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Depeche Mode - Speak And Spell (Deluxe)

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Speak And Spell (Deluxe)

Depeche Mode

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Though probably nobody fully appreciated it at the time -- perhaps least of all the band! -- Depeche Mode's debut is at once both a conservative, functional pop record and a groundbreaking release. While various synth pioneers had come before -- Gary Numan, early Human League, late-'70s Euro-disco, and above all Kraftwerk all had clear influence on Speak & Spell -- Depeche became the undisputed founder of straight-up synth pop with the album's 11 songs, light, hooky, and danceable numbers about love, life, and clubs. For all the claims about "dated" '80s sounds from rock purists, it should be noted that the basic guitar/bass/drums lineup of rock is almost 25 years older than the catchy keyboard lines and electronic drums making the music here. That such a sound would eventually become ubiquitous during the Reagan years, spawning lots of crud along the way, means the band should no more be held to blame for that than Motown and the Beatles for inspiring lots of bad stuff in the '60s. Credit for the album's success has to go to main songwriter Vince Clarke, who would extend and arguably perfect the synth pop formula with Yazoo and Erasure; the classic early singles "New Life," "Dreaming of Me," and "Just Can't Get Enough," along with numbers ranging from the slyly homoerotic "Pretty Boy" to the moody thumper "Photographic," keep everything moving throughout. David Gahan undersings about half the album, and Martin Gore's two numbers lack the distinctiveness of his later work, but Speak & Spell remains an undiluted joy.
© Ned Raggett /TiVo

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Speak And Spell (Deluxe)

Depeche Mode

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1
New Life
00:03:44

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

2
I Sometimes Wish I Was Dead
00:02:16

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

3
Puppets
00:03:56

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

4
Boys Say Go!
00:03:05

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

5
Nodisco
00:04:12

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

6
What's Your Name?
00:02:42

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

7
Photographic
00:04:43

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

8
Tora! Tora! Tora!
00:04:31

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

9
Big Muff
00:04:21

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

10
Any Second Now (Voices)
00:02:34

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

11
Just Can't Get Enough
00:03:40

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

12
Dreaming of Me
00:04:01

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 2006 Digital Remaster Vince Clarke, Andy Fletcher, Dave Gahan and Martin Gore/Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

DISC 2

1
Ice Machine
00:04:06

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 1981 Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

2
Shout!
00:03:43

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 1981 Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

3
Any Second Now
00:03:07

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 1981 Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

4
Just Can't Get Enough (Schizo Mix)
00:06:43

Depeche Mode, Main Artist

(P) 1981 Mute Records Limited, a BMG company, under exclusive license to Sony Music Entertainment

Album Description

Though probably nobody fully appreciated it at the time -- perhaps least of all the band! -- Depeche Mode's debut is at once both a conservative, functional pop record and a groundbreaking release. While various synth pioneers had come before -- Gary Numan, early Human League, late-'70s Euro-disco, and above all Kraftwerk all had clear influence on Speak & Spell -- Depeche became the undisputed founder of straight-up synth pop with the album's 11 songs, light, hooky, and danceable numbers about love, life, and clubs. For all the claims about "dated" '80s sounds from rock purists, it should be noted that the basic guitar/bass/drums lineup of rock is almost 25 years older than the catchy keyboard lines and electronic drums making the music here. That such a sound would eventually become ubiquitous during the Reagan years, spawning lots of crud along the way, means the band should no more be held to blame for that than Motown and the Beatles for inspiring lots of bad stuff in the '60s. Credit for the album's success has to go to main songwriter Vince Clarke, who would extend and arguably perfect the synth pop formula with Yazoo and Erasure; the classic early singles "New Life," "Dreaming of Me," and "Just Can't Get Enough," along with numbers ranging from the slyly homoerotic "Pretty Boy" to the moody thumper "Photographic," keep everything moving throughout. David Gahan undersings about half the album, and Martin Gore's two numbers lack the distinctiveness of his later work, but Speak & Spell remains an undiluted joy.
© Ned Raggett /TiVo

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