Outburn #34 "Meds", summer'06

8 out of 10
by Emily Zemler

MOODY BRIT ROCK: The reason most Americans may know that rock band Placebo exists is that because on their most upbeat songs played over the conclusion [is not! Every You Every Me is at the beginning! -dee] to the film Cruel Intentions. While that was a great song, there is a lot more to this UK threesome. Their fifth studio album, aptly titled Meds, reveals a softer side. Further begetting anger for sorrow, in a manner they began to do on their previous release, Meds drips with depressed ache. The songs are no less rocking that their early work, but singer Brian Molko sound awfully forlorn as he yelps, "Fall into you / is all I every do / when I hit the bottle / Because I'm afraid to be alone / Tear us in two" on 'Because I want You'. The use of subtle electronic beats adds to the moodiness of their tone, particularly on 'Blind'. Undeniably, the album's best song--and perhaps the band's best song in their career--is 'Song To Say Goodbye' with its slow build- up into soaring synth keyboards and emotion inducing lyrics about hating someone you used to care about. Although Americans love their British imports, Placebo has barely flown below the radar for years while groups like Muse have gotten all the glory. Despite the fact that Meds is a great album, it may not have the hitting power to get Placebo the attention they deserve.