Fender.co.uk "Stefan and Brian’s interview", Dec'06

16 Dec 2006

Buzzing on the success of their latest album Meds, Placebo are backstage at London’s famous Wembley Arena. The band has recently been getting to grips with their brand new G7593 Gretsch® White Falcon™ and G6136TSL Silver Falcon™ guitars. Our very own Nigel Trimmington meets lead singer/guitarist Brian Molko and bassist/guitarist Stefan Olsdal in the massage room and gets the ball rolling… 

Fender: Mine’s a pint. What are you having? 
Brian: Diet Coke. 

Fender: What were the first songs you ever remember writing? 
Stefan: The first song I wrote was called “F— Off And Die.” It was rubbish. 
Brian: The first real ones I guess were “36 Degrees” and “Nancy Boy”. 

Fender: can both of you remember the first records you ever bought? 
Brian: Thriller (the album) by Michael Jackson. 
Stefan: Revenge by Eurythmics. 

Fender: What about the first gig you ever went to? 
Stefan: Neil Young, Luxembourg. 
Brian: Mine was a (French) band called Telephone. 

Fender: Two pronged question… What would you consider to be the best gig you’ve ever been to as a spectator and what was your own personal best that you’ve played? 
Brian: Any Sonic Youth gig I’ve ever been to. It’s transcendental. More recently, I think The Flaming Lips. 
Stefan: Yeah, they’re amazing. 
Brian: It’s just a children’s birthday party on acid. It was just such an elevating, playful, positive event that you could ever go to. You don’t need to take any drugs. That’s what The Flaming Lips are: they have narcotic effects without having to take anything; hence they’re very necessary. 

Fender: Which songs remind you of the best of times and which songs remind you of the worst of times? 
Stefan: I grew up in Sweden, so I was surrounded by Abba. My parents played it every Saturday night! 
Brian: For me, the good times are good 80s disco and the bad times are music like Heart FM or pirate radio that you hear in the back of a taxi cab as you’re trying to get across town before the sun comes up in a f—–g state. It’s noise terrorism; that’s what it is to me. And basically, anything by Sting! 

Fender: Pink Floyd or Led Zeppelin? 
Stefan: Led Zeppelin for me. 
Brian: Now, or in terms of the impact they’ve had? 

Fender: It’s an open question. 
Brian: If I was to listen to one of them now, it would be Led Zeppelin, but in terms of the impact they’ve had, it would probably be Pink Floyd. 

Fender: A question from a fan who works in our office. He wants to know if you have any plans to release a B-sides album… 
Brian: There are no plans right now. 

Fender: …He was moaning about the fact that they are very hard to find and it would be fantastic to have a collection of them on one album. 
Stefan: There are different ways you can do it. You can release all the singles in box sets like Depeche Mode – that would be cool. We haven’t really come to that yet. We did the live DVD and we released all the covers together on the extra disc of Sleeping With Ghosts. Now we’ve done the reissue of the first album with a couple of others. 
Brian: It would be easier just to put all the f—-rs on iTunes. (Laughs). 
Stefan: (Laughs). They’re out there anyway. 
Brian: Just tell him to go on LimeWire™. (Laughs) 

Fender: I’m offering you unlimited resources and raw materials and the chance for Fender or Gretsch® to build you the instrument of your dreams. What would it be? 
Brian: It would have to be something that you would be able to live in, y’know. 
Stefan: Live inside? 
Brian: Live inside. 

Fender: Like a double bass? 
Brian: No, like a house. It would be bigger than a castle. It would be like a loft apartment. That kind of thing. You could shower in it as well. You could sleep in it. It would be something that you could live in, I think. 

Fender: I’ll have a word with the Custom Shop and see what they come up with. 
Stefan: It could have wheels on it, like a car. 

Fender: If you could construct a fantasy band made up of musicians living or dead, with you guys in the band, what would the line-up be? 
Stefan: I don’t think we’d be in the line-up, would we? 
Brian: No. We’d be in the audience. 
Stefan: Yeah. 
Brian: I’ll leave this one to you. 
Stefan: To me? 

Fender: Go on, Stef! 
Stefan: Well, we’ll have Bach on keyboards, we’ll have Hendrix on guitar… 
Brian: Henry Rollins on vocals. 
Stefan: Yes. 
Brian: Thurston Moore. 
Stefan: Yes. 
Brian: And Lee Ronaldo. 
Stefan: Kim Gordon on bass. 
Brian: …and Steve Shelley on drums. Just basically, it has to incorporate Sonic Youth as well. 

Fender: With a few classical misfits on the fringes. 
Brian: Chuck D would have to be in there as well. 

Fender: Last question. Imagine if you will, that somewhere out there is an alternative universe where Brian Molko and Stefan Olsdal never discovered music – what are those guys doing right now? 
Stefan: I’d be in an episode of Star Trek. 
Brian: I’d probably be in drag.
Stefan: I probably be the hairdresser on the Enterprise.