Depeche Mode Biography

107k
Listen to Depeche Mode
and similar artists
Play Now

Home > Music > D > Depeche Mode > Biography


Birth Place: Basildon, Essex, England
Years Active: 1980–present
Genres: New Wave, Synthpop


Depeche Mode is an English electronic music band which formed in 1980, in Basildon, Essex. The group's original line-up consisted of Dave Gahan (lead vocals), Martin Gore (keyboards, guitar, vocals, chief songwriter after 1981), Andy Fletcher (keyboards) and Vince Clarke (keyboards, chief songwriter 1980–81). Vince Clarke left the band after the release of their first album in 1981 and was replaced by Alan Wilder (keyboards, drums) with Gore taking over songwriting. Wilder left the band in 1995 and since then Gahan, Gore, and Fletcher have continued as a trio.

Their debut album, “Speak & Spell” was released in 1981. It peaked at #10 on the U.K. Albums chart. The single, “Just Can't Get Enough” reached #8 on the U.K. Singles chart.

They followed in 1982 with “A Broken Frame,” which was recorded after the departure of Vince Clarke. The album reached #8 on the U.K. Albums chart. “See You,” the album’s first single, peaked at #6 in the U.K. Subsequent singles “The Meaning of Love” and “Leave in Silence” were Top 20 hits as well.

Their third album, “Construction Time Again” was released in1983. This was the first Depeche Mode album with Alan Wilder and it peaked at #6 in the U.K. “Everything Counts” peaked at #6 on the U.K. Singles chart and “Love, in Itself” peaked at #21.

In 1984 they released “Some Great Reward.” It peaked at #5 in the U.K. while reaching #54 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart in the United States. The single, “People Are People“ was a #4 hit in the U.K. and also reached #13 on the Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart in the U.S. “Master and Servant“ peaked at #9 in the U.K. and “Blasphemous Rumours” / “Somebody” reached #16.

“Black Celebration,” their fifth studio album, was released in 1986 and peaked at #3 on the U.K. Albums chart. U.K. Top 30 singles from the album included “Stripped” / “But Not Tonight,” “A Question of Lust” and “A Question of Time.”

In 1987 they released “Music for the Masses” which became the band's highest-charting in the U.S. upon its release, reaching #35 on the Billboard 200. The singles, “Strangelove,” “Never Let Me Down Again” and “Behind the Wheel” all reached the Hot 100, a first for the band. In the U.K. the singles were all Top 25 hits.

“Violator” was released in 1990 reaching #2 in the U.K. and #7 on the Billboard 200. It featured the hit single, “Personal Jesus” which went to #3 on the U.S. Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, #28 on the Hot 100 and #13 in the U.K. “Enjoy the Silence,” “Policy of Truth“ and “World in My Eyes” were all successful singles on both sides of the Atlantic as well.

In 1993 the band released “Songs of Faith and Devotion” and went to #1 on both the U.K. Albums chart and the Billboard 200. “I Feel You” and “Walking in My Shoes” were #1 singles on the Modern Rock Tracks chart. Along with “Condemnation” all three singles were Top 15 hits in the U.K.

Their ninth album, “Ultra” was released in 1997 and was the band's first since the departure of Alan Wilder, who had left the band in 1995. “Ultra” debuted at #1 on the U.K. Albums chart and at #5 in the Billboard 200. “It's No Good” which reached #5 in the U.K. peaked at #1 on the Billboard Dance Singles chart. “Barrel of a Gun” was a #4 hit in the U.K.

Released in 2001, “Exciter” debuted at #9 in the U.K. Albums chart and debuted at #8 on the Billboard 200. It is the only Depeche Mode album to debut higher in the U.S. than in the U.K. “Dream On,” “I Feel Loved,” and “Freelove” were all #1 hits on the Billboard Dance Songs chart.

“Playing the Angel” was released in 2005 and debuted at #6 in the U.K. and at #7 on the Billboard 200. “Precious” topped the Dance Songs chart and reached #4 in the U.K. “Suffer Well“ was also #1 on the Dance chart and peaked at #12 in the U.K.

In 2009, “Sounds of the Universe” was released. It peaked at #2 on the U.K. Albums chart and #3 on the Billboard 200. “Perfect” was another #1 hit on the Billboard Dance Songs chart.

Since their debut in 1981, Depeche Mode have had 48 songs in the U.K. Singles chart, as well as one U.S. and two U.K. #1 albums in “Songs of Faith and Devotion” and “Ultra.” According to their record company, Depeche Mode have sold over 100 million records worldwide. The group's concert video “Devotional” was nominated for Best Long Form Music Video at the 37th Grammy Awards in 1995. “Suffer Well,” the third single of the album “Playing the Angel,” was nominated in the category for Best Dance Recording at the 49th Grammy Awards in 2007. “Sounds of the Universe” was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Album. They received a second nomination for the video “Wrong” for Best Short Form Music Video at The 52nd Grammy Awards.




Browse More Music:
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z