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Author Topic: 1982: A Broken Frame  (Read 48248 times)

Offline Angelinda

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Re: 1982: A Broken Frame
« Reply #135 on: 04 January 2014 - 04:28:02 »
1983-03-03 - Bravo (Germany) - Depeche Mode Wurden Meine Freunde

[Thanks to Milik for offering to send in this scan!]



[I typed out the text. Typing out this whole article made me cringe, and when I was done I googled the girl's name and I see that I'm not the only one who thinks this girl is weird; this is from Alan's Q&A on Shunt:
"Please tell us about your weirdest encounter with a fan!"
"Maren Bode from Germany used to follow DM everywhere. Not so unusual you might say, except she was very strange. She didn't say much but she could give you the most bizarre stare. She used to carry a furry animal's tail with her. You could never get away from her once you stepped onto German soil."
http://oldsite.recoil.co.uk/forum/qa/pfans.htm ]

Schicksals-Story

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Maren (15) aus Köln: Depeche Mode wurden mein Freunde

Als ich zum erstenmal "New Life" von Depeche Mode hörte, war ich total begeistert. Ich kaufte mir die Platte und spielte sie mindestens fünfzigmal hintereinander ab. Die Rückseite "Shout" gefiel mir noch fast besser. Und ich wußte: Depeche Mode ist meine Super-Gruppe.
Ab sofort sammelte ich alles über sie. Ich forstete BRAVO nach Berichten über "meine" Jungs durch, ich sah mir jeden Auftritt von Depeche Mode im Fernsehen an. Und natürlich hortete ich Fotos von der Gruppe. Am besten gefiel mir der süße Sänger David Gahan. Ich war total verliebt in ihn, und natürlich wollte ich ihn gern mal in natura sehen. Drum war ich total happy, als ich in einer Programmzeitschrift von einem Depeche-Mode-Konzert in Hannover las.
Am 25 März 1982 sollte es soweit sein - sie kamen wirklich und wahrhaftig in meine Nähe... Ich fuhr mit dem Zug von Köln nach Hannover und ging mit meinem Onkel, der auch ein Depeche-Mode-Fan ist, ins Konzert. Ich nahm ein Riesen-Paket mit, in dem ich lauter Geschenke für Depeche Mode und einen 30 Seiten langen Brief eingepackt hatte. Es waren englische Science-fiction Heft, Pralinen, Fotos drin. Und ich bat ein paar Ordner, es für mich in der Garderobe abzugeben. Denn mit reinnehmen durfte ich es nicht, es war zu groß.
Das Konzert war ganz toll. Als Dave auf die Bühne kam, wäre ich fast ohnmächtig geworden. Mir kamen die Tränen. Ich tanzte wie verrückte und sang die Refrains mit und schrie.
Sobald das Programm um war, stürzte ich zur Bühne, um mir Autogramme zu holen. Als Dave vor mir war, konnte ich einfach nicht anders: ich umarmte und kußte ihn. Ich gab ihm auch noch einen Brief, er las die erste Seite und lächelte. Mehr war nicht. Sie schenkten mir Autogramme - and it was all over now...
Meine Stimmung war auf dem Nullpunkt in den nächsten Wochen. Aber am 30. April bekam ich einen Brief von Martin Gore, dem Texter von Depeche Mode.
Er schickte mir tolle Großaufnahmen von der Gruppe, ein T-Shirt mit dem Cover ihrer LP "Speak and Spell". Martin schrieb, daß sich die Jungs irre über meine Geschenke gefreut und das Paket erst nach dem Konzert bekommen hätten.
Sie bedankten sich dafür, daß ich so ein großer Fan von ihnen bin und auch andere Leute von ihrer Musik überzeuge (das hatte ich in meinen Brief geschrieben).
Zwei Tage später kamen noch zwei Singles an: "Meaning of Love" und "Dreaming of Me", die allererste Platte von ihnen, die's aber nur in England kaufen gibt.
Dafür wollte ich mich nun wieder revanchieren. Ich schickte Dave zu seinem Geburtstag (9. Mai) ein paar kleine Geschenke wie Teetassen mit Herzchen drauf, Apfelschnaps-Bonbons usw. Aber ich bekam keine Antwort.
Auch von Andy, der am 8. Juli Geburtstag hat und dem ich auch ein paar Kleinigkeiten schickte, kam keine Resonanz.
Ich machte einen letzten Versuch und gratulierte auch Martin, der am 23. Juli Geburtstag hat, mit einem Geschenke-Paket. Er reagierte prompt. Schon drei Tage später bekam ich einen Anruf aus England. Ich war natürlich total perplex. Aber dann war ich happy. Wir unterhielten uns halb englisch, halb deutsche und es war spitze. Er gab mir auch seine Privat-Telefonnummer.
Dann war Funkstille bis September. Martin schrieb mir einen Brief und lud mich zu einem Treffen mit seiner Gruppe nach dem nächsten Deutschland-Konzert in meiner Nähe ein.
Mein Gott, ich schwebte wie auf Wolken! Dann kam der große Tag: Am 29. November kamen Depeche Mode nach Köln.
Ich zog mir irrsten Klamotten an, nahm ein paar Geschenke mit und ein Plakat, auf dem stand "We like Depeche Mode". Ich kam gratis in die Stadthalle rein, denn Martin hatte mich auf die Gastliste gesetzt.
Ich zitterte am ganzen Körper, als ich die Halle reinging. Aber bevor ich "meine" Jungs zu sehen bekam, mußte ich erst mal das Vorprogramm von "X-Agenten" über mich ergeben lassen. Die passen nach meiner Meinung ja überhaupt nicht zu "Depeche Mode", aber nun ja...
Ich stand erst in der vieren Reihe, aber dann als Depeche Mode auf die Bühne kamen und "Shout" spielten, da flippte ich total aus. Irgendwoher bekam ich irrsinnige Kräfte und ich boxte mich durch bis zur ersten Reihe. Dort hielt ich mein Plakat hoch und kreischte alle Songs mit.
Nach dem Konzert, als der Saal schon ganz leer war, stand ich immer noch an der Bühne rum und wartete, was geschehen würde. Denn schließlich hatte mich Martin ja eingeladen zu einem Triff mit den Jungs.
Anne, Martins Freundin, kam auf mich zu, stellte sich vor und brachte mich zu Depeche Mode hinter die Bühne. Ich stand in der Tür und wußte nicht, was ich sagen sollte. Also packte ich meine Geschenke aus. Ich bekam was zu trinken, und langsam taute ich auf. Ich fragte sie alles, was ich wollte.
Anne knipste Fotos von mir und den Jungs, wir blödelten rum und ich spielte auf einem der Synthesizer einen "heißen Boogie" und "New Life" von Depeche Mode. Alle klatschten mit. Dann sangen wir alte Songs, und um Mitternacht war Schluß. Ich mußte wieder zur Schule am nächsten Morgen, und die Jungs hatten ein Konzert.
Am 2. Dezember spielten meine Superstars in Hannover, und ich durfte wieder hin. Diesmal nahm ich meine Freundin Barbarella mit. Die Halle war proppenvoll.
Man kriegte fast keine Luft mehr, so dichtgedrängt standen die Leute zusammen. Nach dem Konzert wurden alle rausgeworfen von den Ordnern, auch ich. Ich wehrte mich zwar und versuchte ihnen zu erklären, daß ich mich nach dem Konzert mit Depeche Mode verabredet hatte. Aber die glaubten mir das natürlich nicht.
Als ich draußen in der Kälte stand und begriff, daß der Treff nun ins Wasser gefallen war, wurde ich todtraurig. Ich war so verzweifelt, daß ich mich einfach auf den Boden schmiß und losheulte. Mein Onkel, der mich und Barbarella abholen sollte, wollte mich trösten, aber da half nichts.
Gerade als wir zum Auto gingen, sah ich Anne, Martins Freundin. sie kam direkt auf uns zu und erklärte, sie hätte mich gesucht und wo ich denn abgeblieben sei... Ich war fast verrückt vor Freude. Es wurde also doch noch was draus...
Wir unterhielten uns prima mit Alan, Dave, Martin und Anne. Sie luden mich zum nächsten Konzert in Goslar ein und schenkten mir zwei Freikarten.
Ich ließ mir schnell noch alle LPs signieren und dann bekamen sie von mir ein Geschenk, über das sie sich irrsinnig freuten.
Ich hatte einen "Goldenen Otto" aus Ton und Goldflitterspray gebastelt.
Jedenfalls haben sich die vier Jungs riesig drüber gefreut. Denn daß sie einmal einen echten "Goldenen" von Bravo kriegen, das glauben sie nicht. Aber der nachgemachte von mir ist jetzt ihr Talisman, und er soll ihnen Glück und Erfolg in Deutschland bringen.
Zum Abschied umarmte mich Anne, die überhaupt ganz lieb zu mir war. Und auch Martin umarmte und küßte mich.
Diesmal ist's ein schlimmer Abschied gewesen, denn "meine" Jungs wissen noch nicht, ob sie 1983 eine Deutschland-Tournee machen.

Fotos:
So ging Maren aus Köln zu Depeche-Mode-Konzerten: Sie hatte sich ihre verrücktesten Klamotten angezogen - knallenge Hosen, ein witziges T-Shirt und eine Jacke mit zwei kleinen "Fuchschwänzen" an den Achseln. Wer mit ihr Kontakt aufnehmen will: Maren Bode, Käulchensweg 32, 5 Köln 91
Das ist ein Foto, das Maren ganz besonders liebt: Sie und der Sänger der Gruppe, David Gahan: "I love him" hat Maren Bode dazugeschrieben.
Alan mit dem "Goldene Otto", den Maren extra für ihre Jungs aus Ton modelliert und mit Goldflitter besprüht hat.
Gruppenfoto mit Dame: BRAVO-Leserin Maren und ihre Freunde von Depeche Mode - fotografiert von Martins Freundin Anne.
Diese Zeichnung mit einem Baum, der Depeche-Mode-LPs als Früchte trägt, hat Maren Martin verehrt.


[Translation by me:]

Destiny-story

STOP
Now I'm talking!
Readers report from their lives

Marin (15) from Cologne: Depeche Mode became my friends

When I heard "New Life" from Depeche Mode for the first time, I was totally smitten. I bought the record and played it at least fifty times in a row. The B-side, "Shout", pleased me almost even more. And I knew: Depeche Mode is my super band.
I immediately started collecting everything from them. I scoured Bravo magazine for articles about "my" boys, I watch every performance on TV. And of course I collected photos of the band. I mostly liked cute singer David Gahan. I was totally in love with him, and of course I would love to see him in person. So I was extremely happy when I read about a Depeche Mode concert in Hanover in a live concert magazine.
It would be on March 25th 1982 - they would really and truly come near me... I went by train from Cologne to Hanover and I went with my uncle, who is also a Depeche Mode fan, to the concert. I took a cardboard box with me, in which I packed only gifts for Depeche Mode as well as a 30-page-long letter. It had a sciencefiction magazine, chocolates, and photos in it. And I asked a couple of crew members to take it to the cloak room. Because I wasn't allowed to take it in the venue, it was too big.
The concert was really great. When Dave went on stage, I almost fainted. Tears were falling. I danced like crazy and sang along to the choruses and screamed.
As soon as the gig was over, I ran to the stage, to get myself an autograph. When Dave stood before me, I simply had to: I hugged him and kissed him. I also gave him another letter, he read the first page and smiled. That was all. They gave me their autographs - "and it was all over now..."
My mood was at an all-time-low in the next few weeks. But on the 30th of April I received a letter from Martin Gore, the lyricist of Depeche Mode.
They thanked me, for being such a big fan of them and also encouraging other people to listen to their music (I wrote that in my letter).
Two days later I received two singles: "Meaning Of Love" and "Dreaming Of Me", their first record, which can only be bought in England.
That brought me back on my feet. I sent Dave for his birthday (9th of May) some few small gifts like teacups with harts on them, appleschnaps bonbons, etc. But I got no reply. Neither from Andy, whose birthday is on the 8th of July and to whom I had sent some few small gifts too, did I get any response.
I did a last attempt and congratulated Martin on his birthday, which was on the 23rd of July, with a gift basket. He replied immediately. Just three days later I received a phonecall from England. I of course was totally stunned. But then I became happy. We chatted in half-English, half-German and it was awesome. He also gave me his private phone number.
Then there was radio silence until September. Martin wrote me a letter and told me to meet them with his band after the next Depeche Mode concert near me.
My God, I was on cloud nine! Then the big day arrived: on the 29th of November Depeche Mode were coming to Cologne.
I put on my weirdest clothes, took a few gifts with me and a sign which said "We like Depeche Mode". I entered the Stadthalle venue for free, since Martin had put me on the guestlist.
My entire body was trembling, when I went into the venue. But before I could see "my" boys, I first had to let the support act of the "X-Agenten" run over me. If you ask me, they don't fit "Depeche Mode" at all, but okay...
I was standing in the fourth row, but then when Depeche Mode came on stage and played "Shout", I freaked out completely. Somehow I received a strange strength and I forced myself through the crowd to the first row. There, I held my sign up high and I screamed along to all of the songs. '
After the concert, when the venue became really empty, I continued to stand at the stage and waited to see what would happen. After all, Martin did invite me to a meeting with the boys.
Anne, Martin's girlfriend, came towards me, introduced herself to me and brought me to Depeche Mode behind the stage. I was standing in the doorway and didn't know what to say. So I started unpacking my gifts. I got a drink, and slowly I became at ease. I asked them anything I wanted to.
Anne took photos of me and the boys, we joked around and I played "Hot Boogie" and "New Life" from Depeche Mode on their synthesiser. They all clapped along. Then we sang old songs, and it was over by midnight. I had to go to school tomorrow, and the boys had a gig tomorrow. On the 2nd of December, my superstars would play in Hanover, and I was allowed to come there again. This time, I took my friend Barbarella with me. The venue was completely packed.
You could hardly breathe, that's how tightly packed the crowd was. After the concert, everyone was removed from the venue, even me. I resisted heavily and asked them to verify that I was allowed to meet Depeche Mode after the show. But of course they didn't believe me.
When I stood outside in the cold and realised that the meeting had failed, I became really sad. I was so at a loss, that I simply dropped to the ground and bursted into tears. My uncle, who came to pick me and Barbarella up, tried to comfort me, but it didn't work.
Just as we went to the car, I saw Anne, Martin's girlfriend. She came directly towards up and explained that she had been looking for me and wondered where I was... I was pretty much taken over by joy. So it worked out anyway...
We got along well with Alan, Dave, Martin, and Anne. They invited me to their next concert in Goslar and gave me two free tickets.
I quickly got them to sign all LPs and then I gave them a gift, which amused them greatly.
I had molded them a "Golden Otto"(= an award which Bravo magazine gives to artists annually) from clay and gold paint spray.
Anyway, the guys really enjoyed it. That's because they don't believe they actually will receive an actual "Golden Otto" from Bravo one day. But the fake one from me is now their lucky charm, and it will bring them much luck and success in Germany.
When saying goodbye, Anne hugged me, who had been very sweet to me throughout by the way. And also Martin hugged and kissed me.
This time, it was a bad goodbye, because "my" boys don't know yet if they will tour Germany in 1983 yet.

Photos:
This is how Maren from Cologne went to the Depeche Mode concerts: She put on her craziest clothes - tight trousers, a funny T-shirt and a jacket with two furry "brushes" near the armpits. If you'd like to contact her: Maren Bode, Käulchensweg 32, 5 Cologne 91
That is a photo, which Maren loves especially: she and the singer of the group, David Gahan: "I love him", has Maren Bode written underneath.
Alan holding the "Golden Otto", which Maren molded from clay and sprayed with golden paint.
A group photo with the lady: Bravo-reader Maren and her friends from Depeche Mode - photographed by Martin's girlfriend.
Martin is honoured to have received this drawing from Maren of a tree bearing the Depeche Mode LPs as fruits.
2017-06-30: Photobucket has disabled external image hosting, all scans will have to be re-uploaded on another site.

Offline Angelinda

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Re: 1982: A Broken Frame
« Reply #136 on: 17 January 2014 - 05:04:54 »
1983-03-28 - The Globe And The Mail (Canada) - Concert Review

[Taken from an Intranet archive.]

Band's virtues stay in studio
LIAM LACEY

On some historical level, the English band Depeche Mode has a place: its Just Can't Get Enough was one of the first English synthesizer songs that had the right bounce and catchy hook to snare the American radio market, though the band was promptly swamped by the much larger success of Human League that followed shortly after. Friday night Depeche Mode returned to The Concert Hall for the second time in less than a year and, while it was a changed outfit in a few respects, the novelty of the all- synthesizer fashion bands has worn off considerably since the last visit.

The band's best songwriter, Vince Clarke, left to create Yaz, one of the hottest dance club groups to surface in the last year. Depeche Mode, too, is a dance band, but it relies on its absent member, Daniel Miller, who pre-programs the bass and rhythm lines that come from the tape recorder occupying the drummer's spot on stage. There is still the same row of charmingly attired young men with interesting haircuts making awkward stabs at their synthesizers on stage.

The popularity of the band - 1,500 fans showed up to dance enthusiastically to almost every rhythm track - stems not only from its conceit that acoustic instruments have gone by the boards, but from its simple, irritatingly catchy melodies. It's neither a compliment nor exactly a dismissal to say that Depeche Mode is almost in the same league as late sixties' bands such as the Ohio Express, The Lemon Pipers or the 1910 Fruit Gum Company - the product of record company Kasanetz-Katz's bubble-gum music. Certainly the audience demographics are the same: teenage fans who gravitate quickly to a catchy, slightly irritating sound, with suggestions of sexual coyness and rhyming dictionary verses. The difference is that the people who churned out songs such as Green Tambourine and Yummy Yummy Yummy I Got Love In My Tummy were actually good studio musicians, and they could sing. Compared to good bubblegum, Depeche Mode is like something that has spent the night on the bedpost.

Perhaps it's a case of growing spoiled: initially, all synthesizer bands sounded the same. After a while, the distinctions become clear: some bands have musicianship and some, such as Depeche Mode, have clever engineers working in the studio for them. Given that the best part of Depeche Mode's music is clearly its pre-recorded portion, and that people insist on listening to this kind of soul-destroying pop mush, perhaps a creative solution could be reached. Why not send five tape recorders on tour, and leave the boys at home to make new videos?
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Offline Angelinda

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Re: 1982: A Broken Frame
« Reply #137 on: 17 January 2014 - 05:05:13 »
1983-03-31 - BBC (UK) - Whatever You Want (Live at Brixton 23-12-1982)

Interview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYlrjRWBKDY
Tora! Tora! Tora!: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMs5Rje_dLg
Meaning Of Love: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OVsyxMHwI9I
Satellite: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EktoAwKDyZU



Interview:
Andy: Well we've got a new single out, called 'Get The Balance Right', on Mute.
Dave: BONG 2.
Andy: Bong 2.
Dave: It's out on 12" as well.
Andy: It's out on 12".
Dave: With "Tora, Tora..." on it.
Andy: With a live version of "Tora, Tora, Tora".
Dave: Which is not the one you're gonna see, say that.
Andy: It's not the one you're gonna see in a bit.
Dave: 'Cos that one was recorded at Brixton and the one on the album was recorded at Hammersmith.
Andy: That's right. Yeah, so the one you're gonna see in a bit is recorded at Brixton, the next one is at Hammersmith.
[Andy and Martin focus on playing ping-pong]
Dave: Also, we're going to America, Fletch, mention that, Japan...
Andy: Yeah, we're going, in the middle of March, we're going to America, and we're going to Japan, that's why I've got this style.
Dave: And Hong Kong.
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Offline Angelinda

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Re: 1982: A Broken Frame
« Reply #138 on: 05 May 2014 - 03:07:00 »
2006-09-29 - Mute - A Broken Frame Remaster

Documentary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fZmb1pB-qWg



[I typed out the text:]

"The beginning of their so-called dark phase..."
Depeche Mode: 1982

Neil Ferris: Depeche Mode had probably been going, as far as the media were concerned, as far as I was concerned, no more than 9 months, maybe 10 months. And Dan said, "I gotta tell you some news: Vince is leaving the band." I went, "I don't believe you, he can't be leaving the band. We've only just got there, we just had three hit records." And Vince was leaving.
Chris Carr: My initial reaction was... hell. There was, "Is he coming back? Is he  not? Has he gone for good?"
Vince Clarke: The deed was done, yeah. It's like packing [up] your girlfriend, you can't go back.
Chris Carr: "Yes, he's definitely gone for good." Then there was a period from our side of stuff, "Do you think that Depeche are gonna continue?"
Dave Henderson: I think at press, people were, "Well, they're just gonna implode now, because, what's gonna happen? There's not gonna be a Depeche Mode." And I remember people being very interviewed in what Vince was gonna do, and vince's next project.
Martin Gore: He announced it at such an odd time. I'm not even sure if the album had been released.
Andy Franks: It's like, "What the hell are you doing? You've got that sort of opportunities that most people would kill for."
Vince Clarke: I was just being a miserable bastard, you know. I think that they knew that I was gonna do something. We started bickering and there were more arguments, especially when we were in the tour bus, and I just got fed up with it, really.
Dave Gahan: He came to me and he said, "I don't think this is something I wanna do, and I don't like all the questions we get asked, I don't like doing interviews, I don't like doing TV, I don't like touring..." He said all these things, and I was like, "Vince, that's what we're gonna be doing."
Vince Clarke: I think the band were really pissed off, I know they were. I know because they felt that I had left them in the lurch.
Martin Gore: I think that he just felt that he could do it on his own.
vince Clarke: When I made the decision to leave Depeche, it was... I know I did think that I wouldn't be recording again. I was gonna get a job, actually. But I did a demo for Alison Moyet, played it to Daniel, and Daniel, just about, showed enough interest.
Chris Carr: And the next thing we knew is Vince and Alison, and as a PR company we had Yazoo to kind of contend with and work with as well.
Jaqcues Attali: The success of Yazoo was incredible. It was very difficult to think that one day at this time, Depeche is fact would be one day much bigger.
Martin Gore: In some ways, for Mute, it must have been a blessing, because Vince went on to become successful.
Interviewer: [pretending to be Daniel Miller] "You don't need them." [laughter]
Martin Gore: Yeah, it was probably Daniel who actually told him to leave.
Chris Carr: Daniel was kind of, I don't know if by design or by accident, was fairly good at shephering the situation.
Daniel Miller: Everybody was knocked back, but I don't think anybody felt that it was the end of the band, in fact, the band in particular were very determined to move on.
Neil Ferris: I remember Dan's exact words, he said, "It's Gonna be alright, Neil, don't worry, it'll be alright: Martin can write some song." And I thought, "Oh God, what are we doing?"
Andy Fletcher: It really didn't sort of worry us that much. It should have worried every other band when your main songwriter departs, but we didn't even think about it, we just carried on.
Daniel Miller: We discussed what we were gonna do about replacing Vince, and the band thought that there wouldn't be a straight replacement, initially, to kind of draft somebody, but they needed an extra keyboardist for life.
Andy Fletcher: We had put an advert in the NME for "Synthesizer player, under 21."
Alan Wilder: I had been in and out several bands in the period leading up to my joining. At that time, I was just sort of looking around for another job, something that was gonna pay the wages. And there was this advert in the Melody Maker, and I kind of almost knew who it was immediately, even though it didn't say from the advert, because I had just read somewhere the week before that they'd lost a member, and I thought, "Oh, it's probably Depeche Mode", even though I did not know that much about the at the time.
Dave Gahan: We auditioned at Blackwing, as usual, and all these strange and wonderful characters showed up, and they were all dressed up to the nines but couldn't play, and Al came along and could play anything. We thought we'd really get him by asking him to play, like, a bass line and a melody at the same time, and he did it, and we were like, "Wow, this guy is, like, amazing."
Alan Wilder: When I went initial audition, it did seem very simple what they were asking me to do, very simple one-line tunes and a bit of backing vocal. But apparently many people had struggled to do that, and I didn't.
Daniel Miller: And I think they were a bit intimidated by it as well, because he was such a good keyboardplayer. While they were struggling playing the notes, he was just kind of reading a newspaper and reading at the same time.
Dave Gahan: So he was in. And, I think we've paid him some ridiculous amount, like 100 quid a week or something, we gave him like 100 quid a week, for the first couple of years, till he finally turned around and was like, "Am I in the band?"
Chris Carr: He, while it wasn't initially apparent, was a steadying hand.
Dan Silver: It was more like a band who were together than three guys and Vince who wasn't having a good time, so in that sense, the machine was not broken, it was just changed.
Andy Franks: Charlie Wilder's first gig, wasn't that at Crocs?
Daryl Bamonte: Ehm, he played at Crocs, yeah.
Alan Wilder: And then, within a space of days, I think, we were all whizzed off to New York to play a gig, and I think that was the first sort of proper gig.
Andy Fletcher: We did Top Of The Pops and then got Concorde over for our first gig, so, we didn't go on stage until 3 o'clock in the morning, none of our synths were working, Dave, meanwhile, had decided to have one of his tattoos removed and it had all gone septic, so we had a lead, a dancing lead singer, with a septic left arm in a sling, so it didn't look very good. And I remember when we came off and we was really tired, it must have been about 5 o'clock in the morning, we got out of that place, the Ritz, and this bloke shouted to us, "What happened to you guys, you used to be good!" We all, all of us, remember that comment, and feeling really down, and it was just one of those tours, it wasn't that successful. We just honestly thought that our music would never ever be compatible with what the Americans want.
Daryl Bamonte: The other three decided that they wanted to make A Broken Frame on their own, otherwise it would have been perhaps perceived that Alan was pulling the strings as people thought Vince was, so people got confused, and I think a lot of fans thought that after the first bout of tour that Alan had left, because the album had come out, and he wasn't mentioned on it. But for them it was the best move, because they wanted to prove that they could do it on their own.
Chris Carr: I think, to a certain extent, there was, "We don't know what to do", and also "He's not one of us". And, I think, individually, if you kind of consulted them, they would have all said, "I think he should be a member of the group." But do it collectively, and you're into committee land, and if anybody can muddy waters, it's Depeche, [they] collectively can do that. We felt sorry for him, but understood what they were doing, and that was that.
Dave Gahan: We went into the studio, and Martin was given the tall order to come up with, like, 10 songs.
Daniel Miller: I hadn't really heard very many of his songs, but the others had and knew his potential.
Martin Gore: I think, at the time, I was quite excited about it. It was the obvious choice for me to take over, because at that point, Dave didn't even write songs.
Andy Fletcher: Well Martin was in some ways a more experienced songwriter already than Vince. Martin had been writing songs since the age of 14. And he wrote some fantastic songs then, which some of the songs he wrote then made it onto A Broken Frame.
Vince Clarke: I knew Martin wrote good songs, because I had heard his pervious band, Normal And The Worms. They were kind of quite unconventional. It was tasty, savourable, as well, in retrospect it did, I think, in songwriting.
Daniel Miller: It would have been weird doing Speak And Spell Part 2 with the nature of Martin's songs, they were much more complex, melodically. I just don't think it would have worked to make that kind of record. So I think they definitely wanted to spread their wings and work in a different way.
John Fryer: The technical side of it had moved on, so it was as bit easier to work, and if you recorded something on day 1, which you didn't like on day 4, it was easier to go back and replace that, whereas before, if you were on the 8-track and you would have bounced it in with some other sounds, you're kind of stuck with it.
Andy Fletcher: It was more sort of how we would record an album now, because we hadn't been playing a lot these songs live, so it was putting them together from scratch.
Dave Henderson: It was set up for a full [album], so people weren't expecting a lot of it. Your main songwriter is gone... As I say, it was very, very tribal, a lot of people were into lots of kinds of music, so what Depeche Mode did within that area of music, people just thought, "Oh, that's okay, but they're not gonna have the big hits like they used to."
Andy Fletcher: We didn't have a vision at all. We were sort of torn between being a pop band on Smash Hits and sort of a cooler, alternative band.
Neil Ferris: Peel was playing the band, Peter Powell was playing the band, Janice Long was playing the band, so in terms of the credible end of radio 1, the after 4 o'clock going until the evening where you wanted, as a promotion man, you absolutely wanted your band to be embraced, they were embracing the band. It was more that the guys in daytime radio who just didn't really kind of quite understand a band that were all keyboards.
Dave Gahan: Neil knew that it was gonna be really hard to get over on the radio, and of course they hated. By that time, we were all already hated by radio deejays, and they would often comment on how "doomy" we were.
Neil Ferris: When See you came out, I don't think it, in terms of trying to get where I wanted to get, achieve very much more. Yeah, we got on the radio. Yes, we did some TV. We probably did some TV in those days that we shouldn't have done, which I felt was kind of probably my fault, but I was so desparate to move the band forward, and to get more people to know about them, and to break the band into a bigger arena, that we probably did stuff that, in retrospect, I probably would have never allowed them to do if I had been a few years older.
Martin Gore: We were just so young and stupid, that we agreed to anything that anyone offered us. There was always an argument, "It goes out to so and so many million people". "Okay, we'll do it." [laughs]
Alan Wilder: Looking back, of course we overdid the real pop stuff, but it was sold to us that we really needed to do those things if we wanted to keep having hit records, and so we just did everything that came along. As time went on, we became a bit more choosy. But that fear of being forgotten, I think, was always there.
Daryl Bamonte: See You, which was the first single from A Broken Frame, was probably more poppy than the singles from Speak And Spell, in a way. But a lot of the other songs on A Broken Frame are much darker, like Fransky said.
Andy Franks: The video for See You wasn't particularly dark, was it?
Daryl Bamonte: No. [laughter]
Chris Carr: It surprised me that it didn't become as big as it became, but from our side of stuff it was the early days, they still weren't kind of ready, so we were in a comfort zone.
Martin Gore: We're generally sort of, like, very pessimistic people, but for a very short period, we felt a little bit invincible, and when The Meaning Of Love came out, we expected it to do even better.
Andy Fletcher: I remember it had gone in the charts at number 5, and we were sort of thinking it might go to number 1 and stuff, and when when we came, we got off the airplane, and got the chart, it was, like, gone down to 17.
Martin Gore: And that was our first jolt of failure, even though ut still got fairly high. It felt like a disappointment after See You.
Daniel Miller: Everybody was a bit shocked by that, but it wasn't one of their best singles.
Martin Gore: Daniel thought that Gallup must have made a mistake. [laughs]
Andy Fletcher: It was a bit too... teeny.
Martin Gore: I don't blame the press for not giving us not much respect in those days, there was lots of, like, teen magazines around that [time], Smash Hits and things like that, and we did the lot.
Chris Carr: The whole credibility angle - and I can't stress the importance of that as much - in those days it was vital. It was like, "Okay, we don't want to be interviewed, but put out a side of us that people are gonna have to pay attention to. So artwork was the first kind of sign that there was something more to this band. At the time there were a lot of journalists who were all ex-art school, etcetera, so the link was being made: these guys, they may not make good music, but they're beginning to be very savvy in other areas.
Brian Griffin: Well, it was remarkable. I remember when I first saw the polaroid, it was just unbelievable. And so after I processed them all up and Daniel came down to Rotherhithe here, to the studio.
Daniel Miller: I popped down to have a look, and just looking at the lightbox and I was seeing this image and I thought they were fantastic, I couldn't quite believe how strong it was.
Martin Gore: When we actually saw the cover, we thought it was quite a stunning picture, and it did go on to win awards.
Andy Fletcher: It was 'Sleeve Of The Year', wasn't it, and it's just an amazing picture, fantastic picture. He paid up for Speak And Spell! [laughs]
Dave Gahan: I think it's one of the best things that we've done, actually.
Brian Griffin: Probably the greatest colour photograph I've ever taken, I think. I'm egotistically enough to say that and say, "Okay, find me a better one."
Martyn Atkins: Brian had an idea for a photograph of some kind of person breaking the frame of the photograph, but I think, I consciously wanted to steer it more in that kind of Russian iconic imagery, because I think it was something that I kind of liked the look of, [and] Daniel was very much into.
Brian Griffin: We did have heavy discussions about it, so I would say it was like a complete collaborative idea, really.
Andy Fletcher: Brian would just come to the studio and talk about things and we wouldn't have a clue what he was saying, really, because it was all art talk. He'd just go, "...Yeah, I can see this... the sleeve... the field...", you know. We'd go, "Oh, alright, just do it."
Brian Griffin: So we all set off in this location bus, with my assistant Stuart Graham, Jacky Fry, the lady who was going to be the peasant, and it was just pouring with rain, just horrible. But one thing you know in photography is that rain can be really good, because when rain stops, the sky can become very interesting.
Martyn Atkins: We had hailstones and rain and all sorts of stuff, but Brian's ego will probably tell you that he did it all himself. Wouldn't you, Brian? [winks at camera and gives thumbs up]
Brian Griffin: And Martyn Atkins said - he came up on his motorbike - he said, "Oh, I'll better go out for getting lunch, then." So he rode off on his motorbike for lunch, and then the rain stopped.
Dave Gahan: It was just one of those, as he would have said, "The magic was there." It was the "magic." It was the "magic."
John Fryer: To be honest with you, I think the songwriting has got so much better, it's so superior to the early days.
Jacques Attali: It was not completely mature, the personality of Martin at the time of Broken Frame.
Dan Silver: It still sing quite poppy, I think Martin's depth came a bit later.
Martin Gore: For me, it really does not work as a whole, because some of the songs I had written when I was 16 and we were reinventing them as electronic songs. Some of the songs I was making up in the studio, and I think it's, for me, probably our worst album.
Dave Gahan: It was so difficult for us at that time, in retrospect. First of all, we had lost our main songwriter. The 'second album syndrome' usually is that you get, like, slaughtered anyway, no matter what you do. And we kind of made this moody, odd-sounding record.
Danie Miller: Ad maybe by going with something like Leave In Silence we had quite a bit of a reaction to that, to go with something that's much more darker, and that was kind of the beginning of their so-called darker phase, really, Leave In Silence, that carried on to this day.
Martin Gore: I look back fondly on Leave In Silence. I think that was a turning point for us, and realised that maybe that was a way to go forward.
Chris Carr: Leave In Silence was kind of like a watershed: that's where things started to come together, where they started to take themselves fairly seriously.
Dave Gahan: We felt, I think, more comfortable in that mood, that was definitely where Martin was, melodically, and I've always said and I've always thought that Martin writes beautiful melodies, and lyrically, it's just a lot more melancholy.
Neil Ferris: Put it to one side: this is not a pop group, this is not a band that is making 3-minute crappy pop songs, this is a band that has got longevity, this is band that you want to go and see live.
Daniel Miller: I thought that Leave In Silence came together really easily, and we just got a groove going and it fell right instantly. And I think one of my favourite songs on the record is The Sun And The Rainfall. I love that song.
Andy Fletcher: It's a really good song, but I'm a big believer that songs that are put on the end of albums always get lost, and that's one particular really good song that I think gets lost because it's the last track of the album.
Dan Silver: They had led the audience to their space was the key. It was no problem. Now obviously, if their audience is deciding that they didn't like the tougher stuff, then they could have been in a lot of trouble. But they didn't, so they were fine.
Chris Carr: People started to see things that were happening, that they weren't weren't gonna disappear, that there was an intelligence at work, and that they were forging ahead in their own direction. But they are breaking into their own territory, at their own pace, and there's this innate sense of timing. It was becoming apparent that they were here to stay.

Sleeve notes [scanned by me]:



[Transcribed into text using OCR:]

‘A Broken Frame’ was Depeche Mode’s second album, but their first without Vince Clarke. When Vince left the other three felt very strongly about moving forward. There was never any discussion of splitting up, it was the opposite really — there was a determination to continue and be successful in a way, to show Vince they could do without him. Vince had been the main driving force in the band, both musically and career wise, and obviously that had to change. The new musical driving force was going to be Martin, while Fletch took the reins in a more managerial sense. The band grew up quite quickly after the split. It was all hands to the pump, and they suddenly had to take more responsibility. I wouldn’t exactly call it a blessing but what came out of it was very strong.
We knew Martin was a really strong songwriter. When Vince had written the songs he had a very clear idea of what he wanted them to sound like. Martin wasn’t quite as clear, and his demos were more basic — it was voice, Casio keyboard and foot tap! In some ways that was good because it was starting with a completely blank sheet, the song was open to go in any way we wanted it to go. But that was also quite challenging because we had so many choices and decisions to make. We were starting from a very different place than we did with ‘Speak & Spell’.
We recorded at Blackwing, the same studio where we made ‘Speak & Spell’. Martin had brought a PPG, one of the first digital keyboards. It was called a wave table synth and was pretty advanced for its time, but very unreliable. We got some sounds on it that we wouldn’t have otherwise got — the choir sound on ‘See You’ came from that. We were still very much using the same stuff we were for ‘Speak & Spell’. But we were also going into other territory, exploring new ground, and starting to use real sounds. I remember we got Blancmange in to do some on-the-spot marching for ‘Shouldn’t Have Done That’ because they were in the studio next door, making their record, and they were mates with Depeche Mode. Solidarity in electropop.
There was never any sense of trying to make ‘A Broken Frame’ sound the way Vince would have done, If anything Depeche Mode wanted to create new trademark sounds. They definitely wanted to move on from ‘Speak & Spell’. And Martin’s songs are musically more complex, so it naturally went in a different direction.
With ‘See You’, the song had been written and I started to get a fairly random bass line going on the sequencer, which is roughly how it ended up on the record. Then Martin embellished the track with more melody lines, but there was no sense of what the beat should be, we were just starting completely from scratch. We released ‘See You’ as a stand-alone single before the album and it became their biggest UK hit to date at that time. It went to Number Six.
The band’s image in the press was changing too. After ‘See You’ became a huge hit, they were suddenly perceived to be teen pop stars. They were grouped by the media with artists like Haircut 100, Altered Images and Kim Wilde. I remember the audiences at their shows were incredibly young at this point. They appeared on mainstream pop shows, Jim’ll Fix It and things like that. They were not totally comfortable with all that, it made them embarrassed, but they did it. It was their teenypop moment.
Alan Wilder joined on the ‘Broken Frame’ tour to play live, before the album was even made, but he wasn’t involved in the recordings. The initial idea was to hire him just to play the keyboard parts live. They played at the Ritz club in New York in January 1982, their first American show, which was fantastic and absolutely packed. Most of the people at the gig had come from out of town and they were cool young kids.
At the time a number of new alternative radio stations had started across the US, and they were all trying to create a new sound. They found this identity in bands like Depeche Mode, The Cure, Echo And The Bunnymen, New Order — even though there probably was not much crossover between those bands in the UK, there was in America. Basically they were interested in new English acts who were not rock bands. It was a completely underground thing, but these stations would later become crucial in the rise of alternative music.
‘A Broken Frame’ is a transitional record, and maybe not one of Depeche Mode’s strongest albums. But looking back it contains a lot of pointers for the future, especially on the more experimental side. Tracks Like ‘Monument’ and ‘Satellite’ are real road signs for the kind of sounds and ideas they would develop on later albums. We experimented a lot more than on ‘Speak & Spell’, which is good. Some of those experiments succeeded and some failed, as you might expect. But the band were still young, trying out new directions, finding their voice.
You can still hear that on this record. It sounds like a new beginning.
Daniel Miller
2017-06-30: Photobucket has disabled external image hosting, all scans will have to be re-uploaded on another site.