Monday, 12 April 2010

Missing Piece

This sent in by our Electro Pop correspondent - Neil K

I'm pretty damn sure that Depeche Mode do nothing positive for Kevin, and I suspect, having read Petes' entertaining driving alphabet reviews, that they wont be appearing in the soon to be started 'D's'. With the call for outsiders to contribute, what an opportune moment then for plugging the UKs most successful group (in terms of consecutive top 40 singles ever - or something like that).

For me, the Depeche Mode pinnacle was the double whammy of Violator (their biggest commercial success) followed perversely by Songs of Faith and Devotion, where they reinvented their sound. The Yin and Yang of the band. The clean, processed electro pop edges of Violator. The one with Brit Awards single of the year, Enjoy The Silence and Personal Jesus. Followed four event filled (i.e. drug/overdose filled in the case of singer Dave Gahan) years later with the dirtier, more organic follow up, Songs of Faith and Devotion. The one with songs you probably can't remember - I Feel You - Walking In My Shoes. For those who know very little of the band history - this is the one where singer Dave ditched the short spikey hair cut, opting for long grunge style.

So, aside from getting dm on the Blog index - what led to making this my first posting topic (and last - unless you are ready for why Duran Duran are a really underrated band?)...? Well...I made my once every few month visit to last week (which used to be hourly visit - how times have changed!) and I had a lot of feelings Flood (Depeche Mode producer of two aforementioned albums pun intended) through me. The thing all fans had dreamed but never thought would happen had happened, albeit briefly, and it had totally gone under my radar for two months. Alan Wilder, the producer/musician ex member who shaped the DM sound and then left shortly after SoFaD some 15 years ago, citing that he was doing all the work for no recognition, had rejoined the band on stage for a special performance.

Oh. My. God.

The classic line up had reunited, played "Somebody" (double A-side with the fantastic Blasphemous Rumours), hugged each other, before Alan walked off stage to the same rapturous screams and applause his shocking arrival had brought. This is almost like John and George suddenly returning to Earth for a final Beatles shot. OK, that's pushing it, maybe more like the Gallagher brothers kissing and making up in fifteen years time. Why wasn't this bigger news? made no mention (not that they ever cared about dm other than making fun of Martins dress sense). The 10 o-clock news made no mention - must have been a news heavy day. Probably Madonna was in Malawi. they're at least talking, Alan no doubt got a live appearance buzz he's not had for years (his Recoil solo project has not played live (until later this month)...and not sold in perhaps...the four of them will return to the studio to produce masterpiece #3? If so, would it be what Godfather 3 was to 1 and 2? 15 years too late and with nothing new to say, a pale echo of past greatness? Or would it finally bring back that missing puzzle piece that has been lacking in the bands output since his departure?

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