Depeche Mode Execute A Masterclass On the Memento Mori Tour

Depeche Mode Execute A Masterclass On the Memento Mori Tour

- By Ramon Gonzales

The duo of Dave Gahan and Martin Gore proved legendary, capping a week of festivities in Los Angeles with a stellar showing that underscored the band's iconic catalog and undisputed legacy.

Trekking in support of their 15th studio album, Memento Mori, perennial hitmakers Depeche Mode have spent nearly all of 2023 spanning the globe, completing three international legs of their Memento Mori World Tour. In addition to the significance of the run supporting such a landmark release, the tour took on the added magnitude of being the first outing since the tragic passing of beloved collaborator, Andy Fletcher. 

Wrapping up the most recent leg of their triumphant globe trot, Martin Gore and Dave Gahan held court for what became a full week of DM festivities in Los Angeles - first for two sold out nights at The Kia Forum in Inglewood, then a sold out weekend at Arena in Downtown Los Angeles.

The homecoming of sorts even included the city christening at Los Angeles City Hall where local officials declared December 13th, 2023 to officially be Depeche Mode Day - marking a new tradition and underscoring the band's longstanding relationship with the City of Angels. 

As for the band's first night at Arena, there is an element of pageantry that vaults Depeche Mode into a category all their own. Opening with selections from their latest album, singles in "My Cosmos Is Mine" and "Wagging Tongue" offer evidence that the tandem of Gahan and Gore dare to explore new creative terrain as songwriters and composers. Adding in "Speak to Me" and "Ghosts Again" - Depeche Mode managed to integrate new classics into their set of greatest hits seamlessly, with songs new and familiar prompting the same pop from the capacity arena. 

Among some of the greatest entries in the lexicon of pop, the quality of Depeche Mode's catalog is undisputedly evergreen. Sourcing singles from various eras of the band, essentials like "It's No Good", "Policy of Truth", an anthemic rendition of "Everything Counts", "Black Celebration" and an emotive "World In My Eyes" dedicated to the memory of Andy Fletcher resonated as colossal - invoking a sense of ceremony with Gore and Gahan at the helm. 

Arguably the band's most effective selection on the evening, Gahan proved commanding on "Stripped" - compelling an entire arena to remain fixed, put their phones down and bask in the glow that radiated from the stage and blanketed the arena. 

However, the set wasn't all pomp and circumstance. In fact, one of the most memorable instances on the night was an impromptu one, stemming from a fight in the crowd that forced Gahan to halt in the middle of "Never Let Me Down Again". Crouching down to address the situation, Gahan proved eternally cool asserting his voice of reason, urging security to calm down and defusing the situation with a good ribbing, There’s enough shit going on in the world without you guys.”

The crowd roared, then roared louder when the band restarted the track from the top. Completing their victory lap with "Personal Jesus" it was apparent that the audience was bearing witness to something legendary. Depeche Mode remain definitive and this night, was testament to that. 

See the gallery of images from the Los Angeles stop of the Memento Mori World Tour below. All images courtesy of Andrew Bernstein Associates/ Juan Ocampo/ Arena. 




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