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Music for the Masses

Depeche Mode Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 9.56 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Music for the Masses + Violator + Black Celebration (CD & DVD)
Price For All Three: CDN$ 44.86

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Product Details

1. Never Let Me Down Again
2. The Things You Said
3. Strangelove
4. Sacred
5. Little 15
6. Behind The Wheel
7. I Want You Now
8. To Have And To Hold
9. Nothing
10. Pimpf
11. Agent Orange
12. Never Let Me Down Again (Aggro Mix)
13. To Have And To Hold (Spanish Taster)
14. Pleasure, Little Treasure

Product Description


This album is a culmination of Depeche Mode's middle-period experimentation. More informed by Goth than techno, it is still anchored by plenty of the larger-than-life-baritone melodrama so distinctive of David Gahan's vocals. The most experimental track is "Pimpf"--a song that heave-hoes along with the synthesized emulation of a Russian men's choir. Although nowhere near fast enough to be danceable, the commanding "Never Let Me Down" ranks as the best single on the track, with the most hummable "Strangelove" coming in at a close second. Each song is a praiseworthy accomplishment, but the singles here set off the experimental tracks, making the album seem thematically schizophrenic. --Beth Bessmer

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Never Lets Me Down Jan. 11 2004
Format:Audio CD
Sandwiched chronologically between the epic gothdom of Black Celebration and the massive popular appeal of Violator, Music For The Masses sometimes gets lost in the shuffle of Depeche Mode albums. It didn't have any major stateside hits, and is not as instantly catchy as some of DM's other work. But it is no less a flawless Depeche Mode album, best appreciated by those who know the band's work intimately.
The experimental sounds DM had been flirting with throughout the eighties all show up in force on Music For The Masses. And as with Some Great Reward and Black Celebration, these songs continue to sound more organic and less like they were pounded out on your mom's Casio keyboard. (One need only compare a song as complex and hypnotizing as "Pimpf" with, for example, the twittering and bleeping "New Life." DM are a totally different band in a short span of years.) Entire songs here are created using samples -- from a choir, a guitar(!), and maybe a spoon against a glass, in addition to a few piano riffs. As with Black Celebration, frequently the songs here meld and morph into each other so that you only know where the tracks separate from one another because the CD player tells you where. The end result is an album that frequently seems more at home in the nineties than in the eighties. Much of this album seems like a predecessor to Enigma's MCMXC a.d. or The Orb's Adventures Beyond The Ultraworld, albums whose composers no doubt would point to DM as inspiration for their work.
What I have grown to like best on M4tM are the songs that actually did not become singles. While "Never Let Me Down Again" soars high and pleases crowds, "Things You Said" quietly sinks into your skin like frostbite with Martin's chilling vocal delivery and the somber meandering of a few icy synth notes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Take one step back and go forward 2 April 13 2004
Format:Audio CD
Depeche Mode hit the big time here. If any album made Americans and any non-believers believe in them, this is the one. It has all the typical DM features that you would expect in a DM album. It may not be one of my favourites ( CTA, BC and Ultra and Violator get that honour ) but make no mistake it's not far away from them.
If you are thinking about buying this you should do so now
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dark Beautiful Romantic April 29 2004
Format:Audio CD
I was in my early teens when my home city went crazy about Depeche Mode, and this particular album. However, I was a true metalhead at that time, and anything lighter than Slayer was absolutely out of my sphere of interest. It was much later, through revolutionary "One Second" by Paradise Lost, through Depeche Mode's guitar-driven "Ultra", that I came to appreciate "Music for the Masses" like this album fully deserved.
No matter what some say, to me this is one of those perfect albums in my collection. It's perfect because it doesn't have a single weak track in it. The songwriting is excellent, and every song has its distinctive mood and melody, that will sound in your head for hours. This music is a blend of gothic depressed darkness and melodic accessibility and imaginative rhythming of synth-pop. But it never gets repetitive, because the variety of the songs is so good. From a danceable "Never Let Me Down Again", to grandiose "Sacred", to melodic melancholy of "Little 15", to disturbing instrumental piece "Pimpf", this record has got it all. The band demonstrates imaginative use of synthesizers, and David Gahan's voice strikes with depth and sensuality. This album is not actually dancing music, but rather is intended to be appreciated through thought. Intellectual electronic music, if you wish.
I think that through these years "Music for the Masses" managed to keep its appeal and beauty, and unless you hate this particular genre, you'll like it, just like I did eventually.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Sirens are calling March 19 2004
Format:Audio CD
I always thought this was, cover art and title-wise, the most cleverly artistic of all the Depeche Mode albums. Consider, after all, the thought of Emergency Warning Sirens as the creator of Music For The Masses; when they played, everyone listened. They "danced" in a peculiar dark way as well, if you'd consider the mass hustle to a shelter a motion of mass dancing. But in just that one picture and image, Depeche Mode caught their essence perfectly. Sounds that could attract attention and instill dread, curiosity and moving bodies.
"Music For The Masses" was a step more poppish than "Black Celebration," but then, how could it not be? "Black Celebration" is DM's darkest hour, and the rejuvenated focus on dance beats lifted the sound of "Masses." On the other hand, the songs of sexual dominance and submission ("Strangelove" and "Never Let Me Down Again"), sexual confusion ("Little 15" and "Behind The Wheel") and religion ("Sacred" and "To Have and to Hold") are just as strong as any the band has previously explored, even if they are more hooky and you can find yourself singing along.
I must also say I've always been put off by the CD's "Bonus tracks." I've always viewed them as a distraction from my original album version (Yes, I had this on a long player once!) "Agent Orange" and the remix of "Never Let Me Down Again" are the kind of annoyances that you don't mind on a CD single, but aren't the kind of material that stands the test of time in an album format. Perhaps someday when Rhino gives us the inevitable remastered reissues, they will treat DM like they did Elvis Costello and relegate the singles and B's to a second disc. One can hope.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Minimalist Music Standing the Test of Time
When initially released a couple of decades ago, I found MFTM being a rather bleak album. Even the singles were somewhat low-key arrangements of what I still thought were great... Read more
Published on Oct. 31 2007 by gnagfloW
5.0 out of 5 stars THIS IS HOW THE mid80s SOUNDED - AND THEY SOUNDED GREAT!!!
MTV had been already established as mainstream, the BOSS was getting soft in the Tunnel of Love, BON JOVI were more about the hair than ever - and the British invented Alternative... Read more
Published on Oct. 30 2007 by NeuroSplicer
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection Once Again...
This ranks up there right with Some Great Reward and Black Celebration, though I don't think it is quite as good. It does, however, contain my favorite DM song ever, Little 15. Read more
Published on March 29 2004 by Analog
5.0 out of 5 stars By far, the best Depeche Mode album
It contains the autentic Depeche sound, with the gratest songs they ever created. If you never heard any song of Depeche Mode, give a try to this amazing disc, and you will not be... Read more
Published on Jan. 17 2004 by Andres Cordoba
4.0 out of 5 stars Sometimes lets me down
I find it interesting that while Music for the Masses is such a landmark in DM's discography and touring career, it is at the same time the least listened to album of my... Read more
Published on Dec 11 2003 by The Blue Raja
4.0 out of 5 stars For once, the album title doesn't lie!
This really is music for the masses. Although the title was intended to be tounge-in-cheek, it's on the mark. If you've seen the film '101,' you know what I'm talking about. Read more
Published on Dec 2 2003
2.0 out of 5 stars Music for the Masses???
When I first time heard Never Let Me Down Again, I loved it.
These days I am still loving it because it's one of DM's strongest and finest songs. Read more
Published on Sept. 3 2003 by Juha Ylinen
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome!
This is a truly awesome CD from one of the best bands of all time! My absolute favorite song on here is the bizarre anthem "Never Let Me Down Again" followed by the terrifying "To... Read more
Published on June 15 2003
2.0 out of 5 stars Music for the Masses?
Ok, there's two good songs that everybody like, "Strangelove" and my favourite song "Never Let Me Down Again". Read more
Published on May 26 2003 by Reijo Piippula
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