Depeche Mode - Spirit

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And we have our regular once-every-four-years new album and tour:

Depeche Mode, one of modern music’s most influential artists, announced today at a special event in Milan that they will be embarking on a world tour in May 2017 to support their new studio album, Spirit, due to be released in early 2017. Following the release of the album, the Global Spirit Tour will provide lifelong fans and new fans alike with an opportunity to see the band’s ground-breaking and intensely emotive shows.

The first leg of the Global Spirit Tour will see Dave Gahan, Martin Gore and Andy Fletcher play to more than 1.5 million fans in 32 cities in 21 countries across Europe. The tour starts at Stockholm’s Friends Arena on May 5th 2017, and the band will play fan-favourite venues including Paris’ Stade de France, San Siro in Milan, and Berlin’s Olympiastadion. Additional tour stops include new stadiums for the band such as London Stadium on June 3rd 2017, Otkritie Arena in Moscow, and Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen, Germany. The European leg ends on July 23rd with a final stadium show in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

American dates to follow etc. etc. London date goes on sale this Friday.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 11 October 2016 13:40 (six months ago) Permalink

I didn't watch the event, but apparently a reporter in the pool asked if Alan would be rejoining the band.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Tuesday, 11 October 2016 13:58 (six months ago) Permalink

oh don't play Manchester/ The North then, see if i care.

piscesx, Tuesday, 11 October 2016 14:36 (six months ago) Permalink

James Ford producing!?

piscesx, Tuesday, 11 October 2016 15:32 (six months ago) Permalink

Spirit, eh? Undoubtedly looking forward to hearing how the album sounds from a production standpoint, and probably looking more forward to what Dave will bring to the table songwriting-wise than what Martin will. Dave's songs have often been legit highlights of recent Mode albums. Weirdly, I'm beginning to find that the songs that Martin is choosing to sing often seem to be some of the worst on recent Mode albums, too.

What I'm not expecting, based on that title, is any kind of radical change-up lyrically... I guess we know the drill by now: 'angel', 'devil', 'wings', 'world', 'knees', 'sin (or sinner)', 'broken (or break)', 'lost', references to Biblical names.

...and I guess there'll be at least one shuffle on this LP, too, where they attempt to remake 'Personal Jesus' again.

pen pineapple apple pen (Turrican), Tuesday, 11 October 2016 16:53 (six months ago) Permalink

If Dave comes up with anything of the same quality as 'Nothing's Imposssible' or 'Secret To The End' or some of the better moments of Hourglass, I'll be one happy camper.

pen pineapple apple pen (Turrican), Tuesday, 11 October 2016 19:28 (six months ago) Permalink

I didn't watch the event, but apparently a reporter in the pool asked if Alan would be rejoining the band.

― Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever),

Is that all you can say about that? No answer from the band?

van smack, Thursday, 13 October 2016 00:09 (six months ago) Permalink

three months pass...

so new single next week? Pretty dodgy cover art for this campaign it seems

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Thursday, 2 February 2017 13:34 (two months ago) Permalink

..by Corbijn, right? It's ok I guess. New single out tomorrow.

willem, Thursday, 2 February 2017 13:39 (two months ago) Permalink

consistent then xp

nashwan, Thursday, 2 February 2017 13:39 (two months ago) Permalink

you're right - Ultra was probably their last decent visuals/cover art. The Corbijn stuff is boring and repetitive

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Thursday, 2 February 2017 13:53 (two months ago) Permalink

I even thought the sleeve to Ultra was terrible at first.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Thursday, 2 February 2017 20:39 (two months ago) Permalink

And we got single

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 2 February 2017 23:15 (two months ago) Permalink

Hmm. Yet another waltz-time kinda track.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Thursday, 2 February 2017 23:46 (two months ago) Permalink

Pointed lyrics, though.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 2 February 2017 23:49 (two months ago) Permalink

I like it. On one hand, the lyrics seems very pointed indeed, very timely. On the other hand, they could probably fit over the ending credits to any of The Hunger Games movies.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 2 February 2017 23:53 (two months ago) Permalink

This is better than "Heaven", at least. Not my favorite, not their worst.

The 6/8 obsession is getting a little comical by this point.

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 3 February 2017 15:56 (two months ago) Permalink

The thing is, after three Ben Hillier-produced records, I was secretly hoping for something different in the production department. Granted, it's only one song but it's making me think that it's not going to be too far off the last couple of releases production-wise.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Friday, 3 February 2017 22:55 (two months ago) Permalink

I dunno, I guess I'm just hoping they'll make a record as layered as Ultra again.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Friday, 3 February 2017 22:56 (two months ago) Permalink

I listened to Ultra on my commute in today. I had taken gigantic pieces of that album for granted (for example, "Insight" is incredible)

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 3 February 2017 22:57 (two months ago) Permalink

I have said this before -- hell, I've said it to Martin Gore directly -- that "Insight" is one of my all-time keepers from the band. Hell of an album closer but just an astonishing song and performance.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 3 February 2017 23:00 (two months ago) Permalink

The thing is, after three Ben Hillier-produced records, I was secretly hoping for something different in the production department.

Yeah this was crossing my mind as well. Guess we'll have to wait on the album.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 3 February 2017 23:01 (two months ago) Permalink

Yeah, I'm partly hoping that this is some kind of "red herring" first single and there'll be some surprises on the new record. I'm not expecting anything radically different in the lyrics department (particularly based on that title) but I'm hoping for something that doesn't sound like a continuation of their last three records.

Ultra's grown into one of my favourite Depeche albums in recent years, for the way that it sounds more than anything, but the songwriting was still strong in hindsight.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Friday, 3 February 2017 23:08 (two months ago) Permalink

Ok this single is terrible. Maybe their worst first single ever. Gahan's singing style has changed so much by now that I feel like I'm listening to a wholly different band

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Saturday, 4 February 2017 22:20 (two months ago) Permalink

1. "Going Backwards"
2. "Where's the Revolution"
3. "The Worst Crime"
4. "Scum"
5. "You Move"
6. "Cover Me"
7. "Eternal"
8. "Poison Heart"
9. "So Much Love"
10. "Poorman"
11. "No More (This Is The Last Time)"
12. "Fail"

The tracklisting, apparently!

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Sunday, 5 February 2017 10:40 (two months ago) Permalink

I agree with pretty much everything said here. It sounds more like a b-side from the last album rather their once every four years "comeback" single.

Yes, "Ultra" is amazing (but a bit too long) and "Insight" is an all-timer.

NoTimeBeforeTime, Sunday, 5 February 2017 15:24 (two months ago) Permalink

If that's the actual tracklisting this is already shaping up to be the most dour album they've released since Black Celebration.

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 5 February 2017 15:27 (two months ago) Permalink

I think it's legit, tbh... there's pictures of the album art doing the rounds on FB (one of the pictures in the inlay is a picture of the band wielding hammers a la Construction Time Again) and you can just about make out a few of the titles ... several of the titles crop up in this Rolling Stone piece:

It'd seem like even though the title suggests the usual angel/devil/sin/knees angle, that this is going to be more of a "state of the world" record.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Sunday, 5 February 2017 18:07 (two months ago) Permalink

The image of Dave screaming into the microphone perfectly illustrates what has killed my enjoyment of their music.

brotherlovesdub, Sunday, 5 February 2017 19:40 (two months ago) Permalink

Well to be fair, that's pretty much how he's been doing things live for decades now.

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 5 February 2017 19:48 (two months ago) Permalink

Since I quit buying their music after SOFAD, that lines up with my purchases.

brotherlovesdub, Sunday, 5 February 2017 21:52 (two months ago) Permalink

Just put on Playing the Angel this morning, which still remains up there with Violator. Puzzling to see them squander it all ever since.

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Monday, 6 February 2017 08:39 (two months ago) Permalink

I wish Playing The Angel wasn't mastered so loudly, and I still can't get on board with 'I Want It All', but I think the songwriting is mostly strong on it even if the production could have been better.

Working night & day, I tried to stay awake... (Turrican), Monday, 6 February 2017 11:03 (two months ago) Permalink

Yikes, pretty bad lead single, and similar production to the last three albums. Like Turrican, miss the days when every album had a different sound from the last - I could get excited about a new album as long as it went in a new direction.

Vinnie, Monday, 6 February 2017 16:15 (two months ago) Permalink

I wish they would just go full-on dad-dance and record vocals over the VCMG album

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Monday, 6 February 2017 16:58 (two months ago) Permalink

Single is almost entirely devoid of redeeming features as far as I can hear.

Matt DC, Monday, 6 February 2017 17:14 (two months ago) Permalink

An at-times hairy video

On a second listen, song's working much better for me.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 10 February 2017 05:01 (two months ago) Permalink

On a second listen, song's working much better for me.

Same.

Ⓓⓡ. (Johnny Fever), Friday, 10 February 2017 05:46 (two months ago) Permalink

I wish they would just go full-on dad-dance and record vocals over the VCMG album

― ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Monday, February 6, 2017 10:58 AM (four days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

yessss

also I listened to some live stuff the other day and Martin's vocals are really good?

mh 😏, Friday, 10 February 2017 15:14 (two months ago) Permalink

I still think parts of this are really awkward musically, although really nothing is as awkward as the "dance break" during the "train is coming" bridge in the video.

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 10 February 2017 15:48 (two months ago) Permalink

should I... watch the video? thinking after that comment, maybe not

mh 😏, Friday, 10 February 2017 15:49 (two months ago) Permalink

At least when The Cure did the video for "Why Can't I Be You???" I'm pretty sure they were all high/drunk.

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 10 February 2017 15:49 (two months ago) Permalink

It's the first time Corbijn's done the lead video (as opposed to second or third ones) for a DM album in twenty years. (Still don't know why they ever bothered to use other people after he became their standby.)

Ned Raggett, Friday, 10 February 2017 16:12 (two months ago) Permalink

That said, the SOTU video run was pretty inspired. Exception that proves the rule.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 10 February 2017 16:13 (two months ago) Permalink

The videos for Wrong and Hole To Feed are flat-out incredible IMO

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 10 February 2017 16:14 (two months ago) Permalink

And don't knock "Peace" either. That's pretty inspired but doesn't get as much attention.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 10 February 2017 16:16 (two months ago) Permalink

Wrong video a+

wasn't it one of the dudes from Liars in the video?

mh 😏, Friday, 10 February 2017 16:16 (two months ago) Permalink

I don't think I ever saw the video for "Peace"

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 10 February 2017 16:28 (two months ago) Permalink

um okay WOW

ornate orchestral arrangements (DJP), Friday, 10 February 2017 16:32 (two months ago) Permalink

Haha but better to underplay expectations, surely? I will say that the whole lyrical theme throughout is definitely indicated by "Where's the Revolution?" -- expressions of regression, exhaustion, frustration, holding on to where/when one can. So credit them for committing to the full.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 17 March 2017 13:30 (one month ago) Permalink

first song is kind of great and "Where's the Revolution?" works better in context, much like "Heaven" did on Delta Machine (neither was a good single choice IMO)

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 13:40 (one month ago) Permalink

Yeah I was thinking very much the same -- having "Going Backwards" set up "Where's the Revolution?" is an excellent one-two.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 17 March 2017 14:10 (one month ago) Permalink

Listening now, and "Cover Me" is lovely. I hope there is more like this and less of the distorto-blues thing.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 17 March 2017 14:52 (one month ago) Permalink

You mean there isn't a song on this where Gahan goes "*croak*aaaaaaaaiiiiiinnnnnggggeeeehhhllll" like he's constipated!?

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Friday, 17 March 2017 14:58 (one month ago) Permalink

Ha, yeah, this album is pretty turgid. I listen to albums on shuffle, generally, and the second this one ended a Julianna Barwick track popped on, and before I realized it was her I thought the album had suddenly taken a turn for the interesting.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 17 March 2017 15:30 (one month ago) Permalink

I haven't heard it yet, but I guess it's not hard to guess what the album sounds like!

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Friday, 17 March 2017 17:02 (one month ago) Permalink

Eh, I wouldn't go that far. 6 songs in and it's a good deal more energetic than that "everything is mid-tempo" listenthrough description would lead you to believe. The lyrics are thematically monochromatic with varying levels of success ("Going Backwards" and "Cover Me" are very good at delivering their message; "Where's the Revelution" and "Scum" are... not as good).

If you hate nu-Dave singing, nothing I've heard so far will change your mind.

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 17:08 (one month ago) Permalink

Slap a "thematically monochromatic" sticker on the cover, because that about sums it up. Can't imagine coming back to this album, sounds like the band could really use a fresh approach, assuming they have it in them.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 17 March 2017 17:31 (one month ago) Permalink

On the other hand, the subject matter they're tackling in the times we are currently experiencing is worth the attempt. Not sure it's 100% successful but I think it's overstating things to call this album an unbearable slog if you listen to it in order.

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 17:36 (one month ago) Permalink

It definitely wasn't unbearable, no.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 17 March 2017 17:39 (one month ago) Permalink

Are there any surprises in the production department?

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Friday, 17 March 2017 17:46 (one month ago) Permalink

It sounds a lot more like Playing the Angel than "Where's the Revolution?" would lead you to believe.

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 18:04 (one month ago) Permalink

You Move is disorienting as hell, btw; whose idea was it to drop a 16th note from third measure of every group of four in the verse?

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 19:01 (one month ago) Permalink

btw: https://twitter.com/i/live/839261822683226112

currently Martin is singing "Little Soul"

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 19:39 (one month ago) Permalink

and now "Where's the Revolution?"

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 19:41 (one month ago) Permalink

it seems he's toned down the use of vocal fry to initiate his vocal lines in live performance, anyway; it's still there but not on every single line like it was circa SOTU

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 19:42 (one month ago) Permalink

Had to miss that performance, work meetings etc. But I'm sure it'll be around.

On the other hand, the subject matter they're tackling in the times we are currently experiencing is worth the attempt. Not sure it's 100% successful but I think it's overstating things to call this album an unbearable slog if you listen to it in order.

Agreed. Thus my comments which others apparently took the wrong way! And yeah, definitely worth the attempt. It's classic 'broad stroke' social commentary from Depeche, but the thing is, it can work or at least flow at its best. Sonically it ain't Black Celebration but lyrically definitely the closest they've been in a while.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 17 March 2017 20:24 (one month ago) Permalink

I liked a lot of Sounds of the Universe but found Delta Machine a snooze and so far this one is no better. Major props to Gahan for his Spencer statement, though.

a serious and fascinating fartist (Simon H.), Friday, 17 March 2017 20:38 (one month ago) Permalink

I am very much in favor of "Fail"

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, 17 March 2017 21:13 (one month ago) Permalink

Was disappointed with this initially but gets better in the second half I think. Some lyrics are making me cringe, but that's always been the case with this band.

silverfish, Friday, 17 March 2017 21:34 (one month ago) Permalink

I very much like this album, more than the last three (although i really like parts of Delta Machine). It's succinct, for one thing; like a normal album length. It's more of a mood album. I'm very pleased.

akm, Friday, 17 March 2017 22:41 (one month ago) Permalink

where's the revolution?

reggie (qualmsley), Monday, 20 March 2017 17:51 (one month ago) Permalink

I am beginning to warm to "Scum"

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Monday, 20 March 2017 18:37 (one month ago) Permalink

lol @ this RYM review "both the opener and closer describe this album perfectly"

frogbs, Monday, 20 March 2017 18:41 (one month ago) Permalink

Scum starts awful but turns into something great

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Monday, 20 March 2017 19:27 (one month ago) Permalink

now I'm imagining a Depeche Mode/LCD Soundsystem mashup

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Monday, 20 March 2017 19:28 (one month ago) Permalink

(North American) Scum

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Monday, 20 March 2017 20:38 (one month ago) Permalink

I still haven't heard this yet (I know, I know!) but I have been working my way up to it by listening to all the albums from Ultra onwards and... y'know, I think both Sounds of the Universe and Delta Machine have some good stuff on 'em, just that both albums are too long. Exciter still mostly bores the tits off me, though.

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Monday, 20 March 2017 22:59 (one month ago) Permalink

Listened to this all the way through tonight, while proofreading. I remember how exactly none of the songs went. They really seem to have lost any ability they had to write memorable melodies and choruses. These songs were all about a particular kind of soporific, morose mood, and I feel like all the other post-Violator albums I've heard have been like that, too. I mean, I'm not a fan - I like Masses a lot, Violator slightly less, and don't really care about anything else, but I feel like if the songs were better on the other albums I could care. But they're not, so I don't.

Don Van Gorp, midwest regional VP, marketing (誤訳侮辱), Tuesday, 21 March 2017 01:19 (one month ago) Permalink

To contrast this (understandable enough) take: I'm on my third listen or so and as I figured, it's both sinking in further and feeling a little more individual and distinct song for song the more I listen. If the exchange has been less immediate out of the gate singalongs in favor of something that seeps into the memory, then weirdly enough I'm not minding at all.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 21 March 2017 04:04 (one month ago) Permalink

So, I'm halfway through my first listen to this and I'm enjoying this way, way more on the first listen than the previous two. Yes, it's a slow-paced record in places, but I'm enjoying how this record sounds.

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Tuesday, 21 March 2017 23:05 (one month ago) Permalink

You Move is disorienting as hell, btw; whose idea was it to drop a 16th note from third measure of every group of four in the verse?

― Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Friday, March 17, 2017 7:01 PM (four days ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Ha, yes! That one's a Gore/Gahan co-write, I think. I love the feeling of that one!

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Tuesday, 21 March 2017 23:09 (one month ago) Permalink

Basically, I think this album sounds great and both Martin and Dave are performing well, but I think the big difference for me is that lyrically it moves away from themes that were starting to feel like a bit of a crutch by this point and instead explores themes which are far less trodden in DM's discography. It's great to be able to listen to a DM record without thinking "I've heard this before"

Songwriting wise, I've suspected all along that this album is going to be moody and not full of pop bangers, so I'm not disappointed that it's not 12 re-writes of 'Enjoy The Silence', but I am delighted that it's not the consistently mid-paced slog that some reviews/previews painted it as, and there are some uptempo moments. I suspect this record will grow on me further.

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Tuesday, 21 March 2017 23:28 (one month ago) Permalink

Third listen now, and ready to call this their best LP since Playing the Angel...

Coolio Iglesias (Turrican), Wednesday, 22 March 2017 14:43 (one month ago) Permalink

I still like Sounds of the Universe a lot but it's very uneven in comparison; The beginning rules, the end rules, the middle is enjoyable enough if I make myself listen to it but I almost never want to.

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Wednesday, 22 March 2017 14:48 (one month ago) Permalink

Some interesting technical detail buried in this story (perhaps already linked)

http://consequenceofsound.net/2017/03/depeche-modes-martin-gore-and-andy-fletcher-explain-how-to-save-the-world/

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 22 March 2017 17:14 (one month ago) Permalink

so, there is a special edition with a disc of 'jungle spirit' remixes - '

i am assuming these aren't jungle remixes ?

are they worthy of the extra ££ for the album ?

mark e, Thursday, 23 March 2017 13:07 (one month ago) Permalink

eh

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Thursday, 23 March 2017 13:30 (one month ago) Permalink

They aren't bad but I wouldn't call any of them essential.

Rachel Luther Queen (DJP), Thursday, 23 March 2017 13:30 (one month ago) Permalink

ahh.
checked the credits via discogs expecting some current remixer names involved with them, but they are all done by the band and someone under the alias matrixxman.

mark e, Thursday, 23 March 2017 13:34 (one month ago) Permalink

just in case some folks aren't aware.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p04wv8vb/the-6-music-festival-depeche-mode

mark e, Monday, 27 March 2017 10:09 (one month ago) Permalink

a couple of songs are available globally here:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/events/e368gw/acts/ajbxp6#p04wv8vb

illegal economic migration (Tracer Hand), Monday, 27 March 2017 11:59 (one month ago) Permalink

matrixxman (us techno producer / dj) was the programmer on the album.

i must have seen 100 gigs at glasgow barrowlands over the years. the atmosphere there is always famously electric but last night at depeche mode was probably in the top 3 ever. great, great crowd!

stirmonster, Monday, 27 March 2017 12:37 (one month ago) Permalink

Yeah I was duly jealous of friends who attended. And now that includes you!

Ned Raggett, Monday, 27 March 2017 13:37 (one month ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Nice new interview with Gore here

http://thequietus.com/articles/22177-martin-gore-depeche-mode-interview-2

Ned Raggett, Monday, 10 April 2017 17:45 (two weeks ago) Permalink

And I'm rather envious of the people attending these European shows given the opener:

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 April 2017 19:13 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Not really getting the love here for these guys but I totally see why Dave would pick them as openers

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Wednesday, 12 April 2017 19:48 (two weeks ago) Permalink

Listening to this again after a bit of a break from it and was half-expecting to listen to a couple of tracks and then switch off from it - but no, Spirit has turned out to be a record that I didn't think they had in 'em at this stage of their career: an album that is engaging from start to finish. The relatively trimmed-down length, the change in producer and the change of lyrical approach has worked wonders. It helps that this album feels as though it's about something, and not just an excuse to wheel out the angel/devil/knees/sin/chains etc. cliches again.

The Anti-Climax Blues Band (Turrican), Wednesday, 26 April 2017 18:48 (two days ago) Permalink

And for all my early reservations about the production circa the release of 'Where's The Revolution', headphone listens to Spirit have revealed a production which is far more deeper and layered than it first appears, and a much richer sonic experience than the three Ben Hillier albums.

The Anti-Climax Blues Band (Turrican), Wednesday, 26 April 2017 18:49 (two days ago) Permalink


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