Milestones, Video — May 9, 2012 at 7:54 am

Milestones: Depeche Mode’s Dave Gahan is 50 today — watch 7 full concerts, 1981-2009

Today we mark the 50th birthday of Depeche Mode frontman Dave Gahan, and as the group begins work on a new album and plans for a 2013 world tour, let’s look back at the man’s, and band’s, 30-year career. Below you’ll find seven full Depeche Mode concerts for your viewing pleasure, filmed on tours in 1981, 1985, 1986, 1993, 2001, 2006 and 2009 (alas, full shows from 1990’s World Violation Tour remain maddeningly elusive).


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, 9/26/81


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, Rockscene Festival, Brest, France, 7/13/85


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, London, England, April 1986


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, Miami, FL, USA 10/2/93


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, Paris, France, 10/9-10/01


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, Rock am Ring Festival, German, 6/5/06


VIDEO: Depeche Mode, Barcelona, Spain, 11/20-21/09







  1. One of the greatest frontmen of all time, absolute legend, happy birthday Dave :)

  2. Sidenote, there is still no denying just what a complete knob Fletcher looked in those early days!

  3. The perfect voice for a great band. Happy Birthday Dave!

  4. Happy Birthday Dave!

  5. …Watching “Leave In Silence” from their 1985 concert got me all frothed up at first: “here’s Andy! Actively playing bass keyboard!” Then with the not so much. So, dude was just posing, what, the entire history of the band? I’ve wanted Andy to be an actual useful member of the band (musically) second only to Alan staying in the band. The video quality is horrible, but you can see just how much Alan brings to the table in the live setting. I never knew he co-sang a bunch of those songs! …From DM’s best era ever… 1981-1985. (Add argument how SOFAD or the crapola from the last 12 years is somehow way better below. And be wrong.) o_0

  6. okay 1986 is part of their “good” era too. Clearly the fact that synth technology got exponentially better every six months helped.

    …And there’s Andy, dancing like a ninny. Somebody please verify the few moments he looks like he’s concentrating it’s because he is actually doing something. Please.

  7. The best period of DM is 86-93, SOFAD is their best album imo.

  8. Happy Birthday! Could not be happier than to recognize my all time favorite vocalist! In Houston 1988 you were so completely wonderful. While I sat star struck and befuddled you and the rest of the band were calling ME talented! Once in a lifetime memory as you all signed yourselves on the portrait I had drawn. I’ve been to all your concerts here beforehand and after and was stunned at how great you guys are every time! Thanks for being you!

  9. Fletcher isnt really a musician, the band have actually admitted over the years that he is in fact a non-musician and was more involved with the management side of things in the earlier days. So it begs the question, why exactly was he included in the concerts at all? He doesnt play anything, in fact Dave Gahan is known to have taunted him during a show on one particular tour, he approached Fletcher’s keyboard and did a Hulk Hogan style cup to the ear as if to say “is this guy really doing anything over here?'”, Fletch got annoyed and they had a row backstage afterwards. I obviously dont have anything personal against Fletch but its beyond me why he was ever part of the studio, stage or even photoshoots as he is not an active or creative member of the band.

  10. DM play the same greatest hits every tour, they put on a good show, but how many times do we have to see these songs? They need to shake up the setlist this time around in ’13

  11. I have to disagree with you there Joe, Depeche Mode always play at least 9 songs from their current album and quite a few album tracks, they only really play the hits towards the end of the set. They are still a vital band that attract worldwide attention when they release a new album. The same cannot be said for bands such as The Cure or New Order.

    • Hey Paul, you are wrong about what you said about The Cure. They do indeed switch up their live show sets. Just look at the shows they played in Sydney and New York this past fall. Way different in set lists. As for Depeche, it would be nice to see them play more of the the older tunes. I would love to see them play “The Landscape is Changing” and yes, I know it’s an Alan song, but nonetheless it would be great to see them play that live. Cheers Mate!

  12. When i mentioned the Cure i wasnt refering to their live sets (as boring as they are), rather their lack of vitality these days compared with Depeche Mode.

  13. I agree with DM needing to shake up their setlists….I go to about 5-6 shows per tour and they consistently play many of their big hits: ETS (of course), NMLDA, Policy of Truth, I feel You, etc etc. They have SOOOOOO many great album tracks and B-Sides they could whip out – but they don’t. I wish I knew why. I was really shocked and surprised when they added Photographic during the second leg of the Playing the Angel tour….It was incredible! I wish they would go deeper and especially add some B-Sides like Happiest Girl or My Joy or Sea of Sin, etc. I saw the Cure in LA this past November and not only was it incredible to hear those first three albums live, they then added in some old obscure B-sides! awesome!

  14. Any band that feels the need to play their first three albums + its b-sides in their entirety are basically admitting that they are finished.

    • WELL, I’m not asking DM to do the “blahblah” album in its entirety, BUT I would love to hear some more obscure stuff, more album tracks. B-sides (which in DM’s case are SO GOOD). More stuff off Ultra!

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