Music Reviews

Title: Playing The Angel
Format: CD
Label: Mute (@)
Rated: *****
Going beyon the imho horrible cover, PLAYING THE ANGEL is a fantastic album. I know that each time that Depeche Mode release something I'm used to say the same but, if "Exciter" was mid exciting, this new album sees the band reviving their old energy that was lying somewhere under the embers. Just take a little bit of "Ultra", "Violator" and "Exciter" and you'll someway have the sound of PLAYING THE ANGEL. The dark ballads (the six minutes long "I want it all" which has a certain electro experimental closing part that will get remixers mad of joy, "Damaged people" and "The darkest star" that is another six minutes lenght track which closes the album with its slow crawling rhythm) and the dancey tunes are well balanced and also Dave and Martin performances are good as always. This time there's only one instrumental track "Introspectre" which is an albient one that lasts less than two minutes. The next single in my opinion should be "Lillian" rather than "A pain that I'm used to", a track that has the same potential of "I feel loved". Think that after the first thirty seconds I was singing it in my head! The sound is more powerful than the last album and there are more distorted synth lines an less ibm sounds. The guitar il less invasive and sometimes (like on the first single "Precious") it sounds like a keyboard. The songwriting found a balance between the different influences that the band showed on the old albums: soul (check the melodic vocal lines of "John the revelator", rock / blues (check Martin's guitar riffs), ambient (the different pads used on each track). Generally the melodic lines are more dark and catchy but without sounding too melancholic. If you liked "Ultra" you'll definitely love this one. It will be released also a deluxe package of the album with a dvd which contains the 5.1 mix of it plus the "Precious" video a gallery and other stuff. Check our news to read more about this.

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