Placebo Taking 'Bit of a Breather' Before Hitting Studio in 2012
Placebo Taking 'Bit of a Breather' Before Hitting Studio in 2012

With the new live DVD "We Come in Pieces" serving as a placeholder, British alt rockers Placebo is taking what bassist Stefan Olsdal calls "a bit of a breather" before setting to work in earnest on a follow-up to 2009's "Battle For the Sun."

"That was one of the longest tours we ever did, supporting that album," Olsdal tells Billboard.com. "It lasted the better part of two years. We're still recovering from that, really." Nevertheless, Olsdal says he and singer-guitarist Brian Molko are "continually writing" and should be ready when the trio -- which also includes drummer Steve Forrest -- decides to hit the studio in 2012.

"I'm in touch with Brian," Olsdal says. "He'll bring in a track or parts of a track, or I do, or we just kind of jam something up in the studio. The shape and sound of the next album will be decided when we get back together. I suppose once we came off the road it was kind of hard to plug in a distorted guitar again, because we'd done that every night for the best part of two years. When we came back home it was nice to hear nice, clean, acoustic sounds, so maybe we'll still feel that way when we start to (record)."

Olsdal says there are a few tracks Placebo started working on during "Battle For the Sun" that are still in "embryonic stages," although he adds that much of the album's leftover material wound up on a reissued version of the album in 2010. "We pretty much cleaned out the cupboard," he says, "so we'll be starting fresh, really."

Meanwhile, Olsdal and his mates are happy to have "We Come in Pieces" out -- particularly for U.S. fans who were disappointed when Placebo canceled its planned tour in 2009. "That's really the reason we made the DVD, for all those fans who didn't get to see us," Olsdal notes. "It seems like such a long time ago, I can't remember the exact reason why we (canceled). It's just one of those things; sometimes you just can't get to every part of the world on each tour."

Besides capturing Placebo's final tour performance at London's Brixton Academy, "We Came in Pieces" also features a short film called "Trigger Happy Hands" as well as a documentary, "Coming Up For Air," directed by Charlie Targett-Adams. "We just kind of let him have pretty much access all areas," Olsdal recalls. "Some bits in there are still uncomfortable for us to view, but a the same time it shows what life is like on the road. It's not all fun and games; there's good days and there's times when the weight of the world crashes on you, when you're flying 13 hours and get right off the plane and have a show that night, and you can't put on the show you expect from yourself and that you want to give the people. It shows that side of touring life as well."