British rockers Placebo have fired back at critics who hurled insults at them following a recent performance at the OpenAir St Gallen festival in Switzerland on June 30th.

The band, who were set to perform alongside the likes of The Chainsmokers and Queens of the Stone Age, took to Instagram to address the controversy, explaining that they were plagued by “unrepairable technical issues” during the gig, which led to a truncated set.

Frontman Brian Molko didn’t mince words in his post, calling out the “unimaginative and entitled” insults the band had received. He also noted the in-fighting among Placebo’s fanbase since the show, urging them to gain some perspective on the situation.

Molko wrote, “Shortly into the set, Stefan [Olsdal] began to have technical issues until finally his guitar system ceased to function completely. So he could no long play any songs where he plays guitar. Every effort to remedy the problem by our world-class crew was taken but to no avail.”

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Rather than walking off stage and not returning, the band made the decision to continue playing the songs where Olsdal plays bass. They even made several announcements in German to explain the situation to the audience.

Molko noted that Placebo uses no recordings on stage, with everything being 100 per cent live. He suggested that those who continue to be enraged by the unavoidable situation should consider watching bands that rely heavily on recorded music.

Molko wrote, “This is a polite way of saying – get a life.”

He also reminded fans that attending Placebo’s shows is an individual choice, not a requirement.

“Please feel free to exercise this choice in the future and please stop insulting our loyal fan base in the virtual world,” he added.

The post concluded with Molko thanking fans and highlighting the fact that most aspects of life are out of our control, including the electricity that powers live performances.

Interestingly, this isn’t the only controversy Placebo has found themselves embroiled in recently. The band was initially scheduled to headline the Pandemonium Rocks Festival but quietly pulled out of the event amid a flurry of line-up changes and venue shifts.

Pandemonium Rocks, which took place in April 2024, faced numerous challenges leading up to the event. The festival was reduced from a two-stage event to a single stage, with several acts, including Deep Purple, Dead Kennedys, and Gang of Four, withdrawing from the lineup. Blondie and Alice Cooper remained as the key headliners.

The festival faced criticism from fans who were disappointed by the lineup changes and sought refunds. Despite the challenges, Pandemonium Rocks managed to proceed, albeit in a scaled-down format compared to its original vision.

This isn’t the first time a band has faced technical difficulties during a festival set, and it certainly won’t be the last. However, Placebo’s no-nonsense response to their critics is a refreshing reminder that even the most seasoned musicians are at the mercy of equipment malfunctions from time to time.

So, the next time you’re at a gig and something goes awry, take a deep breath and try to enjoy the moment for what it is. After all, as Molko so eloquently put it, “Most aspects of our lives, in general, are actually out of our own control.”

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