Photographs and story by Sugarwolf
After nearly five years since its last world tour, Depeche Mode broke its silence on Thursday and embarked on a new musical journey in support of their latest album, “Memento Mori.”
The current effort marks the 15th studio album by the band – and its first without founding member Andy Fletcher.
Fletch’s passing has left an indelible imprint on remaining bandmates Dave Gahan and Martin Gore, and the aftermath of his loss appears to have been the genesis for Depeche Mode’s latest release: “Memento Mori” is a Latin phrase that translates to “remember that you (have to) die,” a theme that weaves its way through much of the album’s 12 tracks.
However much Fletch’s passing has diminished the band, its fans seem poised to embrace the new album, as well as delighted to be welcoming Gahan and Gore back to the stage. The Golden 1 date was the first on a three-leg tour that travels from North America to Europe and then back across the Atlantic. The show’s production includes a massive LED backdrop and a lengthy catwalk. In Sacramento, that gave many of the fans who paid-up for floor seats an opportunity to get up-close and personal with the performers. While much of Depeche Mode’s setlist felt dedicated to reflecting and paying tribute, these architects of synth-pop also reserved an adequate space for dancing; and Gahan readily used that space to show everyone he hasn’t lost his step.
The Memento Mori Tour will offer Depeche Mode fans a moment to reflect on our collective mortality, remember the ones we have lost, and continue to celebrate life – a mission that is deftly in-tune with the current zeitgeist.