The Quietus: Western Pop In The Eastern Bloc – Depeche Mode: Monument

Sophia Deboick explores this aptly-named publication, a time capsule of sorts, by turns a personal history and listographic account of the unlikely importance of Basildon’s own Depeche Mode to the youth culture of the Eastern Bloc

Claiming to present ‘a new view of the pop-cultural significance of Depeche Mode’, ‘a comprehensive retrospective of the band’ and ‘three decades of music history in a polished synthesis of music and design’, Depeche Mode: Monument (Blumenbar, 2013) promises much. It only partially delivers on that promise, but it is much more than the simple discography it first appears to be, and is both an intensely personal book and one that gives an impression of how defining the band were for a generation of European youth. Born of a collaboration between graphic designer and record collector Dennis Burmeister (the owner of the majority of the objects featured in the book), and historian of youth culture Sascha Lange, who both grew up in an East Germany where the Depeche Mode cult was a significant subculture, the experiences and passions of these two men make for a truly unparalleled publication…

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