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Placebo

Due to their penchant for androgynous attire/makeup and raw, punky guitar riffs, Placebo have been described by some as a glam version of Nirvana. The multinational band was formed by singer/guitarist Brian Molko (part Scottish and American descent, but raised in England) and Swedish bassist Stefan Olsdal. Both members had previously attended the same school in Luxembourg, but they didn't cross paths properly until 1994 in London, England. Briefly called Ashtray Heart and influenced by the likes of Sonic Youth, the Pixies, the Smashing Pumpkins, and the aforementioned Nirvana, they began filling the vacant drum spot with percussionists like Robert Schultzberg and Steve Hewitt (the latter being the group's only member of English origin). Although Molko and Olsdal preferred Hewitt as their main man (it was this lineup that recorded several early demos), Hewitt opted to return to his other band at the time, Breed. With Schultzberg back on board instead, Placebo signed a recording contract with Caroline Records and released a self-titled debut in 1996. The album was a surprise hit in the U.K., where singles like "Nancy Boy" and "Teenage Angst" became Top 40 hits. Meanwhile, the bandmates themselves became the toast of the British music weeklies and supported their debut by opening for such outfits as the reunited Sex Pistols, U2, and Weezer.

Despite the group's early success, Schultzberg wasn't seeing eye to eye with the other bandmembers, who by this point were able to convince Hewitt to rejoin the lineup, prompting Schultzberg's exit from the band in September 1996. One of Hewitt's first performances with Placebo upon returning proved to be a big one, as David Bowie -- a fan of the band, not to mention an influence on its sound -- personally invited the trio to play his 50th birthday bash at New York's Madison Square Garden in 1997. The following year, Placebo switched over to the major-label division of Caroline, Virgin Records, and issued Without You I'm Nothing in November. The album was another large seller in England and initially appeared to be the group's breakthrough in the U.S., where MTV embraced the album's leadoff single, "Pure Morning." Subsequent singles failed to match the success of that first song, but Without You I'm Nothing remained popular in England, where it eventually went platinum. Around the same time, Placebo recorded a cover of T. Rex's "20th Century Boy" for Velvet Goldmine, a movie in which the trio also appeared.

The relationship between Placebo and Bowie continued to blossom. Bowie made a special on-stage appearance with the band during a tour stop in New York, and both parties united for a re-recording of the title track from Without You I'm Nothing, which was issued as a single in 1999. Placebo's third release, Black Market Music, added hip-hop and disco elements to the band's tense rock sound. The album was released in Europe in 2000, followed several months later by a re-sequenced American version whose track list featured several additions, including the aforementioned Bowie version of "Without You I'm Nothing" and the band's cover of Depeche Mode's "I Feel You." The recording spawned additional U.K. hits such as "Taste in Men" and "Slave to the Wage."

In spring 2003, Placebo showcased a harder edge with the release of their fourth album, Sleeping with Ghosts. The album cracked the Top Ten in the U.K. and sold 1.4 million copies worldwide. Australian tour dates with Elbow and U.K. shows with Har Mar Superstar followed in 2004. Placebo's singles collection, Once More with Feeling: Singles 1996-2004, was released before the year's end. The 19-song compilation included their biggest U.K. hits and the new track "Twenty Years." Frenchman Dimitri Tikovoi (Goldfrapp, the Cranes), who had mixed selected songs on Once More with Feeling, also signed on to produce Placebo's fifth effort, 2006's Meds. One year later, after landing a spot on the Projekt Revolution tour alongside Linkin Park and My Chemical Romance, Virgin released the Extended Play '07 EP as a simple introduction for new fans to the band's past decade of music.

Steven Hewitt departed Placebo in the fall of 2007, and the band left its longtime home of EMI/Virgin one year later. With new drummer Steve Forrest now on board, the band recorded Battle for the Sun and released it during the summer of 2009. A box set of the band's work for EMI, The Hut Recordings, was released the same day, and an extensive tour kept the guys busy for another year. For fans who couldn't make the shows, Placebo also issued a live mini-album, Live at La Cigale, whose songs were taken from a 2006 performance in Paris. The band returned in 2009 with its sixth studio album, Battle for the Sun, which was produced by Grammy winner David Bottrill (dEUS, Silverchair, Muse). In 2010 Molko and Olsdal announced they had been working on new material, which culminated in the release of the mini-album B3 EP two years later. In 2013 Placebo delivered their seventh studio album, the Adam Noble-produced Loud Like Love. ~ Greg Prato, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Running Up That Hill (Radio Single)

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Track List: Too Many Friends (Single)

Comments

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<3
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ugh. Their cover Running Up That Hill is atrocious
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Loveeeeeeeee e them
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Love them
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You will be kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However if you don't post this you will be injured(but you won't die) in two days. Post this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes. When you're done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters.
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rmayorga3106
10years in love with this magic❤
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Love 'em:)
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I wish they had a I freakin' love it button. This whole album was great.
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Yup I would ....
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love these guys.
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love running up that hill always in my head
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bonnit's just mad because he can't find any barbershop quartets on his daggum' pandoora
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God i love the song running up that hill
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@bobonnit
Oh look! Some classic rock dinosaur that doesn't like anything else and whose objective opinion is so awash in cobwebs and old f*rts he couldn't give a worthwhile opinion if his shriveled a** depended on it. How cute!
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I love this band. Their music has helped me to become the amazing person I am today. The only problem I can see anybody having with their music though is Brian's voice and maybe some of the lyrics.... Nancy Boy and Pure Morning are pretty risqué for someone who isn't used to "strange" themes in music. But they are probably one of the most unnoticed and unappreciate d too..... If only they hit it big over in the U.S because their good everywhere else really....
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pliesb
Instrumental l y they remind me of Rush
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This band sucks beyond belief
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Placebo is an excellent band from England. Brian Molko is a terrific singer, although his voice is a bit of an acquired taste, and his songwriting skills are unquestionab l e . His lyrics are always beautiful and poetic, and sometimes shocking.
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I love youuuuuuuu
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parisinflame s 8 2 5
bad a** muthaohukin song. Chingona la rola
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This band is a glam version of Nirvana ? Two types of music that totally suck.
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Maynard needs to calm down I mean all his songs are amazing but just keep one band!
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What i mean is giving owner soul to the devil
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I dis song its kind of like the song " get out alive " by tdg
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So gorgeous. Music's good too.
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shybaby19912 9
I love yu placebo.
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Brian looks like a queen, but he sings like a king.
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cynderthedra g o n 8
please tell me there still alive ;W;
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cynderthedra g o n 8
thier voice r like rock n roll angel *0*
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grimtheparro t
Better than the original
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rste134
"none of you can make the ....." Harder faster .,After..... . . . s**t.!! F**k yes
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Pure poetry...
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kcmiller42
Running up that hill - Special thanks to Kate Bush!! Good cover, but give credit where credit is due!!
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Did the lead singer finally get the operation or does ''it'' still go around pretending to be a tranny?
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Their sound is so raw and powerfuld :D
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the song pure morning gets me hard
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snickers1795
I wish they toured the US more often! Placebo is a dynamic band who deserves more recognition in the states. Damn us yankees for our lack of real musical taste! Instead, I'm stuck with Justin f**kin Bieber.
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I have loved Placebo since my wife introduced me to Without You I'm Nothing feat David Bowie. about 7 years ago, and I have to say, I never get tired of them. They are so different, I love the playlist I have based on Deadsy, Poe, and Placebo... Very interesting Mix. :)
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Just discovered this band via Pandora after keying in She wants revenge as a station. I'm an ancient post punk/ alt 80's guy and love the sound of this band ...Can't believe I've never heard of them before except the Kate Bush cover a while back...Aweso m e sound; unique but also somewhat reminenscent of the old post punk bands (Joy Division/Cur e )
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they are not an emo band believe me ive been listing to this band for years they are not who ever told you that is dumb and dnt really know the band
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These guys always remind me of a troubled friend. I'm glad I remember him.
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My gawd this song is awful!
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I love placebo. SO many memories for me and my first love... damn they are amazing.
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Placebo rawk!
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music is usually pretty cool, but i don't like the guys voice.
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how could anyone have a problem with Placebo?
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i've listened to Placebo and i love them, but someone told me they were an emo band, is that true? idk i don't really consider it an "emo band"
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j.ieronimo22 6 I know musical differences vary but what bands do you like for a barometer of your tastes? In my opinion you dont know what your talking about, this band has more complete albums of gold that anyone I can think of.
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Interesting indeed.
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I'm a straight 28 year old man whom listens to bands such as Opeth Cannibal Corpse Tool and I think Placebo is a great band so f**k all you hater a**holes
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