This post is quite awesome as it features two of the best UK bands of all time as well as two huge favorites of mine. Back in 1999, Placebo released a cover they did of the great Depeche Mode song “I Feel You.” Originally the song was released as a fan club-only cassette in 1999, as well as a bonus track on the American edition of Placebo’s album, Black Market Music. Later on in 2003 as part of a bonus disc for Sleeping With Ghosts, it was released again. Depeche Mode is not an easy band to cover and do it well but, Placebo did it justice and the way Brian Molko sings, he really made it his own. I thoroughly enjoy both versions and each has their own vibe. I think you’ll enjoy this.
Depeche Mode is one of my favorite bands. Through the years, I’ve really come to admire the honest approach they take when they create albums. They’ve always stuck to their guns as to what they wanted to do and it’s paid off. All these years later and they are still putting out great music. This Ultimate Set List was a little difficult to make due to Depeche Mode having so many great songs but, I think I made one hell of a great set list.
Guideline 1: What line up of the band would it be
Guideline 2: Where would you want to see the show
Guideline 3: maximum 25 songs (In order of how the set should go)
Lineup: Dave Gahan, Martine Gore, Andy Fletcher, Alan Wilder
Venue: Santa Barbara Bowl
02) Everything Counts
03) Barrel Of A Gun
05) Behind The Wheel
06) Come Back
08) I Feel You
10) Black Celebration
11) Soothe My Soul
12) A Pain That I’m Used To
14) Walking In My Shoes
16) It’s No Good
17) The Dead Of Night
18) In Your Room
19) Policy Of Truth
20) No More (This Is The Last Time)
21) Dream On
22) Never Let Me Down Again
23) Enjoy The Silence
Since I’ve been on my Depeche Mode kick the past couple weeks, it has made me truly realize how amazing this band really is. Not that I didn’t think that before but, after delving deep into their catalog, starting with album number 1 till their newest, it’s not hard to come to the conclusion that Depeche Mode is one of those bands that will live on forever. While on this journey, I started to really look closely at their visual aspects. Over the years they have released some of the most artistic and unique music videos. Naturally, you know what that means… it’s time for a video rank! Here are the top ten videos by the one and only, Depeche Mode.
Yes, I am on a huge Depeche Mode kick right now. There is something so genuine and pure about a Depeche Mode album. Martin Gore’s songs along with Andy Fletcher’s soundscapes and Dave Gahan’s incredible vocals, make Depeche Mode a band that is timeless and exhilarating to listen to. One of my favorite stories about Depeche Mode is how they found Dave Gahan. The story goes, Vince Clarke (former member/founder of Yazoo and Erasure) was out one evening and saw Dave Gahan on stage doing a rendition of David Bowie’s “Heroes.” After that, Dave was in the band and Depeche Mode was born. So it’s only fitting that I share a cover of “Heroes” for you all to enjoy.
Depeche Mode is one of the most intriguing bands of the last 30 plus years. They have never been a band to keep making the same album. They’ve experimented and evolved in a way that is truly astounding. Each album stands out on it’s own. Some are better than others but the true essence of Depeche Mode is in each of their releases. Which brings me to their 1993 album Songs of Faith and Devotion. Following up an album like Violator is never easy but, this is Depeche Mode we are talking about. They followed up their breakthrough album with a record that took chances and showed just how really diverse Depeche Mode is.
Songs of Faith and Devotion is the eighth studio album in the bands catalog and it’s one of their more darker and aggressive albums. This album would be produced by Flood again and was recorded in a rented home which the band built a studio and live and worked in. This album saw the band become very interested in the alternative music that was taking over. Bands like Jane’s Addiction and Soundgarden have been mentioned as key inspirations for the albums sound and style. The making of the album was quite difficult. Growing tensions among band members and drug addiction had caused some very trying times for Depeche Mode. Despite all this, Songs of Faith and Devotion is one of the best pieces of work the band has ever put out. Songs like “Walking In My Shoes,” “I Feel You,” “Condemnation,” In Your Room,” “Rush,” and “Higher Love,” just further prove that this album is truly remarkable. Even with the addiction issues, Dave Gahan’s vocal performances on this album are beyond stellar. Martin Gore, in my opinion, outdid himself with the songs he wrote on this album. Perhaps the growing tensions within the group especially the most strained between drummer Alan Wilder and Gore, helped to make some of the bands best songs. The following promotional tour for the album, The Devotional Tour, would be regarded in the bands history as their most “debauched” rock tour ever. This tour would also be the catalyst for the long break the band took afterwards before they would begin work on their album, Ultra.
Depeche Mode’s catalog is full of so many great albums. Violator is always going to be the one that the “masses” reach for but, the deep fans know there is more than just “Personal Jesus” and “Enjoy The Silence.” Personally for me Songs of Faith and Devotion is in my top 3 favorite Depeche Mode albums (the other two are Music For The Masses and Exciter). There is something truly beautiful about how all the negativity that surrounded the making of this album created a record that surpassed an expectations that people would have. For almost 40 years now, Depeche Mode has proven you don’t need to make the same record twice. Taking chances and evolving in a way that still keeps the essence of the band in tact, has always been key to the bands success, and Songs of Faith and Devotion cements that fact.
As a band since 1980, Depeche Mode have cemented their legacy as an influential and inspirational group. They have released albums that will forever be the soundtracks to many lives. Through the years and 14 albums now, Depeche Mode have always followed the beat of their own drummer and their catalog shows that. Some albums are better than others and then there are those albums that are quite underrated. Anyways, below is a ranking of Depeche Mode’s albums from not their best to their best.
The date is March 19, 1990 and Depeche Mode have just unleashed the masterpiece Violator on the world. This album propelled the band into international notoriety and helped to usher in a new wave of alternative music. I also remember my dad buying me the cassette of Violator when I was 6 and I couldn’t stop listening to it. It’s pretty amazing how much my parents helped to keep my love of music growing since I was a wee lad.
Depeche Mode’s Violator, though only 9 songs, is deep and without compromise. Each song has a genuine purpose of being on the album and you get a genuine sense of “feeling” from every single one. Everyone knows “Personal Jesus,” “Enjoy The Silence,” and “Policy of Truth” but the real gems are the deep cuts on the album. “World In My Eyes,” “Halo” (which is my favorite song on the album), and “Clean” are a trifecta of artistic expression. “Sweetest Perfection” and “Waiting For The Night” are two of the best songs on the album along with “Halo.” Sorry but, I really think “Halo” is one of their best songs ever. The one song that I was never too keen on as a stand alone song “Blue Dress” is quite a dark song. The way it fits right after “Policy Of Truth” is truly remarkable.
The oozing of sexuality and darkness through the entire album is captivating and sophisticating. Martin Gore proved on Violator that he is a force to be reckoned with as a songwriter. Dave Gahan’s voice and conviction singing the words of Gore, makes it seem as though he wrote them himself. Not to mention the production by Mark “Flood” Ellis, (who you might know from his work with U2, Nine Inch Nails, PJ Harvey and The Smashing Pumpkins) which really accentuated the use of synthesizers, live drums, drum machines, and guitars. His knack for getting the best tones for the songs and albums is absolutely remarkable.
Violator stands out in the bands catalog for not only being the most successful but the one that some believe to be their peak of creativity. Personally, I love that the band has been able to keep on their legacy of creating new music and albums that still carry the torch for the band. Since the 25 years since the release of Violator, Depeche Mode has gone on to release 7 more albums and continue to sell out venues all around the world. The magnitude of influence the band has left over the years is insurmountable.