You’d be hard-pressed to find a band that isn’t from Germany as synonymous with Berlin than Depeche Mode is. The English synth masters and Germany’s capital have shared a love affair spanning decades. Their last release even, Live in Berlin, a concert film directed by Anton Corbijn, details the strong ties between the group members and city.
For those fans out there that can’t wait until the next album, have no fear. This weekend there will be plenty of all things Mode to get you through until the group, hopefully, returns to their beloved second home.
BLY spoke with Christian Haase, DM-Tour Event Organiser, about the upcoming Spring Gathering:
What will be taking place during the Depeche Mode Spring Gathering?
The first Depeche Mode Spring Gathering in Berlin will take place from the 13th to the 15th of May 2016. There will be loads of chances to meet other DM fans and in join with events in different locations around Berlin.
On Friday we’ll start with an amazing warm-up party at the Meistersaal/Hansa Studios with a surprise DM tribute band, some very special guests and a DJ combo called ‘Klangmonauten’ with the singers from De/Vision and Camouflage.
On Saturday afternoon there will be a cinema event, “From Fans to Fans”, with a specially-produced fan film and a video talk session with different DM guests. Afterwards we’ll all walk to the close-by youth club boat “Remili” where we’ll ring in the evening with a barbecue buffet.
We then welcome Deb Danahay Mann, the early love of Vince Clarke and founder of “Depeche Mode Information Service” (the first Depeche Mode Fan Club in the world). Deb organises the legendary “DM in the beginning” Basildon tour. This is the opportunity to get lots of information you always wanted to know about the band and their beginnings – prepare yourself with any questions you may have about the young Depeche Mode.
Next there’s music from DM tribute band Remode, who we named “The Best Depeche Mode Tribute Band in Europe” in 2007 by the music magazine “Subway”. Spoil yourselves with the friendly live band from Bielefeld who celebrate their 10th anniversary and will play a special set. Please note: after the gigs, if you dare, you are welcome to get on stage and sing a DM song accompanied by the band.
The next highlight (and the last part of the evening on the boat) will be a dance event with the international DJ N:Mode. Besides the big hits from Depeche Mode, N:Mode, who has already shared a stage with Andy Fletcher, has prepared for us highlights from the electro and synth pop scene. Let’s dance!
Late Sunday morning there will be a fan project where we’ll all unite together as a “DM block” and go off and do something together. You can choose what we do: perhaps reenact the first Depeche Mode demonstration, or take a group picture, or do a sporting activity, or a human chain around the Strausberger Platz. For this, we’ll meet up at 11:30 a.m. at the famous Worldtime Clock at Alexanderplatz.
After brunch we proudly present a very special guest from the world of Depeche Mode: Gareth Jones. Amongst other things, the producer of the Berlin DM albums will speak about his work on “Black Celebration” in the Hansa Studios. Furthermore Gareth will answer your questions on the daily routine of DM in Berlin. Certainly with a following autograph session – so don’t forget your autograph books!
In connection with the DM Q&A session we are pleased to welcome the Depeche Mode Revival band from Ústí nad Labem in the Czech Republic. We cannot wait to see what the boys are up to.
Twice a year there is also a sight-seeing bus tour here in Berlin. What’s that all about?
The DM tour is an exciting Berlin tour that traces the life and history of Depeche Mode. In the ’80s, Martin, Dave & co. found their creative place here in Berlin, in the west part of the city. Even later on there were still connections between the musicians and the city. The tour teaches you everything you need to know.
The Depeche Mode city tour is a project from fans for fans – and offers the possibility to get to know each other or get in the mood for the upcoming concert experiences of the year. During this tour you will get a view from the everyday life of Depeche Mode behind the scenes, with various memories, stories and insider info around the “band of the universe”, as well as entertainment, music and drinks.
Depeche Mode and Berlin have such a unique relationship. Why do you think it has remained so strong over all these years?
Between 1983 and 1986 the band produced their albums with single hits like ‘People are People’, ‘Master & Servant’, ‘Shake the Disease’ and ‘Stripped” behind the “Iron Curtain” in West Berlin – at the Hansa studios at Potsdamer Platz. Furthermore Martin L. Gore had a private relationship with the city through his former German girlfriend Christina. Even after leaving the divided city, the band kept a close relationship with the region and its fans. So in 1988 they came back for an unforgettable concert in East Berlin. And after the wall came down, Depeche Mode celebrated with many fantastic gigs in different Berlin venues – right up to the Olympic Stadium. The latest highlight of this wonderful connection between DM and the German capital is newly-released DVD “Live in Berlin” with performances from the ‘Delta Machine’ tour. And the story goes on…
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