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Vince Clarke Reunites with Depeche Mode

Depeche Mode / foto Tomáš Martinek

Erasure/ Yazoo songwriter Vince Clarke revealed this week that he’s been working on a techno album for six months with Depeche Mode writer Martin Gore, some 30 years after Clarke quit the band.

Speaking to the Quietus, Clarke said the two met recently for a ‘few beers’ then started making an album soon after, collaborating remotely via email and file sharing.

"Out of the blue I got an email from [Clarke] just saying, 'I'm interested in making a techno album. Are you interested in collaborating?'" Martin Gore explained, "He said, 'No pressure, no deadlines,' so I said, 'OK.'

Depeche Mode formed in 1980 having all grown up together around Chelmsford, Essex, with Vince Clarke initially being the main songwriter and delivering their earliest hits.

After quitting in 1981 (after reportedly becoming disillusioned with their musical direction), he offered them the track Only You as a parting gift the track, though when Depeche Mode rejected it, turned to local punk personality Alison Moyet to record the song. Chatting to Skrufff in 2008, Alison remembered vividly how they connected.

“I knew the Depeche lot from school; me and (Martin) Fletcher and Martin Gore were in the same year at school and we had a few classes together, Maths and German. Vince went to a different school so I knew him less than the others, and Dave (Gahan) I knew from college,” she recalled.

“Vince was still raw after having left Depeche Mode and you can imagine how he felt on his own after being part of a gang with his mates. He’d written a song ‘Only You’ that he wanted to record and he knew of me in Basildon, because he’d come from the same town,” she said.

“My guitar player in the punk band I was playing in at the time was his best mate and I was a bit of a face locally. He was looking for a very different voice than he’d found in Dave Gahan and he knew of me so he asked me to demo this song with him. I demo-ed it in his flat and he called me up a week later saying he’d played it to the record company and they wanted to record and release it,” says Alison.

The track went on to become a massive worldwide hit, while Martin Gore in turn took over song-writing duties for Depeche Mode, becoming even more successful, for the ensuring 30 year period.

More recently, Vince Clarke remixed Depeche Mode’s 80s classic Behind the Wheel for the band’s remix album (Depeche Mode's Remixes 2: 81-11) delivering the stand-out track from the entire package (click below to listen) Vince Clarke Remix of Behind the Wheel (Soundcloud) (Behind the Wheel (live) the original version)

Jonty Skrufff:

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