Wednesday 19 July 2017


After a quick post festival break, Depeche Mode returned to live action at St Petersburg's SKK in front of a capacity sold out crowd of 25,000. Polina Lipezina was there and she wrote this great review for The Global Spirit Tour Project. Thanks very much to Polina for this and thanks as ever to Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group for letting me run riot with their hard work.

Courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos And Videos Facebook Group

It seems like there is more emotion than a detailed concert description down here! It’s a pretty strange contradiction: I don’t really like St Petersburg much, but the opposite is true when it comes to the concerts in this city. On the Delta Machine tour my favourite concert ended up right in this place. This Thursday, July 13th, it was really warm in St Petersburg and that was great news for all of us who came to the concert early in the morning. We were relaxing on the grass, talking about everything in the world, sometimes connecting things to what we all came for: Depeche Mode. Despite having early entrance tickets, we ended up really exhausted due to the slow and horrible delays getting into the venue. Eventually, we finally entered the concert hall, to be greeted by quite a surprise. Having entered an indoor area, no one would ever imagine that you might need an umbrella and raincoats… this time they were a must! The rain, that had started outside, had soaked through the roof into the concert hall 30 minutes after the crowd was let inside. The roof was leaking! It was embarrassing and it was scary because it could have caused the concert to be cancelled. I hope with their future tours Depeche Mode will never use this horrendous concert hall! I doubt there will be any repairs or changes done to it anyway. But let us return to the main part happening inside this piece of Soviet architecture…

Courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group

After a wait of approximately 1 and a half hours after the crowd was let in, Maya Jane Coles walked onto the stage, playing on this tour for the first time. During the concert in this venue on the Delta Machine tour, the crowd kept shouting out “Depeche Mode!” during the warm-up, which was pretty disrespectful towards the warm-up band. This evening, they were better behaved. Maya was radiating with light and love towards everything she does. Whatever she did made you close your eyes and dissolve in sounds. In some moments, I caught myself thinking that I didn’t want it to end. On this tour I heard all the warm-up bands, except for Horrors, fell in love with Algiers, but Maya… I cannot state as a fact that Maya was better than Algiers, they are all different and cool, but on July the 13th she gave us 40 minutes of awesomeness.

Courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group
Despite that, later on we had a much bigger thing to come. I know that for some people the centre of attraction is Martin. They cannot take their eyes off him for two hours straight, following his guitar swapping and his keyboard playing for the whole show.  For me though,  the hero, this center of attraction, unsurprisingly, is Dave. But St Petersburg has changed everything this time. This is the first concert where I saw not only Dave on stage, and this is surprising. It’s surprising for myself. I was standing right across from Martin and he looked incredible. Everything he was doing was with great love (yes, that’s a revelation to me). David was amazing of course. He was obviously in high spirits, I’ve never seen him smile so much!. But I have to point out that there were less pole dances and other wigglings… There was a tape on Dave’s lower back… Please get well! 

Courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group
From the point where I was standing, I could also see Jez’s work, who diligently tuned guitars and additionally swapped them for Martin. At one point,  Kessler and then Jennifer showed up. Sometimes it’s really interesting to look inside the little corner of the band’s world, even though you’re just standing in a fan zone. The Setlist didn’t bring any surprises (could there be any on the final 6 tour concerts?), but is anyone upset by that? There were a couple of moments I’d like to point out. First was Dave’s catwalk scene during Everything Counts  where he was tapping with his foot to the rhythm of the drums, just like in Just Can't Get Enough on the previous tour. Has it happened even before this time? Sccondly,  in the fan zone there was a girl who that night came to Depeche Mode concert for the first time. She said, it was long awaited dream - during Going Backwards she was standing full of tears… Dreams do come true.


Thank you very much Polina. 

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