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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Music for the Masses

Depeche Mode

1987

Wikipedia

Music for the Masses

Rating

3.32

Votes

3725

Reviews

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1

Oh, boy. Here we go, again. Crappy 80s synths. Hideous echoey drums emphasizing the backbeat. Inconsequential melodies and song structures. We don't even have the saving grace of interesting rhythms or song lyrics. This is self-serious, humorless tripe, the dullest of dull pop. It's not even danceable. It makes me want to curl up and die. Not even the moderately original album closer Pimpf, with it operatic vocals, comes close to redeeming this dreadful album. 1 star out of 5 and only because I can't give it less. I'm beginning to have my doubts about the curators of this list.

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3

Contrairement à l'avis totalement à côté de la plaque de mon compère elrodriguez, je n'ai pas été subjugué par cet album.

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5

I’m not sure I know why but this album just ticked every box for me. Dark, moody synthesizers, driving beats, interesting multipart harmonies, it all just works. I enjoyed this way more than I was expecting to.

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5

This is my first time hearing Depeche Mode and I must say that I loved this album. It is brooding and driving with interesting instrumentation and song construction. There's an expansiveness to this music that I really enjoy. British New Wave is quickly becoming a favorite of mine.

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4

I got into Depeche Mode after doing an episode of "my one track mind" and I really enjoy most of their material. This album is no exception. They sound like a link between Kraftwerk and Nine Inch Nails at times. Sucks that some of the track transitions seem to get flubbed by awkward pauses in-between songs on spotify (or maybe it's just my settings)? I love the 3 song run at the beginning of the album best. Listened to the 2006 remaster w/ bonus tracks.

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4

1. thought the 1st track was like a cute platonic friendship type thing, nope-- drugs lol. 2. good i think, i forgot, need another listen. 3. STRANGELOVE SLAPS. 4. sacred also a bop. imma mishun-airyyy 5. good, lotta drama. lyrics hmm, needa re-listen. 6. ooooooh. 7. SEXY. 8. also good, eerie, needa another listen tho. 9. bop. nothaaaaang 10. spooky piano/orchestra/choir instrumental, me likey!!! DELUXE 11. MORE SPOOKY-MOODY PIANO & other sounds, I LOVE. 12. bop. periodt. i could dance to this 13. it's aight, not a fave. 14. more moody piano--hell YEAH. more of a calm vibe this time. still got drama. 15. it's moonlight sonata, c'mon. gorgeousness. overall thoughts: on first listen I'd give the album a 4/5. i think with more listens it'll become more perfect to me. i love the eerie vibe of it all, some bops here and there. def got tracks I can come back to which is poifect.

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3

Somewhere between New Order and Pet Shop Boys. Not as exciting, funny, or danceable as them, but roughly a hundred times better than I expected. Fey, melodramatic, and infectious.

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2

Depressed Mode

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1

Some days this project is enjoyable. This was not one of those days.

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5

2/16 "Relocate to Fresno bumpin' Depeche Mode in the enzo..." Standout Tracks: Strangelove, Behind the Wheel, Pimpf, Agent Orange, Pleasure Little Treasure, Route 66, Stjarna

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5

I feel like this is the sweet spot for Depeche Mode's music. It is moving past the poppier sound and headed more towards brooding. An amazing album.

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5

ufff que viaje

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5

Me ha gustado bastante. Mejor que Violator.

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5

Hhh

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5

Solid DM album

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5

Unreal album, brings me back to my youth.

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5

Brilliant

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5

Bombastische muziek als deze kan ik wel smaken. Het volume ging duidelijk omhoog hoe verder ik kwam in het album, en dan moest 'Pimpf' nog komen: Wat een knaller die compleet in contrast staat met de rest van het album!

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5

An eternal classic

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5

better than I thought - probably a 4.5 but I'm rounding up for the surprise. Very cool early electronic.industrial stuff!

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5

Хороший потом Великой группы!

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5

No és perfecte, perquè cap al final de la segona cara comença a baixar el nivell, però els temes que sí ho són, que es són molts, eleven el nivell del disc per sobre del 90% de la producció musical de la década. A 'Violator' es van refinar definitivament com a compositors, però aquí els agafa en el seu millor moment d'inspiració, culminant una ratxa de sis discos en trajectòria ascendent (començant ja el primer d'ells des de molt a dalt!)

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5

Knew a couple of tracks - lots of good stuff on this. 1st one to make 3 listens by day 2.

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5

Rating: 9/10 Best songs: Never let me down again, The things you said, Strangelove, Sacred, Behind the wheel

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5

This is one of the biggest loves of all time! Unparalleled, gets to the bones..

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5

det er så godt for sin tid!!

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5

Depeche Mode knows that if you're going to use "again" to rhyme with a word ending in an "ane" sound, you need to pronounce it "a-GANE". I'd be tempted to give it five stars just for not cocking it up like everybody else. Thankfully the album is also very good.

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5

This brings me back to high school

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5

one of the best albums of all time

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5

Una maravilla

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5

10/10 классика

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5

gute Synthmusik

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5

Favorite tracks: Never Let Me Down Again, Strangelove, Nothing, Agent Orange, Pleasure… Little Treasure, Route 66,

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5

This was Depeche Mode's bridge album between their more classic 80's synth period (Black Celebration) and their all time classic Violator. But from the album cover to the music, this album is both a classic and truly iconic in its own right. There is not one bad song on here. 5/5

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5

WWO, DM is my favorite band! And this album is awesome!

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5

Mass Depeche

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5

Me ha gustado bastante. Mejor que Violator.

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5

This album is great! Not my favorite Depeche Mode album, but definitely solid throughout

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5

Dead good.

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5

This was my first real introduction to DM. I love this album.

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4

Pretty good. Interesting atmosphere on a lot of the songs, and I really like the use of synths/ electronics.

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4

What does Depeche Mode mean? Cool album tho, one of those bands where I should listen to more but I never do

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4

I need to give this a second listen. I really liked a lot of it, feels very ahead of its time imo, but definitely some filler songs that I think could have been cut to keep the runtime down. Like, you don’t need the instrumentals or the moonlight sonata on there. Very harrowing, unique vocals, great synths, very atmospheric.

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4

Deler er sgu god elektro-pop. Fede hits og lækre rytmer. Har dog et par meget lange rene instrumentelle numre som er lidt ligegyldige. Men starter rigtigt godt

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4

Their sound is very... sexual, for lack of a better term.

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4

Man, Depeche Mode. IMO, one of the most under-appreciated bands of the millennial/x generation. It has all of the sound that you'd expect us 'youngins' to like. It's my goal to listen to more of them. I love this album. Great to work to.

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4

Tja, äh - ich finde das gut, worüber ich ein ganz klein wenig überrascht bin! DM gehörten in den 80ern und 90ern nicht unbedingt zu meinen Favoriten, obwohl ich Personal Jesus und Enjoy the Silence von der Violator auch immer schon ganz groß fand. Vorher nie ein Album von denen durchgehört.

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4

Classic. solid listening if you are in the mood.

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4

Wasn't looking forward to it, but was surprisingly good. Lots of catchy stuff.

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4

7,6

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4

Depeche Mode when they started to get REALLY big. Personally I prefer Violator, but this is a solid listen. Dark synth-pop that filled stadiums all around the world. I could come back to this one. Favorite song: Sacred Least favorite song: Behind The Wheel

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4

Always good

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4

It’s great but a bit sad.

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4

Incredible

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4

Great

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4

Stylistically/conceptually/artistically wonderful. Not easy listening.

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4

Hah hah, yes! Moody, gothy synthy not-pop. Enjoyed this a lot. Fave track - "Behind the Wheel", maybe? "Never Let Me Down Again" was great, and I enjoyed the weirdness of "Pimpf", too...

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4

its depeche mode

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4

3.7* some good songs but not my style. very 80s sounding but i guess that makes sense for an album that came out in 1987

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4

I had both the CD and the cassette. Definitely listened to this every week. Now?

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4

Some tracks stronger than others (not a fan of the instrumentals) but overall a really enjoyable listen

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4

Que nostalgia, algunos temas épicos pero otros nada, en todo caso agradable de escuchar

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4

That voice, that mood

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4

Always love Depeche Mode

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4

Great

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4

Depeche Mode innit

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4

I am a big fan of Depeche Mode, and this album was quite good.

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4

Depeche Mode are masters of their instruments, crafting synth lines and electronic beats that are meant for each other, as if they were destined to come together in perfect darkness. The songs here are just so incredibly well-composed, it's difficult to not enjoy them. The atmosphere built into these songs are also strong and compelling. Overall great album.

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4

Clàssic, gutazo

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4

- Very good sounds and experimental techniques. The album is surreal and sounds melanchoholic and sad, but at the same time, gives a creepy atmosphere of progresive rock.

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4

Not as dark as Violator but still an epic album.

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4

¡No sabía que podía esperar esto de Depeche Mode! Un disco de decadencia en un momento oscuro y de entregarse a otras personas (o a la droga) como evasión ante una amenaza permanente. Me ha gustado mucho. Mucho. La canción, "Behind the Wheel"

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4

Nice

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4

Ich muss zugeben, dass ich Depeche in diesem Kontext anders wahrnehme als bisher. Da habe ich was gutzumachen

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4

I already liked Depeche Mode so I was quite excited to listen to this all the way through! the album was a really good and very synthy album and the songs had decent variety in overall mood

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4

A true classic. Depeche Mode own their sound not unlike how the Beatles or Queen own theirs. Being Depeche Mode though, this album is weird, and though I may love it for it, there are albums that are more well-rounded. Still loved it though.

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4

Not my favourite Depeche Mode album but still excellent. Strangelove is too good

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4

Great album. Love Depeche mode

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4

I love Depeche mode and loved this album

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4

There seems to be a heavy Kraftwerk influence which I like. The front half of the album is filled with bangers, and the back half is filled with a whole lot of nothing. Highlights: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6.

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4

Great Album!

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4

I have always had trouble getting into Depeche Mode, but I’m glad I gave this a shot. It had some r really strong moments

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4

the breathing at the beginning of 'i want you now' is one of the worst things i've ever heard. everything else has been marvelous so far. i loved Pimpf especially. the following track was instrumental too i think? i kinda zoned out from that point onwards, didn't even realize when it ended lol. but i enjoyed myself a lot.

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4

There are some interesting sounds on here, pretty similar to the The Cure album we had earlier. My main gripes are that it's slow and that the song I Want You Now exists. 7

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4

8/10. I quite liked a few tracks from this, but as an album it has some boring stretches. The intro to "I Want You Now" just sounds like an overdramatic person inflating a paddleboard. And "Pleasure, Little Treasure" is a bonus track, but it was a lot more fun than most of the album. I can't quite decide if I like the Route 66 cover, but the occasional panting in the background does not help it out.

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4

Really good, probably a 4.75. Very introspective, not commercial

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4

Right of the bat - pretty fucking good. Fuck I love the 80s I like the darker turn it takes, reminds me of the dark synth era of retrosynthwave, and I like that alot. I didn't really love any of the tracks, but I love the atmosphere and style that I'll almost give it a five. It's up there. 4.5 But damn what an ugly album cover, it reminds me of Massive Attack - Blue Lines, and damn that light brown color is so sad to look at - Maybe I'll learn to love it

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4

Good

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4

Compliqué de me consacrer aux reviews en ce moment, étant donné que je suis de retour au bureau, et que je me vois mal rédiger de somptueuses reviews au milieu de l'open space pour les lecteurs ingrats que vous êtes (1 semaine après notre appel, toujours aucune review sur l'album de MC Solaar mentionnant le code secret!).

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4

I honestly kinda like it. It's so clearly 80s, but I don't consider that a bad thing. This is sitting in your room after school, curtains closed, music up, and trying to work up the urge to kiss the cute goth girl you managed to convince to come over.

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4

Spook synth with lots of non-commercial stuff on purpose according to the Wikipedia article. Plus 1 star for naming it music for the masses when the intent was the opposite

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4

A solid album. One of the problems I have with Depeche Mode is not that it’s good, but that it makes me feel depressed. I guess good music makes you feel so that’s a win? But anyways, the songwriting is here, dark and mysterious- Nothing seems like it would be the only “radio hit” off the album. Nevertheless, it’s good- in all it’s spooky ambience- it kinda trails off tho from time to time. Otherwise, it’s really good. Solid 4

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4

Music for the Masses is obviously ironically named. Depeche Mode would not have been classified as mainstream in any sense of the word. It is moody and dark, but also decidedly 80s in feel. Overall a great listen and one I'd venture back into. Best: Never Let Me Down Again; Little 15 Worst: Pimpf

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4

Some weird stuff on here but I can't resist Dave Gahan's voice and those moody, sexy synths!

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4

It's a really solid album

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4

For me, Depeche Mode is "Just Can't Get Enough", "Personal Jesus" and the time in the late 80s when a reporter on an American entertainment show unironically called them "America's favourite rock 'n' roll band". Their Music for the Masses phase is interesting. It's an edgier sound and makes me think a little of Joy Division. "I Want You Now" was the most memorable track, with its disturbing respiratory sounds mixed with the loving but dark lyrics. It feels like a good stage in the creative life of la Mode.

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4

Pretty good album, I love the classical twist at the end of it. Lots of fun instrumentals

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4

Some good new wave and an evolution for Depeche Mode

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4

Fantastic dark synth. A little samey after a while though.

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4

Interesting album, more in depth that I thought.

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4

This lives up to its title. Typical dark, broody synths, but also melodic and poppy. More catchy and less heavy on the vibe compared to Violater, which this album preceded and is also on this list. I'm coming to the conclusion that Depeche Mode are pretty great. 4/5.

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4

It’s that modern indie sound. But from the 80s!

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4

DM are the peak synth-pop to come out of the 80s/90s. This album is one of their finest - 3.5/4

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4

Atmosphärisch, dense und kalt, mir aber nach einer Weile etwas monoton

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4

7/10

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4

I appreciate Depeche Mode. There's a difference between listening to a song that someone "wrote" and a song that was "composed" - the latter being a much more impressive feat in my mind. Granted, I find the former more entertaining to listen to. This kind of music just always feels like it's missing something (which is a me problem, not the fault of those who record in this genre). It needs a visual element. I always feel like I should also be watching an intense scene in a movie, or a video game cut scene, or a ballet or something. I don't know if that makes sense. At the end of the day, Depeche Mode is really good at something I don't really understand.

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4

I love the sound of this record. Love those synths. I can hear the influence of the arpeggiated piano chords on The Smashing Pumpkins' "Eye" and the record's broader influence on the Pumpkins' subsequent (to "Eye") Adore LP. I'm thankful for that influence. I think the influence here on another band I love - The Cocteau Twins - can't be understated. It is what made CT more than another guitar-based shoegaze band (see Ride's "Nowhere.") On its own, and forgetting the influence it had, this record is great as well. Within it's relatively narrow scope of sounds, it has a lot of diversity from song to song. I especially like "The Things You Said." Giving this a solid 4. It brings together the great sounds from Kraftwerk, adds a pop sheen, and I like that a lot.

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4

It's somewhat dark and brooding with just the right amount of oppressiveness and then a bunch of catchy hooks mixed in. I really liked this one and listened to it twice in a row. However, the only song that really stood out was Pimpf for being overly dramatic and not really fitting the rest of the album.

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4

Definetly interesting

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4

80,s synth pop mooi melodieus

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4

I had a really good time listening to this record! I already knew some Depeche Mode songs, but I had never heard any of the tracks off of this album before so it was completely fresh. I found this very innovative even for as late as 1987, and I was never bored listening through the entire album even though some songs sounded pretty similar. I know that Depeche Mode was a major influence on one of my favorite modern bands, CHVRCHES, and I can tell that a lot of their stuff is going for a similar tone and vibe that this collection of songs offers. Outside of this connection I made, I was pleasantly surprised to hear some Moody Blues-like lead vocals and slower tracks which is something I am always down for. This was very apparent on the track 'I Want You Now' which I have added to my Starred list. Overall, I definitely liked this one and am interested to dive deeper into this band's catalog. 3.5/5.

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4

80s synthy electronic. playfully catchy with a darker center

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4

Surprisingly cool

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4

Stirring.

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4

Heavier sound than their early albums. Will develop even further in their next album, violator.

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4

This is a great album, one of Depeche Mode’s best. It’s probably the most musically cohesive of all the albums they had done to that point, with a dark, sensual and slightly menacing vibe. There are several straight up synth classics on here which make it a must listen, but had they dropped a couple of songs, it would have been a tighter album. Fave Songs: Never Let Me Down Again, Little 15, Behind the Wheel, Nothing, Pimpf, The Things You Said

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4

4/5. Too Nasal, good tunes doe

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4

This felt refreshingly different compared to some recent listens, perhaps influencing an upgrade to 4 from what may have been a 3 star rating. But this is really quite relistenable for me.

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4

Lo amé, primer disco entero que escucho de DM, a la altura de sus hits aunque por momentos se pone demasiado euro victoriano medieval.

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4

This sounds more like Depeche Mode than Depeche Mode does. Appreciated listening to an album so I could appreciate the musical talent, but it's a bit one dimensional

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4

Depeche Mode klinkt wel lekker. Heerlijke 80s sound. Misschien niet het beste album ter wereld, en ook niet heel veel topnummers, maar het hele album is wel goed te luisteren. ****

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4

I never thought I liked Depeche Mode and was not looking forward to this...but I gotta say I enjoyed this album.

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4

Big fan. Been A LONG TIME since I listened to this entire album and I specifically recall a friend in high school who loved Depeche Mode which somehow led me to listening to the Pixies. I think this is an album that I’ll return to soon and play in the background while getting a few things done.

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4

What every 80s synth driven band with should've sounded like. Verging on a masterpiece.

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4

All synthpop should sound like a horror movie

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4

I liked this a lot!

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4

I was uncertain at the start, but the album really picked up with Strange love and I was hooked. I really liked the spooky vibes, a great mix of eerie synth sounds and catchy bops.

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4

Genre: Synthpop 4/5 Dark, ambient, and emotional, Music for the Masses is one of Depeche Mode's best albums, hitting all of the right buttons, making this one of my favorite pop albums from this decade. Eschewing new wave's more eclectic shortcomings, and opting instead for a brooding, synth-heavy production style that does a great job highlighting the passionate lead vocals from Dave Gahan, as well as forming a great basis for some solid synthpop arrangements, this album is a great example of what the 80s did well, but not something they did this well that often. The entire first side, including tracks like Never Let Me Down Again and Sacred, is tremendously, dark, almost sinister pop music. As the album continues, Depeche Mode continues to attack the senses with harsh synth leads, electronic drum fills, and loud, passionate choruses, a formula that only these guys pulled off as well as they did. Tears for Fears tried their best, but never quite reached this. Shoutout to the entire mid-aught's rock movement, which borrows from this group more than almost any other (I'm looking at you, AFI).

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4

Other than it’s dance-y music I have no clue… The album starts off with never let me down again, it’s got a brilliant rhythm to it but the lyrics aren’t the best and I’am not sure on the autotune on the chorus but it doesn’t effect it much. The things you said is a slightly slower song and it works really well, still not a fan of the vocals though but I guess this kinda music isn’t meant to be analysed that way. Strangelove has a great build up with the sounds working so good together and lyrically it seems the bands best so yeah this is a favourite! Sacred has this much slower “creepy” sound at the start until exploding into this really cool slower dance song with some nice sounds . There’s something really unsettling about little 15 for me. My favourite bit has to be the chorus as those exploding drums alongside the strings works perfectly. It’s also got interesting lyrics and I’am so surprised it was a single. Starting off side two it’s behind the wheel it takes it’s time to really get into it but once it starts it’s cool. The vocal performance in this song it’s much more layered on than the others which makes it the best as it really suits the song. I can appreciate I want you now for trying something new with the instrumentation but to put it lightly it’s not for me I did like the bridge/ refrain bit at the middle of the song. To have and to hold starts with this sample leading intro this menacing, sinister sound. Good song maybe needs a bit of building lyrically. Now the penultimate cut nothing, it sounds a lot more like a single than behind the wheel and little 15 (it’s not better than those two) but the chorus is this songs best part a temporary release of energy. The album closes with pimpf an instrumental track its got this creepy feel to it. It’s probably my least favourite but that’s just cause I feel lyrics really carry a song. And there’s a bonus track…eh. Yeah good album much better in the instrumental department but still works lyrically in most places!

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4

The challenge is making me realise how much I love Depeche Mode. I have really neglected them in the past but wow what an amazing body of work.

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4

Great album, these guys were the bomb in the 80s

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3

Another Depeche mode album... ok buddy. The world doesn't need to listen to this much new wave, it just doesn't. Fuck off. I've always been skeptical of this band anyway, its fans are always the sort of people that think the lyrics are inspired by great philosophers etc. That end of the music fan spectrum is full of aspies who love this shit. No doubt if I searched I'd pretty quickly find nerds commenting on "the intersectionality of Hegelian tradition reflecting the human condition" on half the tracks here. This album is ok tbh, catchy enough and it's better than the last Depeche mode album I had (2 days ago). Fair bit darker, almost sisters of mercy dark. So it gets points for that. Truth be told this album IS worthy, it's just the other one that wasn't really. 3/5.

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3

Very campy.

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3

1987. Key Songs: Never Let Me Down Again, Strangelove

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3

Plain

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3

There are a couple of songs that don't sound like Depeche Mode songs. Those are the best ones. Best track: Pimpf

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3

I enjoyed it but I think I’m gay now.

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3

I was expecting to like this more than I did. The first time listening through a whole LP of theirs in a while, if ever.

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3

-Very futuristic sounding even now. -Some songs kinda repetitive. -Last half of album went further into a concept album style.

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3

Spannend. Gut zum Coden. Tatsächlich habe ich gar nicht gemerkt wie schnell das Album durch war.

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3

ok

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3

Super bizarre record. I actually like the Depeche Mode, but this one had like— a piano sonata? A cover of Route 66? Weird background cinematic jams? I give it 3 stars just for weirdness

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3

ok electronic album. A must listen to?

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3

Lettere ens-tonigt.

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3

Enjoyable album very Castlevania feel especially early on. Some classic 80s sounds, very common for the time. Good but not great, some songs are a bit repetitive. 3.5

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3

This was ok, probably not going to come back to it ever though

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3

Depeche Mode has such an interesting sound they could be reading the newspaper and it would slap. Unfortunately this album had a few pieces that seemed off, but overall a good listening experience

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3

not totally sure this was for me. maybe i'm not a synth gal? but glad i listened i suppose. oh also, wish it had wayyyyy fewer references to little girls...

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3

Tengo conocidos una generación arriba de la nuestra y creo que no hay uno solo de ellos a los que no les guste Depeche, ese sector fueron darkis fresas sin duda. Es un sonido que me agrada bastante, aunque no se que diablos hace ahí claro de luna.

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3

pimpf sounds like it could fit in a Castlevania game - C

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3

I like Depeche Mode, but I do not love them. I think the vocals are too naked/clean/straight compared to the darkness of the sound for my taste. I don't think this is their strongest album. Just felt a little too dated, very 80s, a little cheesy at parts. I like the synths though! I have heard "Behind the Wheel" before, prob one of the standouts. Nice driving beat. Also heard "Nothing" before too. Really don't like "I Want You Now", those breaths are a biiiit much. Pimpf is sooo overdramatic. "Agent Orange" was nice atmosphere. Kinda reminds me of a jam of ours without lyrics. "Pleasure, Little Treasure" is kinda fun. I swayed my shoulders in a goofy way. Pretty sure I've heard "Route 66". Had to look it up, but it's a cover. I'm guessing I'm getting into B-sides or something now. "Stjarna" reminds me of like, FF7 music or something. I can't believe they put a cover of Moonlight Sonata on here. Ballsy, but I am not a fan of something that popular being on an album as a cover unless it's a piano-focused album/cover album.

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3

Buen disco.

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3

4 3 5 3.9 3 2 1 3 3 3

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3

Never heard of it before. Songs not familiar. Definitely enjoyable but not my jam on a whole.

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3

Kind of dark tone overall. Some of it weirdly reminded me of Pink Floyd The Wall.

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3

great singles, but albums can be a slog.

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3

another interesting album, had a cool sound and some cool tracks, "never let me down again" and "strangelove" were highlights

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3

Eh

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3

I’m not a huge 80s music guy. It just sounds too old. This reminds me of the Smiths and The cure

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3

Muy lejos de su mejor nivel

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3

for many years I believed I was a Depeche Mode fan (i really like the hits) but I cannot stand any of their records for its whole length

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3

It was fine, I guess. I've really liked Depeche Mode very much. This was exactly what I thought it would be.

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3

Electrónica. Bastante más interesante de lo esperado.

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3

Electronic not my cup of tea

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3

Ich war mal zufällig auf einem Depeche Mode Konzert und konnte den ganzen Fan-Wahnsinn spätestens nach der Performance von NLMDA voll nachvollziehen und war auch infiziert. Aber über die ganze Albumlänge komme ich mit der Euphorie heute nicht mehr hin.

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3

Good, partly very good but not great

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3

Nunca me gustó pero nunca le di una oportunidad. Mejor de lo esperado

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3

3.8 + Love some Depeche Mode, and some of their best output is here (e.g. "Never Let Me Down Again", "Little 15"). There are also some strange asides ("Pimpf", "I Want You Now", "Agent Orange") where the band experiments with an expanded soundscape. Given the simplicity in the compositions, the almost brute force in the synthesized parts, tracks work best when they're focused around a composed song with standard structure (Verse-Chorus-Verse...). The experimental tracks sometimes sound ham-fisted and pretentious.

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3

Not bad but not my cup of tea

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3

Den er ok ig

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3

It helps with hindsight hearing their evolution. I got as far as track 7 before moving on.

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3

Enjoyed this. Quite like a bit of Depeche Mode. A shame none of their big hits were on this but was still a good listen.

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3

A bit Samey but not bad

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3

I liked this more than I thought I would. As an album, I would happily listen again. No massive standout tracks at the moment but enjoyable.

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3

Enough enjoyable songs outweigh the less interesting. I'd be happy to listen to it again 3*

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3

Pero por qué me aparece toda la electrónica junta 🙃, aunque no me disgusta, es un poco como rock alternativo.

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3

Gloomy stadium naval gazing. Best Tracks: Never Let Me Down Again, Strangelove, Behind The Wheel

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3

Good alternative

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3

Quite repetitive and not particularly memorable. Better was to come.

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3

Some obvious highlights on here - such as the opener- this is an album that is brilliant in places but a bit patchy overall. Apparently the album title was meant to be ironic, ironically the irony is that this was indeed the album that hinted at the stadiums Depeche Mode would soon be filling.

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3

dark and somewhat groovy, maybe worth a revisit

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3

Its alright, like most 80s synth pop its a bit limp wristed, lacking depth and excitement.

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3

boring af

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3

meh

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3

Yeah it was alright!

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3

Nicht so schlecht wie ich über Jahrzehnte proklamiert habe...

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3

Interesting

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3

Classic, not for me

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3

Pretty monotonous. Not a bad listen though.

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3

Would've been my jam if I was in my 20s in the 80s

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3

Strong 3, almost a 4. A few low points but some great tracks, I enjoy the overall style/sound: it's pretty distinctive

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3

It's not relaxing listening but it's pretty enjoyable music to mix it up once in a while. 2.5 from me

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3

zzz

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3

They’re one of my dads favorite bands so I’m pretty familiar with them. I was real excited to listen to this one. Though the hits aren’t really on it I did quite enjoy it for what it is.

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3

Good album not my favorite from the band.

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3

Decent but nothing more.

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3

Another band I wanted no part of during the late-80s; "don't even show me any moody synth-pop!" So... as has been the case in this exercise, I was actually excited to get it today and give it a re-listen. Right off the bat it's both a lot of what I expected and I ... kind of like it? My teen-filter never let me like Dave Gahan's voice at all but it's perfect for this music and the more I listen the more I like it. To be critical, the songwriting as a whole is fairly limited - there is a sameness to the songs once I start listening. But keeping positive, to me the band's strength is more in invoking a gloomy and dark mood instead which in an odd way is not necessarily a bad thing; almost like all these minor-key synth songs begin to wash over you and create more like a 45 minute experience rather than crafting quality "songs". I'm not sure I'd ever have strong cravings for this specifically, mostly because of the lack of great (or good?) songs... but if someone (including me) says "i'm feeling emo/sad and need to be alone for a while" I know the right album to put on. 5/10 3 stars

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3

I actually really liked this album I thought it was nice and spooky and different than any other album i’ve ever listened to if this was out of 10 I would probably give it seven but four is too high but I did really enjoy this album

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3

When it comes to British New Wave, Depeche Mode is certainly another one of the bands on this list.

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3

This is listenable but pretty borning.

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3

Depeche Mode is certainly not for everybody, and even me in particular moments of time. This moody, brooding, dark sound of euphoric synthesizers and keyboards makes for great atmosphere music, and can be a really cool experience just listening in the dark or with mood lighting if you want to create your own little at-home show. Everyone other song on this album is a hit for me, and not including the 2006 Remastered bonus tracks, this is a pretty front heavy album. I honestly don't know enough about the band to put this up against any of their other works, but from my understanding this is a more mature album to leave for later if you want to get into them. I'll certainly revisit it once I do. Favorite Song: Never Let Me Down Again Honorable Mention: Behind the Wheel Least Favorite: Nothing

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3

I’m surprised that none of the half dozen or so songs that I associate with Depeche Mode have shown up on this album. I love the lead off track plus some of the ambient instrumentals that end the album like Pimpf and the remixes tacked on after are punchier and less dated than the rest of the material. The rest I find kind of gloomy and plodding. The vocalist doesn't really have a good voice for that type of music, they should have borrowed Peter Murphy from Bauhaus. I’ll round my score up based on Never Let Me Down Again.

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3

Never Let Me Down AgainBehind the Wheel Nothing I guess I liked Strangelove back in the day but it is so overplayed it's hard to stomach.  For the rest I could attribute not really  liking them to the songs not aging well but this might just be an excuse. I liked these guys enough back in the day to buy their first album. tbh, I don't think I listened to it too much since I only liked a few songs. Sounds familiar. Anyway, liking  three songs gets a 3.  

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3

Nothing special. Behind the wheel and Route 66 are decent. The rest is unremarkable, no appeal for me. Can't give 2.5 stars. Flipping a coin between 2 and 3.

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3

The light side and prelude to Violator, paling in comparison. The worst intervals are concentrated on the A-side; The rest lacks the coherence of the followup but stretches toward it and functions as good pop. To Have And To Hold justifies the listen almost by itself, which betrays my sympathies for less positive electronics.

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3

один из лучших их Альбомов у них

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3

Used to love this

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3

Pretty good example of 80s dark synth work

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3

New wave elektronisk 80’er, hypnotiserende, dystrest, medrivende

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3

Jamen godt album. Til tider lidt kedeligt. Til tider rigtig godt!

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3

It was fine. Never listened to much Depeche Mode other than the singles, and this was pretty much what I expected.

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3

Coooool mais un peu long sur la fin

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3

I am a fan of the Depeche Mode albums that follow this (Violater and Songs of Faith and Devotion), which are a bit darker, rockier, and noisy than their early records. The greater inclusion of guitar, the more industrial sound design (more noise and distorition), and greater reliance on pentatonic harmonies (ironically, simpler harmonically than their earlier material) is more to my taste. While familiar with their singles, I had not given earlier albums much attention. It was a real pleasure to spend some time with this album in full. David Bascombe, fresh off producing Tears for Fears and working with DM for the first time, brings a big sound and a penchant for experimenting than is enjoyable. Watching the doco on this album, he was clearly influenced by minimalist composers lie Glass and Reich, which is a bit of a niche sensibility that appeals to me greatly. I really enjoyed this, although not to the same degree as the albums mentioned above. Would buy (albeit for cheap).

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3

I used to work alongside an obsessive Depeche Mode fan. She would constantly bleat on about her devotion and mainly because of this I couldn't be less interested in the band

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3

Reminds of Brian Eno

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3

I'm fond of the 1980s British synthpop sound, but feel like lots of the bands were singles-driven. Maybe I'm wrong. Either way, this record shows Depeche Mode in album mode. It's pretty consistent and well paced. The singer has a very distinctive voice, but hardly any variation - after about half the record, it does begin to seem like the songs blur into one. Overall, it's good but inessential to me. 3.5*

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3

Great band but not exactly what Id like.

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3

Easy listening and neat sounds. Not entirely my jam genre-wise, but pleasant overall.

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3

I'm going to tell my kids that "Agent Orange" is about Trump. I'm joking. I already told my kids that "Agent Orange" is about Trump and these fellas were just able to see into a dark future. I might also have thrown in how Trump played "Agent Orange" whenever he was getting a golden shower. It certainly sounds plausible. This album is fine, Depeche Mode is fine. A little overrated? Sure, and I'll save my rant for how the hell they're in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame for another day. Do I prefer some love versions of Depeche Mode songs? Yes, surprisingly. I wish my take on "Agent Orange" (a pretty forgettable instrumental that sounds like it was added at the last minute as filler) was true. It would at least show that these guys have a sense of humor.

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3

80s synth pop, very samey, extra star for little 15 which I LOVED!

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3

Good, but a bit too ominous for regular listening.

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3

I dig it

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3

I have heard many Depeche Mode songs MULTIPLE times. Depeche Mode has never really caught on with me. Perhaps there were so many strong fans around me, and DM had enough radio play that I never had to listen to much of their music of my own choice. I think I didn't find out about some alternative bands (The Cure, The Smiths, Echo and the Bunnymen, etc.) and later new wave artists until later because the local alternative radio station played so much Depeche Mode. This album sits firmly on the darker side of Depeche Mode's work, a good distance away from the pop-ish new wave of their early work. The dark, broody mood of DM still keeps me from fully enjoying this album. "Strangelove" got the highest marks from me for an individual track.

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3

Pretty good. 7/10

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3

Yep, that’s Depeche Mode

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3

Depeche Mode... A long time after Vince Clarke left, but before Violator. Hm. OK. Why pick this Depeche Mode? They were pioneers. They changed (well, Vince Clarke did) music with Speak and Spell. They changed it again with Violator, sans Clarke. This album? Say what? Hell. Even Songs of Faith and Devotion was bigger, better and differenter. The album ain't bad - not by a long stretch. But I'd simply not include it given objectively and subjectively better albums from them.

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3

Emotional and contemplative

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Not much of an 80s electronic new wave kinda guy. But this was alright. I thought if the album was like the first and third track I was going to love it. Then there was some wack shit in the second half... So it balances out.

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3

A solid album, but not their best.

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3

High three.

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3

My first time listening to Depeche Mode (apart from the classics). The album is good, but it does have some weird songs.

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3

The album has that 80s sound. It was an alright album. I did not skip any of the songs but I wouldn't pick this album to listen to again.

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3

Very dark and eerie

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3

While the songs that are good are VERY good, most don't really do much for me. Also it gets pretty repetitive at times. There's only so much Depeche Mode i can listen to in one sitting. Still a solid synthpop album, but feels a bit dated.

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3

Good, but Violator is just this album but better in every single way so I don't really see the need to have this on the list. I still enjoyed it though. "Strangelove" slaps so much god damn, that's a song that gets stuck in your head in the middle of the night while you're trying to fall sleep. I had "Architecture & Morality", a very similar album, just a few days ago. What's up with albums from this era having an album cover of a random .jpeg and some text on a plain background?

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3

80s synth electronic. Sometimes it worked.

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3

Legalzinho. Melhores músicas: Never Let me Down again e Strangelove

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3

Pretty essential, they're nearly there re-inventing themselves from synthpoppers to epic synthpopper gloom gothers. Three stellar singles and a strong set of album tracks.

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3

Pop electrónico con sintetizadores. Ni fu ni fa.

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3

3.5

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3

The odd career arc to go from shy and fey and suffering synth types to the club music equivalent of arena rockers never made sense. This seems a reach to be taken more seriously by being less danceable, but the hooks get a little mechanistic and blocky. “Nothing” and “Agent Orange” are engaging, but “Route 66” and the “Moonlight Sonata” are utterly unconvincing, not even as filler.

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3

Somewhat appropriately, my love for this album has faded. At one time I thought it to be much more enjoyable than I do now, and while I do still recognize value in it, my enjoyment of it is nowhere near that of years past.

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3

Cool dark vibes Favorite was Pimpf

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3

Some great singles but not the best Depeche Mode

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2

Ei ole mun pala kakkua

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2

meh, not for me

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2

80s drivel in my personal honest opinion. But I guess it had some merit.

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2

very very 80's. I quite liked some of it and didnt like a lot of it

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80s synth pop/rock that's not doing a whole lot for me. This might be the first album that I'm struggling to finish.

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2

Did not enjoy. Weirdly dark but not in an interesting way

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2

Not for me.

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2

Se me hace música muy complicada que viene cargada de un sentimiento artificial de "oscuridad" y "sexualidad" que se vuelve hostigante. Las canciones del disco son, o soundtrack de una orgía diabólica y están a punto de ponerte un cogidón, o un músico de garage jugando con el sintetizador y viendo qué pasa si mueve todas las palancas a la vez. Ah, y Claro de Luna… Y luego está Route 66, que me da la impresión que alguien les dijo "oigan, bájenle a lo sexual del disco" y entonces se inventaron esta rola que solo menciona ciudades de USA, donde por cierto no viven. Sí me queda claro que tiene su público, y conozco gente que es muy muy fan, pero curiosamente el perfil es el mismo: supersexualizado y pseudooscuro.

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2

Este disco es una mezcla entre Depeche Mode y el soundtrack de algún Final Fantasy. Conceptualmente se me hizo parecido a “The second law” de Muse (o más bien, al revés), y también me pareció curioso lo irónico del nombre, rematando con una canción de Beethoven, para que quedara bien claro. Sobre la música en si, la canción que me gustó más fue justamente Claro de Luna. Creo que soy parte de la masa.

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2

Not a fan.

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2

Meh not for me

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2

I want to like this band, but I find myself irritated by what feels like thick layers of irony. I enjoyed some songs but mostly felt annoyed throughout.

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2

Quality British electro rock, huge influence but not my cup o tea.

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2

I turned this on while I was working. And honestly nothing about it drew me to listen to it closer. Even on second pass it was just on.

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2

Dark, moody, a little a-tonal. I found this hard to listen to an enjoy. Some of the production was great though.

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Depeche Mode es quizá el grupo que más respeto me merece como impaciencia por su música tengo. Se me hace un grupo con harto talento, musicalmente en la música de synth y new wave fueron innovadores tanto en sus letras como en hacer una música un poco más sombría, aunque a veces tanto música como letras pueden sentirse que caen en eso de "tries to hard" y terminan sonando como pretensiosones o adolescente que grita mira que oscuroooo... siendo que hay música mucho más funebre en su sentir que se siente más honesta. Pareciera que en teoría me debieran gustar mucho pero a pesar del crédito que les doy esa voz y el sonsonete nunca lo he aguantado por más de dos canciones, un disco completo es demasiado. Por otro lado cuando comparo este disco con el Violator (sí, son los únicos dos que conozco) es curioso que el que se oyera más sexual es el que tiene letras más maduras y este se queda centrado en sexo todo el tiempo. No tengo mucho más que decir, siempre se me han hecho personas talentosas, con algunas canciones muy bien hechas y una gran cantidad de su obra que se oye muy repetitiva (Strangelove es en efecto muy buena, el problema es que para la canción 5 ya me hartó la voz de David Gahan).

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2

found that a bit hard to get through and annoying

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2

eh

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Meh, pero no tan meh como otros meh

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I never really got Depeche Mode. Just weird singing but I understand how they helped pioneer electronic music. 4/10.

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Enjoyed the first song, and was excited for the rest of it. However it didn’t kick on well enough, was a bit middle of the road at times. Am sure there are much better Depeche Mode albums

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Not really my vibe. A couple of decent tracks, but it was another album that kinda passed me by.

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2

It was alright 5/10

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I liked track 2, The Things You Said, but otherwise not really for me. Far too long, felt a real slog

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2

Boring.

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A bit monotonous for my liking. I prefer their brighter, poppier songs. Very 80s. Did I need to hear it before I die? Probably not.

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2

The first half was fun but it became all doom and gloom in the second half and not the fun kind of doom and gloom.

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2

Very unpleasant to listen to. First track is great though.

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Not a big fan. Might have to give it more time

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Not for me. Due to not enjoying the genre the songs blend too seamlessly to the point of feeling the same one after the other

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2

Never been the biggest Depeche Mode fan, and this... well this didn't change anything about that.

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not that great. this band definitely has better music. 2.5

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trying not to let my bias against the 80s show but I was not a big fan of this. my biggest criticism of this album is that it takes itself wayy too seriously, there's not the slightest hint of humor or personality. it wasn't without merit, and i liked the first few tracks well enough, but beyond that i just wanted it to be over. the vocal melodies were really monotonous, lyrics were trite, and the drums and synths felt kind of generic. 3/10

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From reading the reviews I see that you either love or hate Depeche Mode. Personally I find them a bit too pretentious, the brooding lyrics and the lead vocalist’s dis-embodied robotic voice is annoying. Other bands eg Kraftwerk can do electronic and not have it come off sounding so contrived and emotionless.

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2

Too instrumental, too monotone

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2

I didn't really enjoy this album, I think I liked one song. 2/5 stars.

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2

Pompous casio 80s

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Not for me. Techno is good and all and I like how the album didn't just stick to the genre. While maybe a foundational work, later bands in the same genre did it better.

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2

I think I'm not german enough to completely and immersively enjoy an album like this. I'm not sure where the german obsession with 80s music comes from, but it's a strikingly intergenerational phenomenon. Its prevalence on radio could be explained away by taking a look at the demographics of radio consumption, which I suspect would reveal a 40+ trend. Nostalgia is a strong driving force in enjoying and consuming music. None of this can explain why the youth also celebrate 80s music and 80s revivalism to the extent that they do. It feels like every second night at a studenty bar/club is an 80s/90s night. Living here I've come into contact with more music from the decade than I would ever willingly subject myself to. Suffice to say, it hasn't rubbed off on me. There must be plenty of qualities in this album that made it important at the time, but I struggle to identify them. The only song I really found myself invested in was Pimpf, but i'm unsure if this was because of the qualities of the song itself, or if it simply relief at the brief respite from the deluge of 80s synth sounds that is Music for the Masses.

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I get why it is here and I appreciate it but I don’t wanna listen to it anymore

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Lista chyba chciala pokazac jak bardzo gatunek moze sie roznic przez porownanie wczorajszego kraftwerka z dzisiejszym depeche mode, ktorzy debiutuja na liscie likowej z ich szostym albumem studyjnym music for the masses z 87, gatunek jak poprzednia pozycja synthowy pop, ale jest to calkowicie inny rodzaj muzyki, brak tu jakiegokolwiek konceptu, a jak przystalo na depeche mode brzmia jakby uciekly z radiowej audycji boomerowskiej tesknoty za latami 80, ciekawie w ogole wyglada podzial obowiazkow w zespole, cztery osoby, David Gahan zabija koty na wokalu, Martin Gore pisze dla niego teksty ktorymi zabija te koty, Alan Wilder ten tworzy caloksztalt muzyczny na ktorym koty sa mordowane i Andrew Fletcher ktory nie robi nic i odcina kupony, ciekawa sprawa, ze jako czlonek bandy nie ma zadnych creditow jako tworca, pewnie przez wczorajsze robocie synthy, ale te dzisiejsze brzmia tak nudno, a polaczone z tak wysmienicie zwyczajnym wokalem tworza mieszanke residentowosleeperowa, wyjatkiem od tej reguly bedzie otwierajacy never let me down again, jako cos swiezego, tylko po to zeby kolejne 40 minut slyszec go w 8 innych remiksach, bo praktycznie pierwsze 4 minuty definiuja brzmienie kolejnych 40, z wyjatkiem zamkyjacego traka pimpf, ktory zmienia koncepcje tworzenia radio friendli songow na rzecz kompozycji czysto instrumentalnej opartej na brzmieniach rodem z opery, dodatkowo isterowe egi nawet ma kawalek jak pol minuty ciszy po ktorym jest outro calej plyty, gdyby reszta albumu byla podobnie tworzona, to mogloby cos z tego ciekawego wyjsc, ale tak to depeche mode pozostanie dla mnie banda od personalnego jezusa, na plejke dodam wspomnianego wczesniej pimpfa

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2

Not my fave album of theirs. Some tunes were good but others dragged for me.

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2

Pretty much the same review as for the last DM album: Find the singing super annoying; the instrumentals are better and more suited for their cinematic creepy/minor key keyboard sounds. 0 Stars for album cover.

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2

Kinda boring. I can see the influence on bands I do like, but having a more animated vocalist would do wonders.

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2

mehh. 2?

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2

Disappointing.

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2

The whole of the album proper is basically just very dull samey synth-guff. Funnily enough some of the bonus tracks on the deluxe/expanded editions are much better: Route 66 is actually fun and Agent Orange is weird but kinda great background music? Still can't really rate the album as a whole though.

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2

New wave feels very hit or miss for me

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2

Just doesn't do it for me. I think I liked "Strangelove" but that might just be because I recognized it.

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2

Wel oke maar de meeste depeche mode nummers zijn niet mijn ding

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2

A mid-range 2. It sounds so miserable, without the jaunty bits that make Joy Division / The Smiths more bearable. I wouldn't say there was a standout song. Not going to listen again, but not the worst we've had.

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2

I can see the draw, but this album is not for me.

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2

Pas mon genre, je n'ai pas les outils pour apprécier. Quelques pièces accrocheuses, beaucoup de longueurs.

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2

Need to listen

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2

Startlagið geggjað en ekki nógu mikið djús á restinni.

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1

Ikinä en oo digannu enkä diggaa tämänkään jälkeen. Keskinkertasta pimputtelua ja heti ku tää masentunut angstilaulaja avaa suunsa nii alkaa vituttaa

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1

Not their best, why does it sound like funeral music the whole album?

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1

More wack 80's music.

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1

very 80s 🙄 Terrible couldnt finish. one star? 80s is not my genre and this one in particular.

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1

If youre into that, maybe okay. Sounded overblown and long

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1

Super 80s not really my style

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1

boo!!

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1

dafuq was this??? it tried to be edgy but it was so cringe

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1

I did not enjoy this album. There's like 5 listenable songs and 2 of them are any good. The singer can only hit like 5 notes and the songs' experiments make for an ear-grating experience. Favorite Track: Little 15

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1

One of the first albums I have actively disliked.

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1

Don't like this album

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1

1.5

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1

meh -- one and out

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1

Wished I hadn't listened to it

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1

I listened to the whole album which was an accomplishment but it was the same story for me with all the other albums of theirs. I've really always wanted to like Depeche Mode but end up being embarassed by lame rhyming lyrics and predictable melodies. Occasional flashes of a good song followed by the same melody or synth-trick over and over. Great if you're really into them or the whole scene but really too samey.

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1

So as I was listening to this album I was trying to imagine if you stripped it down and add real instruments what would that bring to the table. By the end of this album I was wondering what the point would be. I have said it before that the synthesizer age of the eighties did not age well. This is how these lads made their music. They were the kings of it. Sucks for them. I hated this album. Beyond the synthesizer, you had better have a good structured song for it to be over four minutes. 7 songs over 4 minutes, 1 over five minutes, 2 at the high end three minute range and just one song under three minutes. Perfect song is 3:30. Anything longer better be damn good.

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1

the europeans are welcome to keep depeche mode. i could not be arsed with this at all.

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1

Fuck Depeche Mode. Incredibly monotonous, dull and boring.

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1

It's Depeche Mode's Music for the Mases featuring none of their greatest hits! Buy now and you can get all this maudlin synth pop absolutely free because absolutely no one else wants it!

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Bjejeb

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didnt like it

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Not their best, pretty generic new wave.

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