Depeche Mode

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AllMusic Review by

Combining a variety of mixes from the overseas singles for these two tracks, Depeche's American company put four of each track on this release. There's also a fine CD-ROM bonus -- all four videos made for Ultra, all but one directed by longtime Mode visual artist Anton Corbijn with his usual style and skill. The disc starts with the straight album version of "Home," an excellent Gore-sung ballad with a killer string arrangement and concluding guitar. It's a perfect demonstration as to why Gore's own singing abilities are the secret weapon of the group, whether on lead or on backing vocals. Three remixes of the track then follow, starting with Dan Grigson's "Grantby" mix, which bases itself on the slow orchestrated conclusion of the song, adds a shuffling new beat, and lets Gore's vocal progress through the steady build of the track. Warp Records avant-techno legends LFO contribute the "Meant to Be" mix, giving it a distinctly calm Kraftwerk-styled feel, though with a more modern sounding beat, while whoever does the "Noodles and the Damage Done" mix turns it into a rock/jungle crossover, and surprisingly well at that. The remaining tracks are the "Useless" remixes; none exactly replicate the original's combination of slow shimmer and Tackhead rhythm-section crunch, but find their own path. CJ Bolland tackles the first two remixes, starting with the "Ultrasonar Extended" mix -- it's a fairly straightforward beat he uses, sounding more like the live drums from the song sampled and looped than anything else, but growing louder and fiercer as the song progresses. His "Funky Sub" mix, in contrast, is a more explicitly electronic and quicker mix, though often it suggests the intense speed rather than actually putting into practice, a nice touch. Austrian duo Kruder and Dorfmeister provide a "Session" mix combining a strong beat and slabs of vocal echo with the original bassline, along with an amusing lounge/jazz ending. The "Escape From Wherever" mix concludes the disc, with lots of flanging and a generally distanced feeling even when the volume suddenly cranks up halfway in -- nicely mysterious all around.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 5:46
2 3:57
3 4:07
blue highlight denotes track pick