The Dallas review comes courtesy of Tara Salt who many of you will know as something of a Depeche superfan. Tara has been to almost as many gigs on this tour as the band have, usually with fellow reviewer Amanda Chaffee. Tara's Dallas review is a great read and, like her, I can't believe people are sitting down during a Depeche Mode gig. That's madness. Thanks to Tara for the write up and for the superb pictures too.
I have been watching Depeche Mode play live in Texas since the Exciter tour. I made a lot of DM friends that tour and I’ve always had a great time going back to see and party with them whenever the band hits town. Earlier this year when tickets went on sale, I had to make the decision to drop Texas from the list of shows I planned to see because the VIP Front Row package ended up being over twice the cost of the last tour. So why am I writing this review of the recent Dallas show? Because Irma got in the way you see..
In the second week of September, I sat at my desk in my office carefully monitoring the hurricane situation in Florida. Things got worse and eventually, the Tampa DM show was cancelled. I spent two hours on the phone cancelling the Florida hotels, concert tickets and flights and rerouting all of our plans to Texas. I felt an odd mix of upset and excitement but I was just relieved to have our new plans in place. Through Ticketmaster, we were still able to buy front and third row so this pleased me a lot. I do like to see the band up close. I’m a self admitted front-row-aholic, just because it’s such a drastically different way of experiencing the show. David makes it hard to be further back because he’s really awesome about playing around with and giving attention to fans he recognizes throughout the show.
Prior to attending the Dallas concert, we set off to a pre-show dinner that was set up for all of the Texas fans at a Mexican restaurant. It was wonderful to walk in and see the Texas DM crew all in one spot. We got to hug, talk, and catch up with each other. We then headed off to the venue. A good friend of mine, Erik, dropped us off as he went to find parking. Amanda, Joanna and I set off across the beautifully lit up parking lot towards the venue entrance. The sun was setting, painting a brilliant pink sky. The Ferris wheel in the background just made it all look so peaceful.
The Dallas crowd took a while to warm up. They seemed to open up and really enjoy the show by Cover Me. Amanda and I were third row on Martin’s side and were horrified to see a large swathe of people sitting down in the first two rows. Some even left mid way through the show and never came back! On the bright side, this just made it easier for David to see us and so the singalongs commenced. The best was during Poison Heart where David held out the microphone to us and we sang mightily together for a verse. I have really enjoyed these moments throughout the tour. I have to mention that the heat that night was pretty intense so that might have explained the less ardent crowd. I was happy to see the enthusiasm really step up for the last half of the show. In North America, the singalongs after Home haven’t worked well. Only Toronto, Montreal and the second night of New York managed to get it done right. Having said that, the North American crowds seem to particularly adore and respond to Everything Counts. The Dallas crowd responded very well to the song that night and sang for a long time after the band had finished. It’s by far one of my favourite song versions on this tour and it was great to have such enthusiasm about it from the crowd that night.
It is important to note that on the day of the Dallas show, Depeche Mode released their own version of "Heroes" as a Highline video session to commemorate its 40th anniversary. Bowie, having given the band so much inspiration over the years, is celebrated with a gorgeous rendition of the song included on their setlist every night. It’s been a joy to watch David sing this as he is right in his element and pretty much smiles throughout the entire song. David usually interacts with the crowd during "Heroes" but in Dallas he kept largely to himself, perhaps because of the momentous day. It made this performance of the song more personal, intimate and moving. Peter also comes down from his keyboards and joins Martin on guitar so it’s a fantastic emotional song to watch live with everyone so involved and up front. The band seemed in good spirits that night and gave it their all and the crowd responded in kind. I was happy to have made it to one of my “hometown” shows since the Texas fans are always a fun crowd to be a part of. It made my tenth concert of the tour definitely memorable.
See you next time Dallas!
Thank you Tara