The singles collection is split into 2 CD’s, 81 – 85 is a single CD whilst 86 – 98 is a double. The split shows the two contrasting yet complimentary periods of development in the life of Depeche Mode. From early eighties ‘Smash Hits’ pop band to globe trotting stadium band in the late eighties and nineties. Of all the bands that sprung up in that period, few have survived the rigors of popular fads and new faces. dm 81 – 85 covers the first 4 prolirc years when the band went through line-up changes, losing Vince Clarke, releasing some 15 singles.
All the songs on this album are very synonymous with the period, and there is a quality of naivete and untainted joy in the songs. dm 86 – 98 tracks the bands route into mega stardom world tour stadium rock. The music whilst retaining aspects of it’s earlier pop roots, became somewhat darker and more powerful. Gone were the ‘twee’ lightweight synth tunes, in had come heavy pounding bass beats and samples. You become aware of how successful Depeche Mode have been over the last 17 years.