placebos wicked ways
rs nov 99

"How many ends of the world have there been during this tour?" Placebo singer Brian Molko - hair bedraggled, impish grin playing around his accentuated lips - asks drummer Steve Hewitt, who's sitting next to him in an Italian restaurant in Melbourne.

"Three," Hewitt replies in between mouthfuls of spaghetti.

"I'm feeling a little tired," the singer explains, looking deep into his tall glass of vodka (neat) as if it can offer a solution.

A year-long world tour, which has seen his band playing with Hole in Germany, Fun Lovin' Criminals in Greece, Garbage in South Africa, silverchair in Australia and Stabbing Westward in America, will cause that. Especially when mixed in with an enervating cocktail of jet-lag, drink and mind-numbing drugs. Perhaps it's not Molko's fault that he's feeling out of sorts, though. As we speak, a solar eclipse is happening - and the newest world's end is predicted for two hours time.

"That reminds me," Molko boasts. "We did a festival in Belgium with R.E.M. recently, and it was the first end of the world this year - the Nostradumus one, I think. I tell Michael Stipe this, and he's like, 'That's great man, it gives me a new way of introducing the song tonight. So just before 'End of the World' Michael says, "I was talking to Brian from Placebo and he informed me it was the end of the world today. Are you listening, Brian? Did we fucking make it or what?'"

"My heart was glowing. If it is the end of the world, I'm not too worried," Molko chuckles. "It'll mean we don't have to play the gig."

Quiet, Brian. You might soon rue that remark.

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