From the beginning of their career Depeche Mode have been at the forefront of remix culture; creating their own classic extended mixes back in the early '80s and over the years amassing a collection of remixers of their songs that pretty much charts the history of cutting edge dance music.
Rooted in the UK's late 1970's New Romantic movement, Depeche Mode formed in 1980, and their pioneering, synthesizer-based sound went on to establish them as one of the most successful alt-rock groups ever. These electro-pop superstars loomed as large as cult heroes as they did as commercial heavies, and their wealth of singles and signature tracks ranged from energetic dance grooves to dramatic, moody, and industrial-tinged masterpieces. Depeche's originality of vision weathered personnel shifts and personal turmoil, influencing modern rock and synth-pop on a global level.
Songs of Faith and Devotion, an explosive Billboard #1 album when it was released in 1993, continued the band's winning streak and introduced the Top 40 smash "I Feel You". The album also features the classic tracks "Condemnation", "Walking in My Shoes", and "In Your Room".
Songs of Faith and Devotion finds the band reinventing itself somewhat. Not that it'd been exactly treading water, but its last several albums had explored and refined a particular aesthetic of dark lyrical themes and minor-key synthesizer atmospherics. However, in 1993's grunge era, lyrical mopeyness was endemic and keyboards were rapidly becoming out of date. Wisely, Depeche Mode sought to change both elements of its music, not just one. Incorporating guitars--most notably on the oddly blues-derived "I Feel You"--and other instruments into its songs was a canny move, but the stroke of genius is in Martin Gore's lyrics, which largely abandon the bleakness of the band's more recent work in favor of cautious optimism and spiritual questions. In an age of irony, the real surprise was that this album's title was not particularly ironic.
1. I Feel You
2. Walking In My Shoes
4. Mercy In You
6. In Your Room
7. Get Right With Me
9. One Caress
10. Higher Love