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4.6 out of 5 stars25
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 26 February 2002
"Some Great Reward" is the transitional album for Depeche Mode. Whilst the poppier edge of previous albums is still evident suddenly there was a darker more perverse side which was to showcase where the Mode were heading. In fact, at the time, the album was almost entitled "Perversions" but decided against so as not to put off the parents of 15 year old schoolgirls from buying it...evidence indeed that the Mode still had an eye on the teeny boppers whilst suddenly realising that they were outgrowing the polished pop of a few years earlier.
1984, the year of release, was a year where metal bashing industria was popular and "Some Great Reward" is no exception in that battered oil drums and sheets of metal from the local junk yard are used to beef up the normal Mode drum machine and percussions.
The sexually politicised "Master & Servant", in your face pop of "People Are People", the anti-Basildon opener "Something To Do" and the building site backdrop of "If You Want" best showcase the industrial feel of the album.
However, it's not all power induced metal bashing. "Lie To Me" is one of Depeche Mode's most sexy and funky moments to date whilst beautiful ballads such as "Somebody" and "It Doesn't Matter" (personally one of my favourite songs of all time...for personal reasons!) highlight the more tender side of the album.
The most intense moment comes with the contreversial but excellent God baiting "Blasphemous Rumours", apparently a true story and a fantastic way to finish a fantastic album.
This really was the starting point of Depeche Mode as we know them today and is well worth investigation.
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on 28 April 2009
I got into La Mode in 1985 when they really began to move away from their synth-pop roots after releasing their first 'Best of' album. 'Some Great Reward' is really the second of a two part transition that was begun with 'Construction Time Again'. Unlike many of their contemporaries, DM had the foresight to see where the 80s were going musically, and began the process of metamorphosing into stadia-filling electro warriors. This album contains gems such as the brooding 'Stories of Old', pervy classic 'Master and Servant', and the seminal 'Blasphemous Rumours'. These are the best tracks but there is not one dud on the CD and I can heartily recommend this album as a way of understanding Depeche Mode as they were and seeing what they would become. Sublime.
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on 20 December 2004
Following the politically motivated "Construction time again",SGR found Martin Gore exploring more personal waters, while the group were expanding and experimenting more with sound, determined never to repeat a sound twice.The industrial German bands still a strong motivator fuelling the fascination to sample anything that moved.
The album was recorded at Hansa studios in Berlin within sight of the Wall. Martin was also living there at the time and the songs written for SGR were obviously influenced by the city, as well as his growing fascination with wearing make up and dresses.
This album is a Stereo and sampling masterpiece, best appreciated with headphones The album showcases some of Martins most stunningly if simple lyrics. Some Great Reward spawned 4 singles the first of which, People are People although one of there more embarassing moments, was instrumental in breaking them into the American market in a big way. Standout tracks include, "Something to do" - a brill social statement reflecting small town angst (a la Basildon where the lads grew up) as well as "Blasphemous Rumours" the motivation for which according to Martin came from the co-incidence that during church service the first name on the prayer list would always end up dying.
I Also love the lyric on "Stories of old", simple and strong.
Martin sings two songs on the album "It doesnt matter" being my favourite and Somebody.
Highly recommended for fans of old and new. A true original as only the Modes can muster.
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on 26 September 2004
Another great album by the ever brilliant Mode. No fear at all in using technology regardless of how technical or simplistic.
Gore again outstanding with his songwriting abilities, Gahan as always superb in putting the feeling into each track as required.
Just excellent.
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VINE VOICEon 3 January 2007
again, as with my other reviews, i know it's the fans that are buying these so all I can say is....DONT HESITATE HERE EITHER.

some great reward was the 2nd album of the hansa trilogy that DM made, and although BLACK CELEBRATION was the pinnacle, this is an absolute corker.

But to the important parts. The songs are all superb on this - from something to do , to blasphemous rumours- and hearing them in 5.1 surround is an absolutely sublime experience...you really have to hear it to believe it.

I cant recommend how much of a difference the 5.1 remix makes here, as IMHO, the original mixes of this are a bit...flat.

superb re-rendering of a classic album.
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#1 HALL OF FAMEon 8 February 2003
This is the album where Depeche Mode really advanced, Daniel Miller & co refining the sound of previous album Construction Time Again (which had shown a Neubauten/Test Dept influence & had seen the Mode take up sampling). The album opens with the same sinister noise that recurs on the final track, a crashing life support system prior to a pulsing techno-beat- punishing synthetic rhythms & metallic noises blend with Martin Gore's bizarre lyrics ("You've Got Your Leather Boots On"?). 1985 saw the Metal-mix of this song, for the Shake the Disease single, one that shows an influence on Missy Elliot's Get Ur Freak On & Massive Attack's Special Cases.
Lie to Me is the glum second track, a classic pop song from Gore that fuses love with the backdrop of work- "So Lie to Me/Like they do in in the factory". The influence of Vince Clarke's early Mode tracks Ice Machine & Shout are clear. Single People are People is up next, another series of powerful metallic rhythms but probably one of the weakest lyrics Gore penned- not quite as bad as Human League's Lebanon or Culture Club's War Song, but getting there.
Gore takes lead vocals for It Doesn't Matter, which moves towards ambient territory but is not as succesful as it's sequel on 1986's Black Celebration would be. Stories of Old has more patchy lyrics, but the arrangement is fine- you can't hide a good pop song it seems! Somebody was a double-a-side with Blasphemous Rumours- Gore takes lead vocals again on this piano ballad with sinister lyrics & bizarre noises towards the end. A big favourite with fans, it is a definite highlight.
Top S&M Top-10 hit Master & Servant is up next, it's a lot like life you know. Alan Wilder offers up If You Want, which is quite nice musically but as poor as the worst lyrics here from Gore- Wilder wouldn't contribute any more songs in the future. Final track is Blasphemous Rumours, a downbeat industrial grope in the darkness that suggests Gore may have overloaded on Bergman films or Camus novels.
Some Great Reward is a fairly good album, though its best tracks recur on the Singles Box Set & 101- so not a vital purchase- unlike every Mode album from Black Celebration to Songs of Faith & Devotion.
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on 30 April 2015
Good to get this on 180g heavy weight remastered vinyl for the first time ... I've ordered 5 other Depeche Mode albums on the same format previously and wasn't disappointed with the sound quality ... Hoping to order their 1983 album, 'Construction a Time Again' soon .... Some good tracks on this album including a song that I would identify as being a typical LGBT anthem .... The song in question is 'People are People' suggesting that people are all equal and shouldn't be judged with difference .... The last track on the album is a bit more thought provoking... The song in question here is 'Blasphemous Rumours' .... Does God have a sense of humour then ? May we ask ... Great lyrics from the talented mind of Martin Gore ... This being his third album as chief songwriter since Vince Clarke abandoned ship on the band's 1981 album, 'Speak & Spell' .... The albums that were to follow Some a Great Reward,
released in 1984 were to become much more darker in both mood and sound !!
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on 3 October 2006
This is my favourite Depeche album. On this album, the framework the band would follow pretty much until now in terms of songwriting style was layed down. This was the one where they found their voice. From the start, the album sounds much harder and harsher. It is arguably their first album that flows comfortably. It is also not afraid to experiment, not only sonically but in terms of people's perception of what was "acceptable". It does have sonic similarities to "construction time again" but on this album they are not afraid to be molre challenging - it's hard to imagine that 22 years ago "Blasphemous Rumours" and "Master and Servant" shocked some radio 1 DJs, but they did.

As for a broken frame, the accompanying short film is very strong with lots of old archive footage - watch out for Alan complaining that Martin has gone on holiday while he mixes the album. The "berlin" effect is reflected nicely - Berlin was where Bowie recorded "Low" and these days it is known as a techno city. Nice to see that Depeche's "up the ante" album was tied into this vibe as well.
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VINE VOICEon 5 July 2011
I had forgotten just how much I love this album, every track brings back memories from Somebody (the song we danced to at our wedding) to Master & Servant (ooh what a naughty song), this album is EXCELLENT.
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on 26 January 2013
I remember on release of this - having it played in the house alot by my sister, I got to really like it. Although I didn't really follow DM by any means.
The album has a great "of the times" sound and was pretty different than most 80s bands.
Blasphemous rumours, master & servant and people are people being the big hits from the album, but that said, any of these tracks could stand as a single too.
This version has live tracks and remixes which also add to the overall package.
This for me is a stand out album of DM and shows the start of the direction they would eventually take.
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