A Night to Remember: Placebo Live at Piece Hall Halifax

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June 25th, 2023, marked a memorable evening at Piece Hall in Halifax. Bathed in glorious weather, the historic venue was packed to the brim with eager fans awaiting a night of phenomenal music. Placebo, the iconic alt-rock band, was set to headline, and the atmosphere was electric with anticipation.

The Opening Act: Friedberg

The evening kicked off with a performance by Friedberg, a four-piece band that might not be a household name yet, but certainly left a lasting impression. From the moment they hit the stage, their infectious alt-rock tunes got the crowd moving and set the tone for the night. Their energetic performance and catchy songs had everyone dancing, proving they were the perfect appetizer for the main act. Friedberg is definitely a band to watch out for in the future.

The Main Event: Placebo

As the sun set, the excitement in the air was palpable. About ten minutes before Placebo was set to take the stage, a message flashed on the big screen requesting fans to refrain from using their phones and cameras. Accompanied by a recorded message from frontman Brian Molko, this plea was a reminder to be present and fully immerse in the live music experience.

When Placebo finally took the stage, launching into “Taste in Men,” the crowd erupted. The band’s presence was magnetic, and the audience’s energy matched it perfectly. As a photographer, I appreciated the unusual but welcome decision to cover the last three songs instead of the first three. By then, the band had warmed up and were fully in their element, providing us with some fantastic shots.

The Setlist

Placebo delivered a powerful set, each song resonating deeply with the audience. Highlights included:

  • “Every You Every Me”: A fan favorite that elevated the concert to new heights.
  • “The Bitter End”: A fitting climax before the encore, leaving the crowd in awe.
  • “Nancy Boy”: Another classic that had everyone singing along.

After a brief interlude, the band returned for an encore, starting with “Infra-red” and concluding with a haunting rendition of Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill (A Deal with God).” This cover was particularly striking, showcasing the band’s ability to reinterpret a classic while making it their own.

The Complete Setlist

  1. Taste in Men
  2. Beautiful James
  3. Scene of the Crime
  4. Happy Birthday in the Sky
  5. Bionic
  6. Surrounded by Spies
  7. Soulmates
  8. Every You Every Me
  9. Sad White Reggae
  10. Try Better Next Time
  11. Too Many Friends
  12. Went Missing
  13. For What It’s Worth
  14. Slave to the Wage
  15. Song to Say Goodbye
  16. The Bitter End
  17. Nancy Boy


  1. Infra-red
  2. Running Up That Hill (A Deal with God)

A Night to Remember

Placebo’s performance at Piece Hall was nothing short of spectacular. The band’s synergy, the setlist, and the intimate connection with the audience made for an unforgettable night. The added touch of asking the crowd to put away their phones truly made a difference, creating a more engaged and present atmosphere.

As the final notes of “Running Up That Hill” echoed through Piece Hall, it was clear that everyone in attendance had witnessed something special. For those of us who have followed Placebo’s journey, this concert was a reaffirmation of their enduring appeal and artistic brilliance. And for those experiencing them live for the first time, it was a perfect introduction to the raw, emotional power that defines Placebo. the evening at Piece Hall wasn’t just a concert; it was a celebration of music, connection, and shared experiences. Placebo left the stage, but the echoes of their performance will resonate with us for a long time. If you ever get the chance to see them live, seize it – you won’t be disappointed.

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