Depeche Mode played TD Garden – 10/31

Goth/darkwave/synthpop legends Depeche Mode headlined the Garden on Halloween.


Any given Halloween in a music scene is pretty much guaranteed to deliver a wealth of cover sets, costumed band members and other spooky amusements, but it’s rarer thing for a major tour attuned to the holiday to actually land in your town on October 31st. But such was the case for Boston and Depeche Mode’s Memento Mori trek this year – cause for celebration amongst local goths of all stripes.

From their New Romantic beginnings through the alt-rock and industrial flirtations of their later records, Depeche Mode have remained an enduring force in the electronic and gothic landscapes for over forty years. Vocalist Dave Gahan and guitarist/keyboardist/singer Martin Gore – the band’s remaining official members following the death of co-founder Andy Fletcher last year – released their 15th LP (from which the tour draws its name) in March, and despite being preceded by the challenging loss of a friend and bandmate, it’s a project that holds up among their strongest.

Memento Mori‘s opening pair of tracks also kicked off Tuesday night’s show, which saw Gahan and Gore joined by longtime touring members Christian Eigner and Peter Gordeno to bring a career-spanning setlist to life. The foursome’s staging wasn’t an elaborate production by arena standards (and sadly we didn’t get any costumes or, I dunno, onstage cobwebs to mark the holiday), but more importantly the band sounded lush and lively across the old songs and the new. Watching longtime foils Gahan and Gore at work was a joy to behold, with the latter’s cool, coiled stage presence contrasting the former’s full-on rockstar strut. And the song selection naturally brought the goods, highlighted by some personal favorites including the moody “Black Celebration,” an intimate arrangement of “Strangelove” handled by Gore, and a stack of tracks from the band’s 1990 classic Violator. All in all, a pretty ideal way to spend a Halloween night.

I missed openers DIIV due to candy distribution duties, but check out a sizable gallery of DM’s set below.