Album Review: Depeche Mode – Memento Mori (Columbia/Mute)

By: Jesse Striewski

It truly speaks volumes for a band with over four decades worth of experience to still be releasing viable music their fans actually want to hear. But on their fifteenth studio outing (and first since 2017’s Spirit), that’s exactly what Depeche Mode have achieved here with Memento Mori.

Lead-off single “Ghosts Again” has the uncanny ability to sound eerily familiar as though one has heard it before. Its black and white video finds core members Dave Gahan and Martin Gore wandering aimlessly through cemeteries or playing chess on rooftops; one view of it and it’s easy to fall in love with the band all over again.

“My Cosmos is Mine” is far from the strongest track to start the album off with, but things pick up quickly, with tracks like “My Favourite Stranger,” “Never Let Me Go,” and “Don’t Say You Love Me” all invoking that old Depeche Mode sound fans have grown to know and love.

I don’t honestly know how they do it, maintaining popularity when so many other bands from their era (such as The Human League or A Flock of Seagulls) have all but fallen by the wayside when it comes to releasing new material. I myself was even a bit skeptical going in, but it’s so blatantly obvious what masters of their crafts they still are after all this time, which I suppose is what makes Depeche Mode so appealing after all these years.

Rating: 4/5 Stars

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