Depeche Mode Lift Angel

Synth-pop pioneers return with fourteenth album

July 6, 2005 12:00 AM ET

Depeche Mode will mark their twenty-fifth year together with the release of their fourteenth album, Playing the Angel, in October. "We can be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame next year," guitarist Andy Fletcher says with a grin.

Produced by Ben Hiller (Blur, Doves), the record features the band's classic blend of moody synth-pop beats, heavy guitar riffs and dark lyrics. "There's a really strong DNA in our band," says Fletcher. "We almost can't help sounding like ourselves -- which is a good thing."

"We were in the studio," recalls frontman Dave Gahan, "and [Mute Records head] Daniel Miller came in and said, 'Oh, what's this album about then, the usual pain and suffering?' That's kind of our m.o."

On Playing the Angel, Gahan -- who released his debut solo album, Paper Monsters, in 2003 -- shares songwriting credits for the first time, territory traditionally reserved for keyboardist Martin Gore. "I was like, 'I'm not interested in doing this album unless I get to write songs,'" Gahan says. "So Martin and I talked about it. I think it caused a bit of competition in the band, which is healthy." Three of Gahan's songs will be included on the album.

Among his contributions is the ballad "Precious." "It's about what's important," says Gahan, who famously battled with drugs and depression in the past, "and seeing life through the eyes of my children."

Depeche Mode will launch a world tour in support of Playing the Angel in October.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories


The Pack | 2006

Berkeley, California rappers the Pack made their footwear choice clear in 2006 with the song "Vans." The track caught the attention of Too $hort, who signed them to his imprint. MTV refused to play the video for the song, though, claiming it was essentially a commercial for the product. Rapper Lil' B disagreed. "I didn’t know nobody [at] Vans," he said. "I was just a rapper who wore Vans." Even without MTV's support, Lil' B recognized the impact of the track. "God blessed me with such a revolutionary song… People around my age know who really started a lot of the dressing people are into now."

More Song Stories entries »