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4.2 out of 5 stars
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4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 19 July 2017
Another searching for themselves album following on from the debut Speak and Spell. It has some deficiencies being a little slow, but invaluable acquisition to a DM fan. The remastered version certainly brings through their distinct sound, adding to the value of each track.
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on 13 April 2016
Well I had this album bought for me age 14 vinyl now have the CD version love this depeche mode amazing thank you.
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VINE VOICEon 26 February 2007
i never bought the album when it came out..i bought the 3 singles and loved and adored them..still do!!!

how does it stand up as an album as on sacd!

before i start i prefer my depeche mode with a pop sound rather than the grunge/goth/rock of later albums...all respect to those fans!

the overall sound on sacd is brilliant..crisp, clear and with the odd bit of tinkle which you miss on the regular cds...

the standout tracks are the three singles "the meaning of love" and "see you" are perfect pop songs! "see you" especially is a pop masterpeice of its time! i loved it then and i love it now! "leave in silence" was a big change from the first two singles but its a brilliant track and deserved to do much better than it did in the charts!

as to the rest of the tracks..."the sun and the rainfall" and "my secret garden" stand out and "the sun" could have been a great single!

the rest of the tracks are ok but nothing special but still good!

if you love 80s electronic music this is a must!

i havent yet listened to it in 5.1 or watched the dvd but its great value when if they had wanted to cash in on their fans they could have released the two separately! a lovely package..a great cd!
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on 4 October 2006
When I hear this album, it really takes me back to my first concert. I went to see them at Hammersmith Odean 25th October 1982. Fantastic night which is still with me to this day. This album is a lot darker than Speak and Spell. This was to map the future direction for depeche, from poppy pop songs to a more darker serious pop song. This album just gels, it has some awesome synth sounds plus the laid back soft vocals with the odd deep harsh chords from Dave work like a dream. The sound is almost dreamy. Tracks that stand out for me are ' my secret garden', 'sun and the rainfall', 'shouldnt of done that', and the underated single,'leave in silence'. Awesome!!! You must realize how before its time this album was, but would of failed at any other time, which to me gives it its class.
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on 23 August 2006
Even in a back catalogue like Depeche Mode's (a band who have always gone out of their way not to repeat themselves) this album sticks out as markedly different. Having lost their former main songwriter, Vince Clarke, "A Broken Frame" was recorded as a trio, so Martin L. Gore had to prove he had enough good songs to fill an album. From their third album onwards, DeMo would flirt (and, indeed go to bed) with Industrial influences and be always on the lookout for interesting sounds to sample. Here, we find the band relying on the analogue synth sounds available to young bands. Nothing thus to distinguish them from their contemporaries? Actually, there was plenty to make this a standout album, and it all lies in Gore's songwriting and in the band's tender approach to their material.

Opener "Leave In Silence" is a lovely, sad song, so unexpected after the blue-eyed synth pop of their first album. The dreamy "My Secret Garden" treads softly, too, and "Monument"'s quirky little sounds and funny words confuse at first, then you've just got to love it.

Now, with track 4, the album seems to "get going": there's a faster, danceable tune coming up. Great chord changes, fantastic synth hook line - but no vocals! Personally, I rather dislike instrumentals, but "Noting To Fear" is just great. (I've been wondering now and then what it could have been like with Dave Gahan singing over it, but I presume the band found it good enough the way it is - and it is.)

"See You", the most successful single off the album, has lovely vocal harmonies, and is, again, so tenderly produced. "Satellite" is slow and moody again, followed by two bouncy synth pop songs. Even the rather superficial "A Photograph Of You" is a cut above most Vince Clarke compositions for DeMo.

"Shouldn't ..." is the only "experimental" song here (great harmony vocals again), and the album finishes on a rather melancholic note again with "The Sun And The Rainfall", a song both dreamy and straightforward that really should have been a single so more people would know it.

"The Broken Frame" is a fantastic album, and the cover is probably their best ever.
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on 29 April 2010
I must be backwards as far as DM fans go. Where many fans and critics think this is the band's weakest album, while they praise Violator as their best, I'm the complete opposite. Having been a fan since 1985, I think Violator is one of their weakest albums, (though I don't own either of the three albums that came after it), while I think A Broken Frame is one of their best.

OK, so I do admit there is some bad material here, yet one of the band's worst songs from this period, the sickly sweet 'See You', was a big hit for the band. Another along the same insufferable style is the embarrassing 'A Photograph of You'. And though 'The Meaning of Love' is pretty close, I still find that song a fun bit of nonsense. The super-bouncy songs previously mentioned could be very misleading to the fact that A Broken Frame has some of Depeche Mode's best early bits of minimalistic dark music. 'Leave in Silence' is a classic single in the style that fits one of the group's later nicknames, Depress Mode. Cold, minimalistic and very cool. Probably one of the most hauntingly stunning tracks from their entire catalog is the classic 'My Secret Garden'. This song was an instant classic for me, and all these years later is still one I play on a regular basis. Martin Gore's songwriting was still developing, but the results on this album were very experimental and sometimes very exciting. Speaking of experimental, the definition of that would be the bizarre 'Monument'. Like with 'My Secret Garden', a haunting element is added with the Martin Gore's diffused background vocals. And like most fans, I do agree another standout track is the beautifully melodic 'The Sun and the Rainfall'. I couldn't have asked for a better closer to this brilliant album. Aside from tracks like 'See You', (and the super embarrassing TV appearance of the song with the group in a barn setting holding chickens), Martin Gore should stop bashing this album and embrace it for the successful bits therein.

The remastering on the reissue series involved former band member, Alan Wilder. Alan did great at ensuring these remasters did not suffer being a victim of the "Loudness Wars", i.e, the volume is not blown so loud that most dynamics are squashed out in favor of LOUDNESS. All of the remasters that I have purchased sound amazing and retain their full dynamic range, (though the first note of 'Satellite' on the CD is lopped off). Most bands these days allow their work to be destroyed by overzealous mastering engineers who think having their name attached to a CD that's LOUD will draw them more clients. Unfortunately, it may actually work for them, but audiophile fans who don't listen to compressed MP3's through poor sounding "earbuds" are the ones who suffer. Thankfully, the DM catalog has proven to be a wholly satisfying listening experience. That being said, I agree that it stinks having all the extra tracks condemned to the DVD.

The DVD documentary with all of these reissues is a real bonus. The in depth detail of each album is very enlightening, and viewers are teased with lots of clips of rare music videos and TV appearances. At the very least, all of the original promo videos should have been included as well, regardless of their perceived artistic quality in retrospect. I actually enjoy the multi colored cornball video for Leave in Silence. Plus, the video for The Meaning of Love displays a rarely seen playful side.

Though I don't consider A Broken Frame to truly be a 5 star album, I'm giving it the full count for the quality of the good material, and for the remastering quality. Thank you.
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on 26 May 2010
This album marks the beginnig of Depeche Mode era. Without V. Clarke, Martin Gore had taken anything on his shoulders. There are some nice songs like "Leave in silence", "My secret garden" and "The sun and the rainfall", but the whole album is only an outline of what Depeche will be in 4 years.
It's very intersting because the members of the group proved they could go on to make albums also without the leader, and it meant they really loved to work togheter.
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on 13 February 2000
The songs from this album bring back memory's to me of the early 1980's like no other 80's CD. Each track has some very powerful lyrics along with clever bass lines and wonderful melody's, and although all 10 tracks are brilliant, the most outstanding tracks from this CD are tracks (2) My Secret Garden, (7) The Meaning Of Love, and (10) The Sun And The Rainfall. I bought this album back in 1982 on vinyl, and these three tracks alone were enough to warrant me buying this on CD now.
Truly outstanding
John Lewin
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on 6 January 2010
Depeche Mode's feet firmly on the pop ladder,
Vince Clarke gone and Martin Gore takes hold
of the lyric writing reins.
The album cover picture hints at which direction
they are planning to follow, (Full steam ahead
into their perfect storm).
Brooding masterpieces like 'Leave In Silence',
'My Secret Garden' & 'The Sun and The Rainfall'.
Politically motivated tunes like 'Monument' and
'Shouldn't Have Done That'.
Tracks like 'See You' and 'The Meaning of Love'
have a throw back to speak and spell as if the
group are pondering the moment when to cut the
ties that bind them.
If you ever wanted to witness the start of a
music group's metamorphosis from light fun pop
to something awesomely dark - Then I recommend
this gem - There's NOTHING TO FEAR (Promise!).
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on 14 March 2011
Interesting listen to see how they evolved from their bubbly happy debut with Vince Clark,

Most Mode enthusiasts tell you to start your collection from Black Celebration and beyond, but it's always interesting to see the genesis of a band. Some evolve others disintegrate, with the mode it's the former

Most people are down on this album including the band. I read an article where Martin Gore said they made this album to show they could do it. I suspect they weren't really ready after Vince Clarke's departure. So in many respects this is a debut album of the New Mode

Broken Frame has some appeal as background music, but I get the feeling that wasn't what Depeche Mode was going for with their second album. It's all nicely put together, there are some occasionally appealing synths and programmed drums, but melodically this is very weak. But hey who else was really doing this in 1982. They weren't new romantics and the weren't as robotic as Newman, Ultravox or the Leauge.

The best word to describe this album is 'transitional'. The fabled 'difficult second album' is not helped when your main songwriter quits to form Yazoo. and Eurasue and given that direction thank God the Mode stayed together and gave it a go.

There's some excellent songs on this album that stand the test of time. 'Leave In Silence' is one of the greater singles from the early years of Depeche Mode. 'See You' which was the first single written by Gore as principal songwriter is a good effort. The album contains some hidden gems like 'My Secret Garden' and 'Monument'. These songs provide evidence that Gore was up to the job of not only filling Clarke's shoes, but going beyond that and was an early indication of things to come. Think about it guys were on 20 years old. Gore once admitted that "See You" and "A Photograph of You" were written when he was just 16. And the lyrics do seem naive and a bit juvenile for some. Also, Dave's vocals are alright on these early records, but on the later records is where he truly sounds better.

To say a broken frame has no artistic growth is kind of unfair, As I have said. "Monument" in particular is kind of fascinating. Alan Wilder hadn't yet joined the band but I remember reading that he had wanted to perform that song at some of the later tours, although they've never since touched the stuff on here. You kind of can't blame them, either. Some of these songs are awful. But like an apprentice we al make mistakes

All in all it isn't earth-shattering but not all that bad in itself. An album that sees them "growing up", adopting a darker style, although not really abandoning the teenybopper pop of the debut either. Despite the departure of Vince Clarke, A Broken Frame doesn't actually sound that different from Depeche Mode's debut. It's a little bit darker, but A Broken Frame more or less follows the blueprint for bubbly synth-pop perfectly. You Cant Compare the latter mode with this stuff they are universes apart. It a bit like the Cure at their poppiest

All in al this was just a stepping stone until they could decided which way to go
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