OriginDundee, Scotland Years active1994–present RoleMusician ChildrenCody Molko
GenresAlternative rock NameBrian Molko Music groupPlacebo (Since 1994)
Born10 December 1972 (age 43)
Brussels, Belgium (1972-12-10) Occupation(s)Musician, singer-songwriter, actor InstrumentsVocals, guitar, bass, keyboards, piano, harmonica, saxophone, percussion, drums LabelsEMI, Virgin, Hut, Caroline, PIAS (current) AlbumsLoud Like Love, Battle for the Sun, Placebo, Without You I'm Nothing, Sleeping with Ghosts Similar PeopleStefan Olsdal, Steve Forrest, Steve Hewitt, Timo Maas, Asia Argento
Placebo brian molko french interview with translation 2009
Brian Molko (born 10 December 1972) is a Scottish-Belgian musician, songwriter, lead vocalist, and guitarist of the band Placebo. He is known in particular for his distinctive nasal, high-pitched vocals, androgynous appearance, and unique guitar style and tuning.
Brian molko receives honorary fellowship at goldsmiths
Molko was born in Brussels, Belgium to an American father of French-Italian heritage and a Scottish Catholic mother. Molko has only one older brother, 10 years his senior, named Stuart Molko. Molko's family moved frequently during his childhood, growing up in Dundee, Liberia, Lebanon, and Belgium, where they eventually settled for quite a long time in the village of Longeau, just near to the border with Luxembourg, where the young Brian spent a lot of his childhood. Brian Molko has referred to a period spent in his mother's home town of Dundee, Scotland, as "where I grew up".
While Molko was brought up in a strict household that disapproved of artistic expression (his father wanted him to become a banker), he rebelled by assuming an androgynous image, wearing nail polish, lipstick, and eyeliner, and listening to punk music. Molko initially attended the European School of Luxembourg but had to leave due to excessive bullying; he later attended the American International School of Luxembourg (AISL) and went on to study drama at Goldsmiths College in London.
Molko and Stefan Olsdal had both attended AISL (though they were never friends); when Molko moved to London, he ran into Olsdal at South Kensington tube station and invited him to one of his gigs in a club, which he played with Steve Hewitt in a group called Ashtray Heart.
Along with Hewitt and Olsdal, he had a role in the 1998 film Velvet Goldmine, for which Placebo performed the T. Rex song "20th Century Boy". He played Malcolms, a singer of the fictional glam rock band, The Flaming Creatures, who resembled the early Alice Cooper band.
During Placebo's live performances, Brian has played a number of instruments: guitar, bass guitar, keyboards, harmonica and saxophone.
Molko has been open about his use of recreational drugs; in a 1997 interview with New York Doll, he admitted at one point that heroin was "probably the only drug on this planet I haven't tried". However, he later admitted to using heroin as well. The band holds that the drug references within their music reflect the nature of current times, and the removal of such references would deteriorate the meaningfulness of their work. In a 2010 interview Molko said that the band had stopped using drugs.
In October 2005 Molko announced that his then-partner, photographer Helena Berg had given birth to a boy, Cody. In June 2009, he stated in an interview that he was a "single father." Molko is openly bisexual.
In December 2012, Molko received an Honorary Fellowship from Goldsmiths College, University of London.
He has performed, as a guest vocalist and with other artists on Placebo's records, on tracks by:
The Cure – "If Only Tonight We Could Sleep" (live)
Justin Warfield – "Spite & Malice"
Losers – "Summertime Rolls"
Asia Argento – "Je T'aime, Moi Non Plus" (Serge Gainsbourg and Jane Birkin cover)
Alison Mosshart from The Kills – "Meds"
Michael Stipe of R.E.M. – "Broken Promise"
Faultline & Francoise Hardy – "Requiem for a Jerk" (Serge Gainsbourg cover)
Timo Maas – "Pictures", "Like Siamese", "First Day", "College 84"
Kristeen Young – "No Other God" on X
Dream City Film Club – "Some", "Billy Chic"
Jane Birkin – "Smile"
T. Rex – "20th Century Boy" (live cover, feat. David Bowie), "Without You I'm Nothing"
AC Acoustics – "Crush"
Alpinestars – "Carbon Kid"
Trash Palace – "The Metric System"
Hotel Persona – "Modern Kids"
Indochine – "Pink Water 3"
Prova Symphonica conducted by Michel Bisceglia – "Across the Universe" (The Beatles cover), "Ne me quitte pas" (Jacques Brel cover, both live)
Westbam – "Sick"
Fiona Brice – "West End Girls" (Pet Shop Boys cover)
Trash Palace – "Can't Get You Out of My Head" (Kylie Minogue cover, live)
He also wrote the English lyrics to "Pink Water 3", a song by Indochine from the album Alice & June, released in 2005. Molko is friends with David Bowie, with whom he sang on Placebo's "Without You I'm Nothing" and the "20th Century Boy" cover live.
Molko uses a variety of guitars. In the Sleeping With Ghosts era, he used Gibson SGs ("The Bitter End", "Every You Every Me", "Plasticine", "Black-Eyed", "Without You I'm Nothing", "Special K", "Bulletproof Cupid", "Soulmates/Sleeping With Ghosts", "Special Needs", "This Picture"), Fender Jaguars ("Allergic", "Nancy Boy", "Bionic", "Centrefolds"), a Fender Thinline Telecaster ("Taste in Men"), a Fender Jazzmaster ("Pure Morning"), and a Fender Bass VI ("Slave to the Wage"). For amplification he used a Marshall 6100LM.
Through the Meds tour, he used Gretsch Duo Jets ("Infra-Red", "Because I Want You", "Song to Say Goodbye", "One of a Kind", "The Bitter End", "Running Up that Hill", "Special K"), Gibson SGs ("Special Needs", "Every You Every Me", "Black-Eyed", "Without You I'm Nothing"), a Fender Jaguar ("Drag", "Nancy Boy", "I Know"), a Fender Thinline Telecaster ("Twenty Years", "Taste in Men"), and a Gibson Chet Atkins SST ("Meds"). His amplifier was a Fender Twin Reverb.
In the Battle for the Sun tour, he still used Gretsch Duo Jets ("Devil in the Details", "Come Undone", "Follow The Cops Back Home"), a Gibson SG ("Bright Lights"), Fender Cyclone ("Ashtray Heart", "The Never-Ending Why", "Breathe Underwater", "Teenage Angst"), a Gibson Les Paul ("For What It's Worth", "Speak in Tongues", "Julien", "Meds"), a Fender Telecaster Thinline ("Kitty Litter"), and a Fender Toronado ("Battle for the Sun"). His pedalboard consisted of a Boss TU-2 chromatic tuner, Electro Harmonix Holy Grail reverb, MXR Phase 90 phaser, two Electro Harmonix Hot Tubes distortion units, Boss DD-3 delay, MXR Distortion + booster, MG Monovibe chorus/vibrato, Electro Harmonix No. 1 Echo delay and a Radial Loopbone effect chain switcher.
In 2010, he signed an endorsement contract to use Orange amps.
Velvet Goldmine (1998) – Malcolm of The Flaming Creatures
Sue's Last Ride (2001) – executive producer
Never Mind the Buzzcocks
Episode #2.06 (1997)
Episode #8.01 (2001)
Episode #9.06 (2001)
Rockwave Festival (Greece, Athens) (13 July 1999)
Glastonbury Festival (1997)
BRIT Awards (1999)
Late Night with Conan O'Brien
Episode dated 27 March 1999
Placebo Guest Programme rage (1999)
Terremoto Festival (Hamburg) (2000)
Rockwave Festival (Greece, Athens) (3 July 2001)
Episode #5.11 (2001)
The Kerrang! Awards (2002)
Rive droite – rive gauche
Episode dated 21 March 2003
V Graham Norton
Episode #4.21 (2003)
Tout le monde en parle
Episode dated 3 May 2003
Episode dated 14 February 2004
Episode dated 26 June 2003
Placebo: Soulmates Never Die – Live in Paris 2003
Le grand journal de Canal+
Rockwave Festival (Greece, Athens) (22 June 2004)
Episode dated 13 September 2004
Episode dated 13 October 2004
Placebo: Androgyny (2005)
Live 8 (2005)
Terra Vibe Festival (Greece, Athens) (5 September 2006)
Rock am Ring (2006)
Rock im Park (2006)
Isle of Wight Festival (2006)
Greenfield Festival (2006)
The Friday Night Project (2006)
Soccer A.M. (2006)
Nova Rock Festival (15 June 2006)
Roskilde Festival (Denmark, Roskilde) (2 July 2006)
Open'er Festival (6 July 2006)
T in the Park (8 July 2006)
Oxegen (9 July 2006)
Vieilles Charrues Festival (21 July 2006)
Festival Internacional de Benicassim (23 July 2006)
Rock-A-Field (25 July 2006)
Leeds Festival (25 August 2006)
Rock'n Coke (3 September 2006)
Moni Lazariston Festival (Greece, Thessaloniki) (13 June 2007)
Lyccabetus (Greece, Athens) (14 June 2007)
Siesta Festival (29 May 2009)
Rock Am Ring (2009)
Rock Im Park (2009)
Rockwave Festival (Greece, Athens) (27 June 2009)
Rock Werchter Belgium, July 2009
Open'er Festival (5 July 2009)
Rock for People (8 July 2009)
Sziget (15 August 2009)
Reading Festival (28 August 2009)
Leeds Festival (30 August 2009)
Soundwave Festival (20, 21, 26, 27 February and 1 March 2010)
Exit Festival (9 July 2010)
Sonisphere Festival (31 July 2010)
Pukkelpop Festival (19 August 2010)
Two Days A Week Festival (4 September 2010)
Earth Theatre w/ Aviv Geffen (Greece, Thessaloniki) (10 September 2010)
Rockwave Festival (Greece, Athens) (11 September 2010)
Huxleys Neue Welt (Germany, Berlin) (9 August 2011)
Mercedes-Benz (Germany, Stuttgart) (11 August 2011)
Imitation is the highest form of flattery - but clones kind of get it wrong because we are promoting individuality and being proud of being yourself I love being a freak It's great! Dresses - I find - are impractical in social situations - but I enjoy wearing them a great deal on stage