Depeche Mode C or D/S& D

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Since there hasn't been a C or D ?'s concerning this band I'm curious to know what are your thoughts on DM.

MICHELINE, Monday, 8 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

I could have sworn there was one somewhere. Anyway, it will surprise no one that I think they're CLASSIC CLASSIC CLASSIC. Basically, after an annoying album and a half they entered a zone where they had to try really, really hard to create a song I disliked (I think the last one was "It's Called A Heart").

Dan Perry, Monday, 8 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

What Dan said, of course, except I also like that early stuff too. ;-) Micheline, I could have sworn *you* were the one to do this very thread last year or something. ;-)

Ned Raggett, Monday, 8 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

This is because you're twee, Ned. :)

Dan Perry, Monday, 8 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink


Ned Raggett, Monday, 8 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

No that was a taking sides question concerning DM and Erasure

MICHELINE, Monday, 8 July 2002 00:00 (sixteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
Goddammit this thread died too soon. And having watched the 101 DVD over the weekend, my love for this band is once again turned up to full. All those great songs and performances and they hadn't even hit the Violator era yet! And they packed out the Rose Bowl! And they OWNED that crowd, and Jesus what they were coming up with and pulling off in stadium-level situations in an era before the laptops made it easy. Man, if only I could have gone...

So classic. So perfectly classic.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:24 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

they are truly amazing. once you have a certain amount of knowledge about music, its hard to pick a favorite band. one ends up rationalizing to a certain extent (ie "they are my favorite band now" or "they are my favorite group from this genre" or "the term band is so limiting"), but i am starting to think that really, depeche mode is my favorite band.

Some Great Reward

Aaron Grossman (aajjgg), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:32 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Black Celebration is better than Some Great Reward surely?

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:34 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

i dunno.. some great reward has intimate attachments more than black celebration. its the difference between buying an album and having it slot perfectly into one's life at the time, regardless of objective quality, versus buying something because one knows one must own it.

Aaron Grossman (aajjgg), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:36 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Re: The 101 doco. I find it kind of amusing that the format they chose (choosing and bringing a group of fans along on tour) was the unconscious format groundbreaker for yr average and so so common reality tv show now. It seemed quite novel at the time.

Kim (Kim), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:36 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Kim OTM, indeed -- I was thinking that a couple of years back, and in the DVD liner notes Pennebaker notes the same thing! As do the band members in conversation with Pennebaker and his wife on the commentary track -- I do think that had a telling impact in unrecognized ways. One nice thing about the DVD release is that it includes interviews with three of the bus kids -- and it turns out one of them, Oliver (the one with the v. spiky hair) became the Horrorist ("One Night in NYC") and there's a brief closeup of a feature done on him by none other than Simon Reynolds!

Ned Raggett (Ned), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:51 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I think the thing when it comes to Depeche as an influence and place -- Aaron was talking about this -- is that almost EVERY electronic musician I have ever known around my age or a little bit younger started out as a Depeche freak. Not all, of course, but whether it's in interviews or namechecks or album thank you lists or more. Time will change this to some degree but I think the impact is near seismic.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Monday, 8 December 2003 04:57 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

i think it helps that they were always the most "rock" (in packaging not necessarily the music itself.)... i seems less of a stretch to get to them from indie rock compared to, say, the Associates.

Aaron Grossman (aajjgg), Monday, 8 December 2003 05:07 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

101 was my favourite movie when I was in Junior High although I haven't seen it for years now. I remember random scenes like Martin and Andy(?) in the music shop in Nashville and the old lady is asking them about country music and they replied in their British accents: "we don't know much about it". There was also the bit where one of the kids on the bus, maybe Oliver although it could have been Chris, caught his girlfriend in bed with another guy. The scene where Dave is playing pinball backstage singing "Love Is The Drug" was my first introduction to Roxy Music. As far as the concert footage, the end of the final show when all 70 000, or whatever insane number of people were at the Rosebowl that night, are singing the refrain to "Everything Counts", used to give me chills. I suspect that if were to watch it again, that it still might.

J-rock (Julien Sandiford), Monday, 8 December 2003 08:03 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

haha - i was listening to my depeche mode cd-r (i only think they made one great album - guess which - but puh-lenty more great songs) friday night (goddamn nothing can make me feel 12 years old like "strangelove") and i had a really really bad idea for a "novel" i think i might actually put pen to paper on just cuz it was such a bad idea, i need to refresh my dennis cooper first though. i also would really really like to hear a sharon jones & the dap-kings remake of 'the policy of truth'.

cinniblount (James Blount), Monday, 8 December 2003 08:58 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Blount, you are an inspired madman. :-) (And J-Rock -- it was Chris. He's one of the ones interviewed for the DVD and he's still friends with that old girlfriend and calls her up on the phone to tell her what he's being interviewed for!)

Ned Raggett (Ned), Monday, 8 December 2003 14:41 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

eight months pass...
And now I revive this again to note that the archives are once again being trawled very well -- Devotional is coming out on DVD next month. For all that this was filmed in Dave's smack hell era, the shows I caught were excellent and it was Alan Wilder's farewell turn overseeing the arrangements, and I'm glad to finally be getting the full show (for whatever reason the American release left off about half an hour when it first appeared on video eleven years back).

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 00:25 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

How long before a UK femme-pop cover of "Personal Jesus"? It is *surely* only a matter of time now what with that new Whigfield single.

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 00:49 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Hm! What is said new Whigfield single, m'friend?

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 00:52 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Was A Time". It's not Depeche Mode but it's schaffel-pop (people are comparing it to "Rendez-Vu" because of the spanish guitar but I actually think it sounds like early Saint Etienne). Along with "Some Girls" though (and Rachel Stevens covering "Knock On Wood" live) it just makes a pop-cover of "Personal Jesus" seem like the most obvious thing in the world.

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 03:36 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I am content with this beautiful idea.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 03:36 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Depeche Mode was my first music love. And like all first loves, they will always have a special place in my heart.

The new Junior Boys actually reminds me a little of "A Broken Frame", one of my fav DM albums.

kickitcricket (kickitcricket), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 03:42 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I've seen the full Devotional show (MuchMusic aired it way back in the day), so I can't wait for the DVD.
Who has seen the Exciter Live in Paris DVD? And what's with DM having a thing with filming shows in Paris? (Devotional, Exciter, and I think there was one other).
I've said this on other DM threads, but the post-SOFAD era is as underrated as SOFAD is overrated.

Barry Bruner (Barry Bruner), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 03:45 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Who has seen the Exciter Live in Paris DVD? And what's with DM having a thing with filming shows in Paris? (Devotional, Exciter, and I think there was one other).

I've got that, it's great. Actually, Devotional was filmed in Frankfurt and Barcelona...

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 03:56 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

In grade 12 they were one of my very favourite bands: classic!

I threw on Exciter a month ago, though, and couldn't get through it, which was sad, as I'd quite enjoyed it upon release. The 84-90 period seems to have aged the best, for my taste.

Ultra is definitely underrated.

derrick (derrick), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 05:05 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Ultra is great! Not only one of their best but I think also Tim Simenon's personal masterpiece.

I recently discovered the Thomas Brinkmann mix of "I Feel Loved" - wow. The original underwhelmed me though.

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 05:07 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

depeche mode were the first band i ever saw live (in 83).
loved them since hearing dreaming of me on radio luxemburg's new romantic charts, courtesy of my brother. and they introduced me to portion control in 84. fantastic band who, like all other bands, did things i didn't care much for, but on a whole still listen to.

frenchbloke (frenchbloke), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 07:42 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

A friend made me buy 'Music for the Masses' in the summer of '99 after we got out of a work dinner at Milestones(which was blah). I listened to it on the Skytrain home to Surrey. Oddly, MftM is the album I listen to least today. That was in August, maybe. I spent all fall collecting the rest.

derrick (derrick), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 08:04 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

yep the devotional show dvd will rock. i've got the vhs. damn i should have e-bay'd it before the dvd came out!

saw the devotional tour twice in 3 nights at birmingham and manchester. took my little sister to the latter (front row!)
and she's honestly never been the same since. that tour had the greatest opening to a gig i've ever seen or heard of.

it was only later that people realised what had actually been going on backstage each night, and the likes of Q mag would start calling it 'the most debauched tour of all time'.

the singles 86-98 dvd box has the best extras ever (EPK stuff)
by the way y'all.

piscesboy, Tuesday, 10 August 2004 10:04 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I always wanted to be a fly on the wall for the recording of SoFaD.

derrick (derrick), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 10:18 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I hear Marilyn Manson are going to release a cover of 'Personal Jesus' with their upcoming 'Greatest Hits', or whatever it is going to be called. Not exactly UK femme-pop, but that should be fun.

thomas, Tuesday, 10 August 2004 11:10 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Won't it just be like that remix Goldfrapp did for them?

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 22:04 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I was thinking just this afternoon as I walked home that I find "It's No Good" to be a stunningly engaging song. Something that surprises me since it's so far removed (in time) from my actual DM fandom.

Kim (Kim), Tuesday, 10 August 2004 22:59 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

DM were the first band I was ever obsessed with. It's been more than 10 years since I have listened to them on a regular basis, but I'm very pleasantly surprised at how well most of their material has aged. I think I may have said something similar before on a New Order thread, but I'm also glad that people have begun to acknowledge exactly how prescient and far ahead of their time they were with regards to their use of technology.

J-rock (Julien Sandiford), Wednesday, 11 August 2004 02:32 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Ultra is great! Not only one of their best but I think also Tim Simenon's personal masterpiece.

Definitely agreed there. I do love Exciter quite a bit but it would be really interesting to see another Simenon-produced album.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Wednesday, 11 August 2004 02:35 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Useless" is their most underrated single.

VengaDan Perry (Dan Perry), Wednesday, 11 August 2004 12:36 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Generally a bit pants, but 'Enjoy the Silence' is incredible.

Wooden (Wooden), Wednesday, 11 August 2004 12:37 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

And here's another upcoming goodie -- a three disc remix collection. Lots of the older remixes plus a few new ones -- and indeed, a remix single of "Enjoy the Silence" to go with it. OH DARN.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Thursday, 12 August 2004 22:20 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

And proof of what Dan and I knew already:

"Depeche Mode is one of the most influential groups of our time", says Mike Shinoda on one of his favourite bands, "Their music is an inspiration to me, and I am excited for our fans to hear my take on one of my favourite Depeche Mode songs."

Ned Raggett (Ned), Thursday, 12 August 2004 22:27 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

That remix collection looks pretty serious. I'm quite grateful for the inclusion of the Beatmasters mix of "Behind the Wheel (Route 66)". Used to love that one, but I haven't heard it in years.

J-rock (Julien Sandiford), Friday, 13 August 2004 04:53 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I might have to buy this I think since I don't have the Portishead remix of "In Your Room" or the Adrian Sherwood "Master & Servant" any more.

aldo_cowpat (aldo_cowpat), Friday, 13 August 2004 07:32 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Wait, Mike Shinoda is their MC, right? So I suppose we're going to get dodgy rapping over the EtS instrumental...check please!

I'm a bit dissapointed that the unreleased Markus Schulz remix of "I Feel Loved" is not on that 3CD. It's a hell of a lot better than that Danny Tenaglia version. So everybody, off to soulseek!!

Siegbran (eofor), Friday, 13 August 2004 11:30 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

So I suppose we're going to get dodgy rapping over the EtS instrumental...check please!

Even if it's just that, I'll be intrigued to hear the end results. Now about this Schulz remix on slsk which say if you were signed on to anytime soon we might be able to find somewhere in a folder that might be yours... ;-)

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 13 August 2004 11:47 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Now that folder might or might not exist...

Siegbran (eofor), Friday, 13 August 2004 11:57 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Damn, I was just going to suggest a S&D for remixes before I saw that link. Just picked up Kevorkian's mixes of "Policy of Truth" tonight and am enjoying them -- they're a little clunky but not overbearingly so. Obviously Brinkman's is a stone cold classic. The Sherwood I've never heard. How are some of the recent ones like Isan?

philip sherburne (philip sherburne), Saturday, 14 August 2004 03:17 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Wow, impressive, although would it have killed them to include one of the original mixes of "Enjoy the Silence"? (hello, Quad Mix anyone??)

However, the LFO mix on the re-released single will go a long way toward earning my forgiveness. That, and because it's one of the greatest songs ever written.

Barry Bruner (Barry Bruner), Saturday, 14 August 2004 06:18 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i'm surprised the remix collection is only 3 discs. the isan remix sounds like...isan really. very pretty, soporific, iirc it's a dub, too. there is a lawrence remix on a recent-ish martin gore single that's very nice - the tune is "Das Lied Vom Einsamen Mädchen". i can't find any info about the lfo remix of "enjoy the silence", but my interested is certainly piqued. one of my favorite depeche mode remixes is the grantby mix of "home".

tricky disco, Saturday, 14 August 2004 10:53 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Breathing In Fumes" on CD!!!!!

VengaDan Perry (Dan Perry), Saturday, 14 August 2004 13:40 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I think it already is? On the singles box sets -- which this cherry-picks from to a large extent, of course, but hey.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Saturday, 14 August 2004 14:02 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Also, this

Cunga, Tuesday, 29 June 2010 20:35 (eight years ago) Permalink

Shia would have to learn to dance like Gahan for a film to even begin production. It's bizzare how I NEVER get sick of this band.

Soft Sad Tecmo Bowl (Spinspin Sugah), Tuesday, 29 June 2010 20:50 (eight years ago) Permalink

ten months pass...

Dave wins an award, does songs, Martin helps.

When routine bites hard, indeed.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 7 May 2011 14:27 (eight years ago) Permalink


It's pretty good?

\(^o\) (/o^)/ (ENBB), Saturday, 7 May 2011 14:48 (eight years ago) Permalink

Had I been at this thing I would have completely lost my shit upon realizing what he was about to sing.

\(^o\) (/o^)/ (ENBB), Saturday, 7 May 2011 14:49 (eight years ago) Permalink

I like how there are two waves of audience reactions -- to the first notes of the music, then the opening lyrics.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 7 May 2011 14:54 (eight years ago) Permalink

Yeah, I noticed that too.

\(^o\) (/o^)/ (ENBB), Saturday, 7 May 2011 14:55 (eight years ago) Permalink

Still find it sort of cool that there were at least three of us at that rainy CNE show. Barry and I figured out years ago that we both count it as our first concert, but didn't know til this thread that Rob Bolton was there too. Any more?

Kim, Saturday, 7 May 2011 15:09 (eight years ago) Permalink

nine months pass...

I've been on a real Depeche Mode kick since the 101 documentary was aired on BBC 4 the other night. They're one of those bands that I only dig out every so often these days, but when I do I greet them like an old friend and always think "damn, I need to do this more often!"

ULTRA: ***.5

Turrican, Friday, 17 February 2012 23:58 (seven years ago) Permalink

Reasonably good rankings. I am one of two people that happily enjoys Exciter.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 18 February 2012 01:05 (seven years ago) Permalink

And wrote the AMG wreview!

dream words & nightmare paragraphs from a red factory in a dead town (Abbbottt), Saturday, 18 February 2012 01:07 (seven years ago) Permalink

sorry for wsilent w

dream words & nightmare paragraphs from a red factory in a dead town (Abbbottt), Saturday, 18 February 2012 01:07 (seven years ago) Permalink

I'll always have a special place in my heart for Speak & Spell, because it was the first Depeche Mode album I remember consciously hearing from front-to-back. This would have been back when my age was merely in single figures, and it would have been my dad's old tape copy of the album... but I do have some early memories of running around the living room with my younger sister while 'Photographic' was blasting out of the speakers. I also remember the 'sensation' I used to get when 'New Life' used to kick in, one of those early moments in life when I first became aware of how powerful music could be!

I suppose as an album it will always be remembered for being somewhat of an anomaly in Depeche Mode's catalogue, with most of the songs being written by Vince Clarke, and it having the bouncy (and probably the most-cited song from this era of the band) 'Just Can't Get Enough' on it. However, I was listening to it earlier and realised that, even though it's obviously less dark than pretty much every Depeche Mode album that came afterwards, there is still a hint of darkness in there. 'Puppets' for example, written by Vince, is obviously a song about addiction, and seems (to me, anyway) to be much, much less cheery in subject matter than a hell of a lot of what Vince would do later. 'Photographic', too, even though it may not have a dark subject matter, seems to have an atmosphere musically to it that I don't think Vince recaptured until select moments on Erasure's 'Chorus' album, while Depeche eventually built and built upon it until it resonated in stadiums the world over.

It does have its flaws: 'What's Your Name?' is a track I quite liked when I was a 6 year old, but I find it a little bit too sickly-cutesy these days. On the whole though, I think the overall sound of the album has held up well, with its 'clean' analogue sound, and I think it's a very well produced, very sharply-written pop record in its own right, even if it isn't the Depeche Mode that recorded, say, 'Ultra'.

Turrican, Saturday, 18 February 2012 03:32 (seven years ago) Permalink

After Vince Clarke left the band, I definitely think it took the band a couple of albums to find their feet again. A Broken Frame, to me, is an interesting record for many different reasons. It's not only the sound of Depeche Mode trying to prove themselves all over again post-Vince, but it also comes across to me as being a logical follow-up to Speak & Spell. The elements it shares with Speak & Spell are definitely not only in its analogue sound, but there also seem to be moments on the album which one could say were more than a touch 'Clarke-aping', for want of a better term, even if the band hadn't consciously set out to do that. So, obviously, what we end up with in A Broken Frame is an album with one foot in one place, and one foot in a slightly different place stylistically. Also, in A Broken Frame we also have a situation where Martin Gore, even though he's no stranger to writing songs at this early stage, is learning how to be the primary songwriter in Depeche Mode. Speak & Spell was a successful album in the UK in the early '80s, and as such, the band had already been 'defined' in the eyes of many and Gore's songwriting style was very (is) different to that of Clarke's - so there's this element of Gore's songs (some of which had actually been written pre-Depeche) being tailored to 'fit' Depeche Mode, while simultaneously giving hints of where his songwriting could take Depeche Mode on subsequent albums. It's a very interesting situation.

Obviously because of all the factors involved, A Broken Frame has many inconsistencies, and is certainly nowhere near as focused as Speak & Spell, but it is STILL quite listenable and has numerous keepers.

'Leave In Silence' and 'The Sun & The Rainfall', the opener and closer of the album, are in my opinion two magnificent songs that have held up very well. 'See You', too, while hardly as hard-hitting as, say, 'Stripped', is a gem of a song when taken on its own terms and has a hell of a lot of charm and a gorgeous melody, and I have a real soft spot for 'Nothing To Fear'.

'The Meaning Of Love' and 'A Photograph Of You' are probably two of the more obviously 'Clarke-aping' tracks, but if you have enough of a musical sweet-tooth they're pretty inoffensive and not the worst things here.

Of the rest of the tracks, there's a few 'experimental' (for this era of the band) moments: 'Monument' would be fine if it wasn't for the excruciating "anything passes when you need glasses" lyric, and 'Shouldn't Have Done That', lovely harmonies aside, doesn't do all that much for me. 'Satellite' seems like a pretty unsuccessful attempt at some kind of synth-reggae, and even on its own terms is, to me, a bit of a dud, and possibly one of Gore's worst songs overall.

Turrican, Saturday, 18 February 2012 04:10 (seven years ago) Permalink

It goes without saying that the second of Depeche Mode's 'post-Clarke feet finding' albums, Construction Time Again, is a far more confident record than A Broken Frame, but in my opinion it still shares with A Broken Frame a kind of feeling of 'transition'. While Gore definitely seems to be more confident in his role as Depeche Mode's primary songwriter, he hasn't yet hit upon the sex/love/sin/religion/relationship angle of his songwriting that would become his lyrical trademark and instead is writing here about more world/political-oriented themes. This not only sets the album apart slightly from A Broken Frame, but virtually everything else that Gore has written since.

Construction Time Again is also, of course, the first record that the band made with Alan Wilder, whose contribution to Depeche Mode would increase and increase throughout the years and whom would prove to be the bands 'secret weapon'. Wilder also contributes a couple of songs here (although he would later claim to have been somewhat of a reluctant songwriter for the band), so what we have in Construction Time Again is a band and its new member still learning how to work together, under the supervision of label boss Daniel Miller and studio wizard Gareth Jones, having definitely moved away from Speak & Spell, but still nowhere near being the band that entertained the masses at the Rose Bowl in 101.

Construction Time Again is the first of the 'metal-bashing' Depeche albums; the first where the band made incredible use of sampling and attempted to go for more sophistication and depth in the production and arrangements, and production-wise it is definitely leaps and bounds away from the first two albums and sonically on the 'next level', as it were. This is an album that, for me, definitely works best with a set of headphones - there's plenty of 'ear candy' and 'layers' of sound in there, especially on 'Pipeline', which may not be a great song but as a series of noises is just incredible.

However, I also feel that the production on this record hasn't aged as well as, say, Black Celebration or even Speak & Spell, especially those synth-brass sounds that litter tracks like 'Love, In Itself', 'The Landscape Is Changing' and 'Told You So'.

'Everything Counts' remains a fantastic song, and is definitely my highlight here. 'Two Minute Warning', written by Wilder, is another favourite, and definitely my favourite out of all of the songs he contributed to Depeche Mode, and may have made a great third single from the album in my opinion.

As for the lowlights: I've never really been too taken with 'Shame', and I find the lyrics on Wilder's 'The Landscape Is Changing' a little bit on the preachy side, not to meant cringeworthy and a touch embarrassing. I also have to allow myself a little smile that the same Dave Gahan who had been "looking for a fight for a few days" in 101, and became this long-haired, tattooed rock god Jesus figure around the time Songs Of Faith And Devotion, is singing lyrics like 'keep telling us we're to have fun/then take all the ice cream so we've got none' in 'More Than A Party', which kinda now sounds like a prototype version of the far more successful 'Something To Do' from the next album.

So yes, Construction Time Again is definitely an advancement, but for me the big advancement would come with their next record.

Turrican, Saturday, 18 February 2012 04:46 (seven years ago) Permalink

Ah yes, Some Great Reward. Everything that everyone came to know and love about Depeche Mode in their classic incarnation of Gahan, Gore, Wilder and Fletcher pretty much begins here. Gore has mostly moved away from political themes and towards relationships and the links between love, sex and religion, and in doing so has found his trademark lyrical voice. Wilder is now more fully integrated into the group, and has also gelled with a returning Daniel Miller and Gareth Jones to form the main backbone of the production team, so this is indeed a very confident and focused record.

The 'metal-bashing' that made its debut on Construction Time Again is back, but its also more fully integrated into the songs, and what songs they are! No less than FOUR out of NINE tracks here were singles: the beautiful piano ballad 'Somebody', the massive hit 'People Are People', the kinky sex-infused 'Master And Servant' (with added whip samples!), and the god-bothering 'Blasphemous Rumours' (if this wasn't an influence on Trent Reznor, it definitely should have been), and all of them, to me, still stand up very well and are just great, great songs.

Of the rest of the tracks, there's the hard-hitting opener 'Something To Do', which is definitely a favourite of mine, and I've always had a soft spot for 'It Doesn't Matter'. I've always found the lyrics quite touching on that one.

The weakest moments on this record, for me at least, are Wilder's track 'If You Want' ('exercise your basic right/we could build a building site' indeed), which is definitely easier to stomach than 'The Landscape Is Changing', but also definitely nowhere near as good as 'Two Minute Warning', I think. I've also never been a massive fan of 'Lie To Me'. It must be said though, that I would easily take these two tracks over the weakest moments of A Broken Frame and Construction Time Again.

Some Great Reward remains, to me, a very good record, and I feel that this is definitely the record that sets the wheels of the 'Wilder era' in motion. From this moment until Wilder departed after the tour for Songs Of Faith And Devotion, I don't think that Depeche put out a studio album that was anything less than great, even if the odd B-side, or even standalone single (yes, I'm looking at you, 'It's Called A Heart') failed to live up to the high standards that this band had between 1984-1993. A fantastic near-decade of work.

Turrican, Saturday, 18 February 2012 05:14 (seven years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

REMEMBER WHEN.. The final moment of KROQ-landia, basically. "DAPASH MOOD!"

ma ck ro ma ck ro (mackro mackro), Sunday, 14 April 2013 03:14 (six years ago) Permalink

I love that footage. I still remember the day it all went down.

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 14 April 2013 03:55 (six years ago) Permalink

Hehe that Wherehouse was my "local" record store for a few years - glad its posterity is insured

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Sunday, 14 April 2013 08:10 (six years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

today is David Gahan birthday, he is 52 today. happy birthday David!

Bee OK, Saturday, 10 May 2014 02:53 (five years ago) Permalink

two years pass...

New video collection in November of just about every one they've done, plus a lot of commentary:

Sadly there is one fatal flaw -- the apparent absence of this:

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 13 September 2016 16:13 (two years ago) Permalink

Hahahaha! That video is all-time! It's fun to watch it back-to-back with footage of Depeche Mode circa 1992 to see how much of a difference 10 years made.

the hair - it's lost its energy (Turrican), Tuesday, 13 September 2016 16:20 (two years ago) Permalink

By "10 years" I think you mean "drugs"

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 13 September 2016 16:22 (two years ago) Permalink

Hehehehe... yeah, that too!

the hair - it's lost its energy (Turrican), Tuesday, 13 September 2016 16:23 (two years ago) Permalink

I get the same feeling when I listen to With Sympathy and Psalm 69 back-to-back.

the hair - it's lost its energy (Turrican), Tuesday, 13 September 2016 16:24 (two years ago) Permalink

No *blu-ray*?? Baffling to issue remastered sound on a DVD.

Also no 'Halo'!

piscesx, Tuesday, 13 September 2016 18:42 (two years ago) Permalink

No *blu-ray*?? Baffling to issue remastered sound on a DVD.

That did make me wonder. At the same time, they might be figuring more visuals than audio.

Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 13 September 2016 18:44 (two years ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

New album and tour next year, I'm guessing? It's getting to that time again!

pen pineapple apple pen (Turrican), Wednesday, 5 October 2016 19:28 (two years ago) Permalink

Yeah, definitely!

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 5 October 2016 19:38 (two years ago) Permalink

It'll be 20 years since Ultra came out, too.

pen pineapple apple pen (Turrican), Wednesday, 5 October 2016 19:49 (two years ago) Permalink

six months pass...

This is so good. In 1982 Alyson Marlow sent the band a big list of questions:favorite color, TV show, shoe size? All on it and more. Amazingly they replied in full, really is quite sweet. I can't imagine Coldplay doing the same.

Dan Worsley, Thursday, 6 April 2017 18:32 (two years ago) Permalink

Split Enz, eh?

Some funny answers in there in hindsight, like Fletch saying 'Leave in Silence' is his favourite video! music and chicken have become intertwined (Turrican), Thursday, 6 April 2017 22:11 (two years ago) Permalink

DM night on BBC4 tonight!

Depeche Mode at the BBC

Including New Life, Just Can't Get Enough, Blasphemous Rumours and Personal Jesus.
View Programme information

The 6 Music Festival 2017, Depeche Mode

Highlights from Depeche Mode's headlining performance at the 6 Music Festival in Glasgow.
View Programme information

Depeche Mode: 101

Documentary about Depeche Mode's attempts to break America in 1989.


appalling description of 101 aside this all looks pretty good!

piscesx, Friday, 7 April 2017 11:21 (two years ago) Permalink

Christ, has it really been five years since BBC 4 last showed 101? music and chicken have become intertwined (Turrican), Friday, 7 April 2017 11:29 (two years ago) Permalink

I always liked Little 15.

I also like this Priku edit of it, its a little shameless but it works

saer, Friday, 7 April 2017 11:53 (two years ago) Permalink

Many xposts:

Fletch and Wilder both confessing to be Daily Mail readers, though... oosh! music and chicken have become intertwined (Turrican), Friday, 7 April 2017 18:08 (two years ago) Permalink

three months pass...

Thought this was a nice touch.

Eighties rockers Depeche Mode recoiled when white supremacist Richard Spencer dubbed them the “official band of the alt-right.”

how's life, Monday, 10 July 2017 16:03 (one year ago) Permalink

two weeks pass...

Week of Wonders (Ross), Thursday, 27 July 2017 15:12 (one year ago) Permalink

two months pass...


more Allegro-like (Turrican), Sunday, 15 October 2017 14:36 (one year ago) Permalink

eleven months pass...

Is there any good bio of the band? I'm pretty familiar with the 90s tale of disintegration and redemption, but not really familiar with the internal dynamics during their imperial phase.

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Tuesday, 9 October 2018 14:09 (eight months ago) Permalink

The Steve Malins book is still considered the best iirc.

piscesx, Tuesday, 9 October 2018 14:27 (eight months ago) Permalink

thanks - that looks perfect

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Tuesday, 9 October 2018 14:30 (eight months ago) Permalink

The Mute Records book with all the cover art in is also pretty essential. Not just for Mode stuff but all the artwork proofs etc. gave me nerdy goosebumps. Fascinating to see how much input Dan Miller had.

Lemon Kitten (Dan.S.), Tuesday, 9 October 2018 22:28 (eight months ago) Permalink

The Steve Malins book is good, but Stripped is the best book on Depeche Mode so far. The only problem is that it needs a revision, because it only goes up to around the time of Gahan's first solo album, when he started implying that he wasn't interested in Depeche Mode unless he had more of a creative say. Of course, there's been about 15 years and four more albums since. Malins' book only goes up to Ultra, iirc.

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Thursday, 11 October 2018 18:38 (eight months ago) Permalink

Malins has put out some revised editions since.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 11 October 2018 18:40 (eight months ago) Permalink

He has? I'll have to check those out. I wasn't sure if he was still writing or not, because I know he was managing Gary Numan for a while and then John Foxx... I think he's involved with Blancmange now?

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Thursday, 11 October 2018 18:45 (eight months ago) Permalink

He is indeed.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 11 October 2018 18:52 (eight months ago) Permalink

Who wrote ‘Stripped’?

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Thursday, 11 October 2018 19:03 (eight months ago) Permalink

Jonathan Miller. I haven't read it for years, which I guess is a good excuse to re-read it!

Le Baton Rose (Turrican), Thursday, 11 October 2018 19:25 (eight months ago) Permalink

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