Depeche Mode - Songs Of Faith & Devotion (Vinyl)

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Songs of Faith and Devotion is the eighth studio album by English electronic band Depeche Mode. It was first released on 22 March 1993 in the United Kingdom on Mute Records. The album incorporated a more aggressive, darker rock-oriented tone than its predecessor Violator (1990), largely influenced by the emerging alternative rock and grunge scenes in the United States. To support the album, Depeche Mode embarked on the fourteen-month-long Devotional Tour, the largest tour they had ever undertaken to that date (which almost killed them). Includes the singles 'I Feel You', 'Walking In My Shoes', 'Condemnation' & 'In Your Room'.
Recording the album and the subsequent tour exacerbated growing tensions and difficulties within the band, prompting Alan Wilder to quit, making this album the final one with him as a band member. The ordeal had exhausted their creative output following the enormous success they had enjoyed with Violator, leading to rumours and media speculation that the band would split. Depeche Mode subsequently recovered from the experience, and released Ultra in 1997.

LP pressing on gatefold 180-gram vinyl.


Songs of Faith and Devotion has sometimes been called Depeche Mode's grunge album. While that's hardly an accurate description, it's easy to see how that impression arose, and it's another truly great effort from the band. Depeche Mode had taken the dark synthpop sound as far as they could and wisely decided go in a new direction. The album is hardly grunge, but there are more elements of rock than on earlier albums, with more guitars and live drums on most of the album. If anything, though, they were letting their darker side take over even more, for what is really even a darker sound than on Violator and certainly not one that sounds of its time. While it is rather different from their previous albums, the songwriting is still high quality definitely has the elements that made Depeche Mode great in the first place, even though the arrangements are very different. The biggest highlight for me is the Martin Gore sung and orchestral "One Caress, " which is overflowing with emotion, but there's truly a variety of material on display. On "Condemnation" and "Judas," the band takes on elements of gospel and soul, and there is also more straightforward gothic rock on "Walking in My Shoes" and "In Your Room," and even a straight-ahead alt rock oriented song in "I Feel You," which comes the closest to warranting the grunge label. I'm not sure where this falls exactly in the Depeche Mode canon. It's not quite up to the par set by Violator, but honestly, just anything would have fallen short. For me, Songs of Faith and Devotion is just as recommended as their best material of the 80s. I have to admit that the less synth and less pop oriented approach here is simply not my preferred style for the band, but the songwriting really was most certainly still there at this point. In retrospect, this was the last hurrah for Alan Wilder, and it is certainly a great showcase for his musicianship with his forays into live drumming proving a wild success, although it sadly marks the end of his tenure with the group and the end of an excellent run of albums. While they would still have great songs after this, Songs of Faith and Devotion is the last truly great album from the group, at least as of this writing, but what a way to go.

By: MoeHartman.

A1 I Feel You
A2 Walking In My Shoes
A3 Condemnation
A4 Mercy In You
A5 Judas
B1 In Your Room
B2 Get Right With Me
B3 Rush
B4 One Caress
B5 Higher Love

Catalogue Number: STUMM106

Record Label: Mute Records / Sony