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Placebo announce new track ‘Surrounded By Spies’

The British rock duo confirmed on social media that the new track is out next Tuesday

By Hollie Geraghty

Placebo in a blue filtered press shot
The British duo continue to tease what’s to come on their forthcoming eighth album. (Photo: Placebo/ Twitter).

Placebo have announced a new single ‘Surrounded By Spies’ is arriving next week.

The British rock duo confirmed on social media that the new song is out on Tuesday (November 9), after releasing ‘Beautiful James’ in September, their first single in five years.

The two-piece – Brian Molko and Stefan Olsdal – have teased what’s to come on their forthcoming eighth album, the follow up to 2013 release ‘Loud Like Love’.

Speaking to BBC 6 Music and reported by NME in September, frontman Brian Molko spoke about the delays the new record has faced as a result of the pandemic. 

“We were basically ready to go on tour: the album was already finished and we spent 2019 in our home studio working on it,” he said. “We’d sort of decided already that ‘Beautiful James’ would be the first single, so we had a lot of confidence. We had a lot of get-up-and-go, and then everything that happened, happened, so everything is sort of delayed by about two years now.

“I know it was frustrating for the fans. It was certainly very frustrating for us as well, the interminable wait to put out new music, but at least it was there. We knew we had it.”

He also spoke about the writing process and his self-diagnosed “boredom problem”. 

“Stefan [Olsdal] has often said that he’s never met anyone with a lower boredom threshold than myself – and that really influences and informs the way that we work.”

He added: “This time I came to Stefan with images first. I wanted to do everything backwards, so I said: ‘Let’s choose an album cover before we write any music, here’s a list of song titles which I’ve been writing over the past five years, let’s start with these song titles rather than starting with the music – let’s do everything that we do backwards. Let’s do this whole album without a drummer.’”

He shared that the duo ended up using two drummers, and that the “backwards way of working” informed the overall process.

“I needed to do it backwards at the beginning to feel like I was doing something different.”

Molko also shared that latest single ‘Beautiful James’ was born out of a “major period of insomnia. 

“This was a particularly bad couple of weeks,” he said, “but in my stupor, I don’t know where from, I was getting melodies, and phrases were coming into my head.”