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Depeche Mode (Photo by Simon White)

Depeche Mode's joy

Back with their new album Dave Gahan dishes all on its R 'n' B flavours
04 March 2009 - Depeche Mode have been busy putting the finishing touches to their new album, Sounds Of The Universe, which frontman Dave Gahan said was a pleasure to make.

It's their first record since 2005's Playing The Angel and is due for release in the UK on 20 April.

Speaking about his band, he said: "It was a joy to work together. It's rare that you'll find me saying that."

The singer revealed they revisited technology used on their early material and drew on R 'n' B influences.

Speaking to BBC 6 Music's Steve Lamacq about the new record, Gahan explained: "You know, usually, it could be quite a struggle and different things happened during different albums but this one; it's like we showed up to work, we had a great team, Ben Hillier produced the album. Everybody seemed to just have fun doing it."

He admitted getting back into the studio after a break felt strange: "It's like coming back after your summer holiday, a bit uncomfortable. You've got to see what's going on a bit, try and catch up, but it is always a new thing getting back together again."
"There's definitely R 'n' B flavours that have come into this rhythmically."
Dave Gahan

As for drawing on their past sounds Gahan said: "The use of analogue synthesisers and analogue drum machines is something that we kind of explored again making this record.

"I hear it, there's a simplicity of it and there's something about the warmth that you get in analogue synthesisers, it's unpredictable and will never do the same thing twice."

Unlikely influences Speaking about the album's inspiration, Gahan continued: "There's definitely R 'n' B flavours that have come into this rhythmically. It trawls along in that way but I would say it's more of a rant than a rap.

"This is as close as it gets, but sometimes a lot of that rhythmical flavour comes into it. We use a lot of those blues-based or R 'n' B-based rhythms."

The first single from the quintessential electro-pop band's twelfth offering is titled Wrong, and is out now.

"What people miss actually, quite often, is the black humour underlying in there," said Gahan about the track.

"It's definitely in Wrong...It's like a 13 year-old ranting on at his mother about everything that she's going on to him about to do, and he's not doing right. A response to life."

The 80's legends embark on The Tour Of The Universe in May which includes one sold out UK date at London's O2 Arena on 30 May.

Georgie Rogers

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