwork, photos and handwritten lyrics as well as the full album on 2 x Heavy Vinyl LP.

The title track debuted on Zane Lowe's BBC Radio 1 show March 17, 2009. After the world première, it became available for free download on the band's official site.

At an exclusive secret gig held on March 17, 2009, in London, the band played a number of new songs from the album, including the tracks "Ashtray Heart", "Julien", "Kitty Litter", and "Devil in the Details". They also covered Nik Kershaw’s "Wouldn't It Be Good".

The album was made available for streaming to members of the bands' website between May 29th and May 31st, 2009.


Eddie Fleisher of Alternative Press gave the album 4 and a half out of 5 stars. They praise that Battle for the Sun "takes the best elements of their sound and focuses it into a cohesive listening experience- there's no filler to be found". The review also notes how Steve Forrest as drummer gives the band a much-needed kick and how Brian Molko's lyrics are given more clarity. Fleisher also says the album contains two of the best Placebo songs ever, "Happy You're Gone" and "Kings of Medicine".

Track listing

  1. "Kitty Litter" - 3:47
  2. "Ashtray Heart" - 3:32
  3. "Battle for the Sun" - 5:33
  4. "For What It's Worth" - 2:47
  5. "Devil in the Details" - 4:28
  6. "Bright Lights" - 3:24
  7. "Speak in Tongues" - 4:06
  8. "The Never-Ending Why" - 3:23
  9. "Julien" - 4:43
  10. "Happy You're Gone" - 3:51
  11. "Breathe Underwater" - 3:44
  12. "Come Undone" - 4:37
  13. "Kings of Medicine" - 4:14
  14. "In a Funk" [iTunes pre-order & Japanese Bonus Track]

Placebo are an alternative rock band formed in London in 1994, currently consisting of Brian Molko, Stefan Olsdal and Steve Forrest. To date, they have released five studio albums, six EPs and twenty-seven singles. Their sixth album Battle for the Sun is scheduled to be released in June 2009. The band have gained a considerable amount of international recognition, which includes the non-English speaking world. They have sold over one million albums in the UK and over ten million worldwide.

Thus far, Placebo are best known for hit songs such as: "Nancy Boy", "Pure Morning", "You Don't Care About Us", "Every You Every Me", "The Bitter End", "Twenty Years", "Black-eyed", "Because I Want You", "Infra-Red", "Meds" and a cover of the Kate Bush song "Running Up That Hill".

Placebo's style has varied greatly. Their first album featured a raw sound and a fairly minimalistic instrumental lineup, but proceeding albums have had a slower, more melancholy, tone and they started experimenting with synthesizers and other, less traditional, modes of sound production (particularly after Black Market Music).

The band have gained some measure of notoriety for the sexualities of its members (Olsdal is homosexual and Molko is bisexual) as well as for their excessive lifestyles and Molko's androgynous image, which are often referred to in their songs (see Lyrics). In recent years, however, the band have become less sexually charged.


Battle for The Sun

For What it's Worth

Pure Morning - Top of the Pops

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