While most of Placebo’s albums are generally racked with intense angst, anger, and pain, their latest offering is surprisingly laced with hope, positivity, and incorruptible determination. Battle for the Sun begins with the album title track which sounds like an anthem for the once defeated. This kicks off the album’s more unified thematic atmosphere which frontman Brian Molko says “is about choosing life, about choosing to live, about stepping out of the darkness and into the light. Not necessarily turning your back on the darkness because it's there, it's essential; it's a part of who you are, but more about the choice of standing in the sunlight instead.” Ashtray heart follows suit with an upbeat chorus in Spanish. The song’s title was the initial the name of the Molko and Olsdal duo which, by the addition of drummer Schultzberg was changed to Placebo, and thus marking their serious foray into the music industry.
The album features new Drummer Steve Forrest, and distinctively gives the band a fresher sound with its new percussion base. In Battle for the Sun, it would seem as if Placebo came back sharing lessons from all the twisted tales they’ve told before. There are unquestionable gems here like Speak in Tongues and Bright Lights with lyrics one wouldn’t expect from the band that gave us Nancy Boy and Pure Morning. Another noteworthy track is Happy You’re Gone which brings back the soul of Without You I’m Nothing. The album sounds like the band’s reincarnation of sorts with a different kind of vitality but is in essence as potent as Placebo’s first hits.