Placebo have catered to angsty-teens for 15 years now, and have long perfected the knack of weaving catchy melodies alongside notes of histrionic desperation. With this in mind the way Placebo showcase their sixth album Battle For The Sun might seem methodical - churning guitars and anguished lyricism (would we expect anything less?) – but their music conforms less to set boundaries with a new effort that’s both unique and mirred in the clichés of the band. Although mid-90’s guitar rock inveigles its way in, Battle For The Sun is an album of sharply contrasting moods. Opener 'Kitty Litter' is a big chorus hand-clapping affair, while 'Ashtray Heart' (the moniker Placebo first formed under) down tunes, experimenting with synth-related beats. 'Julien' harks back to 00's Black Market Music but 'Bright Lights' and 'For What It's Worth' favour softer sounds. Less electro than 06’s Meds the biggest change is the self-awareness of Molko’s lyrics, which acknowledge and set up a mix of sentiment and irony. The album gives new perspective to past regrets (check out The Never-Ending Why) and looks forward. Nothing is beyond Placebo who continue to break the mould and Battle For The Sun takes them on an Icarus-like ascent - without crashing and burning!
For fans of: Skunk Anansie, Radiohead and classic 90’s rock!
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