Playing in the Shadows is the third album by British recording artistExample, released on 4 September 2011 through Ministry of Sound. Example confirmed that much like the previous album, there would be no collaborations, besides that of producers (including frequent collaborator Skream). During an interview, Example said the album remains dance oriented, although he would make a gradual move into electronic and dubstep genres.
In an interview with Lowe he revealed that his third album would be released in September 2011 entitled Playing in the Shadows. Example described the album as a darker record than previous album Won't Go Quietly ("dark, epic beast"). He also said production on the record will come from Michael Woods, Skream, Nero, Faithless, Brookes Brothers, Dirty South and hopefully Chase & Status, as well as writing with English songwriter and producer Guy Chambers. Funkagenda will be producing the intro track also (as per their respective Twitter feeds). In a discussion on Twitter, Example also revealed the final track to be completed on his album would be produced by Feed Me.
"Changed the Way You Kiss Me" was the album's lead single. It is produced by Michael Woods and was released on 5 June 2011. On 24 March 2011 "Changed the Way You Kiss Me" debuted on BBC Radio 1 as Zane Lowe's Hottest Record in the World. The video was released on Example's website on 24 April 2011. The single debuted at number 1 on the UK Singles Chart. "Changed the Way You Kiss Me" is featured in Adidas' launch event for new Predator Football boots.
"Stay Awake" was the second single from the album and was produced by Nero. The single debuted on 1 July 2011 on Annie Mac's BBC Radio 1 show and was released on 28 August 2011. The video premiered on 18 July 2011. The single debuted at number 1 on the UK Singles Chart.
"Natural Disaster" was released on 16 October. It debuted at number 37 on the UK charts. The song is a collaboration with Dutch DJ Laidback Luke. The single is billed to Laidback Luke vs. Example.
"Midnight Run" was the fourth single from the album, which was released on 4 December 2011 and was produced by Feed Me. The song debuted at number 30 on the UK official charts. However the single topped the UK Indie chart with 1 and achieved 5 on the UK dance chart.
"Shot Yourself in the Foot Again" was released as a free download in January 2011. The track is produced by Skream and has gained over 13 million views on YouTube. It features on Example's album as an iTunes bonus track. Although it was a free download, it managed to chart at 82 in the UK.
The iTunes bonus track "Plastic Smile" (with Felguk) is featured as the B-side track of Felguk's "Jack It" EP and on the 2012 video game SSX. The track has not made any major chart appearances, although it has charted at No. 39 in the UK Indie Chart.