British alternative rock favourites Placebo have released their first new single in five years in the form of the bold new single “Beautiful James”.

For over twenty-five years and 13 million album sales, Placebo have been a band not shy of shining a light on aspects of the human conditions viewed less favourable by some and this tender yet defiant new single continues this theme.

Against a backdrop of splintering global relations, unchallenged online abuse and widespread fear among the narrow-minded of what they cannot understand, “Beautiful James” brings with it a message of defiance that seeks to normalize and celebrate non-heteronormative relationships in song.

Created through the glaze of insomnia, the band turned their creative process on its head in order to bring “Beautiful James” to life. It meant approaching their work together in a new way, which began first with photographic imagery and a song title that evoked a certain feeling – long before any music was written. The resulting song is as powerful as it is tender – a resolutely defiant and ultimately necessary piece of art.

Brian Molko comments further about the release of “Beautiful James”: “If the song serves to irritate the squares and the uptight, so gleefully be it. But it remains imperative for me that each listener discovers their own personal story within it – I really don’t want to tell you how to feel.”

Artwork for ‘Beautiful James’ by Placebo

I have an unhealthy obsession with bad horror movies, the song Wanted Dead Or Alive and crap British game shows. I do this not because of the sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll lifestyle it affords me but more because it gives me an excuse to listen to bands that sound like hippos mating.