Depeche Mode: “We could easily… just go out and play the hits, but that’s not what we’re about”

The pair also discussed the approach behind their new album Memento Mori.

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Depeche Mode

Image: Depeche Mode

More than four decades into their career, Depeche Mode reflect on all things old and new in an interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe.

Speaking about Memento Mori, their first album in six years, Depeche Mode explained how they decided to embrace the idea of “simplicity” while making the record.

“Some of the greatest songs from people like Bob Marley or John Lennon or the simplicity of them is what really stays with you forever,” vocalist Dave Gahan said. “When making this record, Martin and I were very aware of the fact that it was not to over clutter everything or over complicate things.”

“We had a great team with James Ford and Marty Salogni. It was in the end, just the four of us. It worked out really well. And they were on the same page with us as well, trying to almost, yeah declutter.”

The duo also revealed that they actually recorded 16 songs in total and that those four tracks that didn’t make it are now “in the vault”, a rare occurrence for the band, says Martin Gore, the band’s lead songwriter.

“It was very difficult to actually choose the 12 that made it,” he said. “So we have these four, which is very unlike us, in a very, very small vault. Which were finished and mixed and everything. They’re all ready to go. We don’t often have anything in the vault. Trust me.”

Elsewhere, Gore also reflected on the group’s enduring — and evolving — legacy after spending more than forty years in the industry, saying “I mean, we could easily, if we wanted to just not put out music anymore and just go out and play the hits, but that’s not what we’re about.”


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