Depeche Mode have moved swiftly to denounce the so-called alt-right movement after its self-proclaimed leader Richard Spencer praised the band.
When asked by New York Magazine’s Olivia Nuzzi if he liked rock music, Spencer answered: “Depeche Mode is the official band of the alt-right.”
He later moved to clarify his comment, telling Rolling Stone: “My tongue was firmly in cheek. They aren’t a typical rock band, in terms of lyrics and much else. Depeche Mode is a band of existential angst, pain, sadism, horror, darkness and much more.
“It’s not bubblegum pop, with frontmen who sing about love and sugarplum fairies. There was a certain Communist aesthetic to an early album like 1982’s A Broken Frame as well as titles like Music For The Masses but then there’s a bit of a fascist element, too.
“It’s obviously ambiguous, and as with all art, everything is multi-layer, contradictory and ambivalent.”
And when asked for a comment by the website, a rep from the left-leaning band responded: “Depeche Mode has no ties to Richard Spencer or the alt-right and does not support the alt-right movement.”
Last year, Gahan compared US President Donald Trump to Hitler. He said: “The things that he’s saying sound very similar to what someone was saying in 1935 – and that didn’t work out very well. The things that he’s saying are just cruel, heartless and promoting fear.”
Depeche Mode will release their 14th studio album Spirit on March 17, with Gahan previously revealing the record wasn’t political but was “definitely about humanity and our place in that.”
He continued: “We called the album Spirit, because it’s like, ‘Where’s the spirit gone?’ or ‘Where’s the spirit in humanity?’ We considered calling it Maelstrom – that was a bit too heavy metal.”
Depeche Mode will head out on tour from next month in support of Spirit, which is now available for pre-order (opens in new tab).
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Depeche Mode Spirit tracklist
- Going Backwards
- Where’s The Revolution
- The Worst Crime
- You Move
- Cover Me
- Poison heart
- So Much Love
- No More (This Is The Last Time)