Delta Machine

Delta Machine, Depeche Mode’s 13th studio album is already a hot contender for the coveted Album of the Year. And there’s a very simple reason for that – there’s nothing new here.
I’ve said before that  “old” bands should stick to what made them popular, and I’m happy to stand by that statement. Straying too far from their roots invariably disappoints the existing fan base, when they don’t need to take risks because they actually have nothing to prove. No such problems with Delta Machine: this could easily have been released alongside Violator back in 1990. It’s perfect, vintage Depeche Mode: dark, moody, introspective, soulful electronica.

There’s lots of noise being made about Heaven, but I actually prefer this live version to the one on the album.

And while it’s all good, for me, the standout tracks include My Little Universe, with Gahan’s repeated, compelling assertions of grandeur gradually being overrun by heavy electronic noise, and the deliberately awkward, unapologetic dischordance in Secret To The End.
And then there’s Broken, which is (in my humble opinion) quite possibly the best song Depeche Mode have ever done. And I know that’s a big claim after 33 years of their existence, but it really is perfect. It’s on repeat. A lot.

If you have never been a Depeche Mode fan, this is probably not going to be for you. But if you still hark back to those heady days of tracks like Personal Jesus and I Feel You, wow, you’re in for a treat.

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