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Time to take some risks Dave
on 11 March 2009
After a solo debut album, Paper Monsters, that set itself apart from Depeche Mode's current output by putting a guitar up front, Mode front man Dave Gahan has, with this follow-up, veered back toward the dark rock grooves and electronic buzzing we've come to expect from this Essex boy.
Hourglass is as tasteful, professional, and as sophisticated as you'd expect, and Gahan's world-weary sonorous tones breathe new life into well-worn Mode themes of religion, addiction and self-doubt. Unfortunately there is no sense of risk here; of pushing the boundaries, and this is an ultimately `safe' release from Gahan.
I don't doubt that those who have followed Gahan and Depeche Mode for years will find things to like in Hourglass and enjoy hearing him continue to struggle with the topics he and his lyrics always do; he's eloquent and interesting, and I have no doubt that he's feeling every word and note here.