Sleeping with Ghosts

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Sleeping with Ghosts
Studio album by Placebo
Released 24 March 2003
Recorded Late 2002 – early 2003 at Townhouse Studios and Sarm West Studios
Genre Alternative rock
Length 46:32
Label Virgin, Hut
Producer Jim Abbiss
Placebo chronology
Black Market Music
(2000)
Sleeping with Ghosts
(2003)
Covers
(2003)
Singles from Sleeping with Ghosts
  1. "The Bitter End"
    Released: 10 March 2003
  2. "This Picture"
    Released: 16 June 2003
  3. "Special Needs"
    Released: 15 September 2003
  4. "English Summer Rain"
    Released: 23 February 2004

Sleeping with Ghosts is the fourth studio album by English alternative rock band Placebo, recorded from late 2002 to early 2003 and released on 1 April 2003 through record labels Virgin and Hut.

Background[edit]

Frontman Brian Molko, who is known to be a fan of the band Sonic Youth,[1] references lyrics from their album Sister on "Plasticine" ("Beauty lies inside the eye of another youthful dream" directly references "Beauty lies in the eyes of another's dream" from Sonic Youth's "Beauty Lies in the Eye").

The album has several songs based on a theme of relationships, such as relationships that end badly ("The Bitter End"), power struggles in relationships ("Special Needs") or the idea that some are meant to be eternal soulmates (the title track). Brian Molko told Kerrang! magazine: "I'm looking back to what's happened in my past emotional decade, trying to understand it. Trying to exorcise the ghosts and the demons of relationships past. It's the old cliché of it being therapeutic but it does work for me in that way."[2]

Another interview has Molko explaining:

The album title's about carrying the ghosts of your relationships with you, to the point where sometimes a smell or a situation or an item of clothing they bought brings a person back. For me it's about the relationship that you have with your memories. They inhabit your dreams sometimes. There can be a lot in the future that's gonna remind you of the ghost of relationships past. So I see the album as a collection of short stories about a handful of relationships. Most of them mine. In a way writing the songs helps me to get a lot of the nasty feelings off my chest and put them in a box, and therefore have a bit more of an objective discourse with those emotions because you've done something positive with them, you've rid yourself of them.[3]

Release[edit]

The album was released with the Copy Control protection system in some regions.

A Special Edition version of the album was released on 22 September 2003 worldwide, featuring a diverse selection of cover versions that the band had recorded in previous years. This was re-released as a download-only album in 2007 under the name Covers.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Source Rating
Metacritic 64[4]
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 3/5 stars[5]
The A.V. Club favourable[6]
Blender 2/5 stars[7]
Filter 85%[8]
Mojo 2/5 stars[9]
Pitchfork 6.4/10[10]
PopMatters mixed[11]
Q 4/5 stars[12]
Rolling Stone 3/5 stars[4]
Uncut 4/10[13]

Sleeping with Ghosts was generally well received by critics.

Pitchfork wrote, "No peaks, no gorges, just a steady oscillation between adequate and inspired. Sleeping with Ghosts is a remarkably level collection of guitar pop, simultaneously less glammy and less pungent than Placebo's earlier stuff."[10] Mojo wrote, "There's some terrific and accessible stuff here [...] but the result is still an album that retreads old Placebo themes."[9]

Q magazine called it "spikily brilliant".[12]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Bulletproof Cupid"   2:22
2. "English Summer Rain"   4:01
3. "This Picture"   3:34
4. "Sleeping with Ghosts"   4:38
5. "The Bitter End"   3:10
6. "Something Rotten"   5:28
7. "Plasticine"   3:26
8. "Special Needs"   5:15
9. "I'll Be Yours"   3:32
10. "Second Sight"   2:49
11. "Protect Me from What I Want"   3:15
12. "Centrefolds"   5:02

Charts and certifications[edit]

Certifications
Country Certification
Europe (IFPI) Platinum[32]
France (SNEP) 2× Platinum[33]
Germany (BVMI) Platinum[34]
Greece (IFPI Greece) Gold[22]
United Kingdom (BPI) Gold[35]

Personnel[edit]

Placebo
  • Brian Molko – vocals, guitar, keyboard, saxophone on "Something Rotten", drums on "English Summer Rain"
  • Steve Hewitt – drums, percussion
  • Stefan Olsdal – bass guitar, guitar, keyboards, piano, backing vocals
Additional personnel
  • Simon Breed – harmonica on "Protect Me From What I Want"
Technical personnel
  • Jim Abbissproduction
  • Jean Baptiste Mondino – sleeve art direction and photography
  • Jim Barny – mixing at Mayfair Studios, recording at Townhouse Studios and Sarm West Studios
  • Andy Davies – engineering assistance at Sarm West Studios
  • Bill Lloyd – additional recording, engineering
  • Sean Magee – mastering at Abbey Road Studios
  • Fergus Peterkin – engineering assistance at Mayfair Studios
  • Danny Porter – engineering assistance at Townhouse Studios
  • See Studio – sleeve design and art direction
  • Tom Stanley – engineering assistance at Townhouse Studios

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Boy Can't Help It". Guitarist. August 1997. Archived from the original on 8 May 2007. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  2. ^ "Natural Born Chillers". Kerrang!. March 2003. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  3. ^ "Placebo – Guest Program Rage". abc.net.au. 9 August 2003. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "Sleeping with Ghosts - Placebo". Metacritic. Retrieved 2012-03-04. 
  5. ^ MacKenzie, Wilson. "Sleeping with Ghosts – Placebo : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards : AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  6. ^ Murray, Noel (15 April 2003). "Sleeping with Ghosts | Music | MusicalWork Review | The A.V. Club". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  7. ^ Blender: 123. May 2003. 
  8. ^ Filter (5): 123. 
  9. ^ a b Mojo: 110. April 2003. 
  10. ^ a b Idov, Michael (20 April 2003). "Placebo: Sleeping with Ghosts | Album Reviews |". Pitchfork. Archived from the original on 26 April 2003. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  11. ^ Antrobus, David (14 May 2003). "Placebo: Sleeping with Ghosts | PopMatters". PopMatters. Retrieved 3 July 2013. 
  12. ^ a b Q: 111. April 2003. 
  13. ^ Uncut: 90. May 2003. 
  14. ^ "Australian-charts.com – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Australian-charts.com. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  15. ^ "Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts – Austriancharts.at". Austriancharts.at. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  16. ^ "ultratop.be – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Ultratop. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  17. ^ "ultratop.be – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Ultratop. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  18. ^ "Danishcharts.com – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Danishcharts.com. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  19. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Dutchcharts.nl. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  20. ^ "Finnishcharts.com – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Finnishcharts.com. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  21. ^ "Lescharts.com – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Lescharts.com. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  22. ^ a b "Ελληνικό Chart". IFPI. Archived from the original on 4 February 2004. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  23. ^ "GFK Chart-Track". Chart-track.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-04-12. 
  24. ^ Steffen Hung. "Placebo - Sleeping with Ghosts". italiancharts.com. Retrieved 2012-04-12. 
  25. ^ Steffen Hung. "Placebo - Sleeping with Ghosts". charts.org.nz. Retrieved 2012-04-12. 
  26. ^ Steffen Hung. "Placebo - Sleeping with Ghosts". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 2012-04-12. 
  27. ^ "Oficjalna lista sprzedaży :: OLIS - Official Retail Sales Chart". OLIS. 2003-03-30. Retrieved 2012-04-12. 
  28. ^ Steffen Hung. "Placebo - Sleeping with Ghosts". portuguesecharts.com. Retrieved 2012-04-12. 
  29. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts". Swedishcharts.com. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  30. ^ "Placebo – Sleeping with Ghosts – Hitparade.ch". Hitparade.ch (in Swedish). Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  31. ^ "Placebo | Artist | Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  32. ^ "IFPI Platinum Europe Awards – 2004". IFPI. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  33. ^ "Snepmusique.com, le site du Snep". Snepmusique.com (in French). Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  34. ^ "Bundesverband Musikindustrie: Gold-/Platin-datenbank". Bundesverband Musikindustrie (in German). Retrieved 4 July 2013. 
  35. ^ "Certified Awards". BPI. Retrieved 4 July 2013. 

External links[edit]