Tuesday 7 November 2017


Stephanie Crone returns to reviewing duties for this show, following on from her superb Denver review away back on August 25 (http://almostpredictablealmost1.blogspot.co.uk/2017/08/live-review-depeche-mode-pepsi-centre.html) This equally splendid piece sees Stephanie not only enjoy another top notch Mode outing on her last gig of the tour, but also sees her meet up with the band and Stephanie shares that amazing VIP experience with us here. By this point in time I think I'm the only person that's not met them - very jealous Stephanie. Thanks very much to Stephanie for this great blog and, the last pic aside which is Stephanie's, thanks again to Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group.

Pictures courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group

On a rare sunny late October afternoon in northern Oregon we found ourselves making the trek towards Portland, much like we’d done two days prior on our adventure to Seattle for the Depeche Mode show there. However, this day was to be very different than any of the four prior Depeche Mode shows we’d been lucky to attend thus far during the Global Spirit tour. It was a day we’d anticipated and shared our fair amounts of anxiety and excitement for six months. It was our turn to meet the band that had shaped our adolescence, young adulthood and full blown middle aged mom lives. Honestly, a day we never thought we would ever dream of seeing, but here we were. Sometimes being crazy pays off.

We checked into our hotel and nervously readied ourselves to meet the boys. Luckily our hotel was a short ten minute walk to the Moda Center, and the Portland weather was cooperating. We found the will call area where we were advised to wait for a Live Nation rep to take us backstage. There we were joined by about 12 other fans who were also going backstage. You could definitely feel the excitement and anticipation in the air amongst our group as we had our tickets scanned and followed the rep to a large elevator in the side door of the Moda Center. 

Pictures courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group
We rode the elevator down to a large meeting area type room. At the end of the room we see the DM logo backdrop set up for taking photos with the band. There we were told that we were going to be split into three groups – the Strobe fans (this was us, and included four other fans), the radio contest group (this group had 8 fans) and a charity winner group (2 fans). We were the group that was going first. We were told to stand along the backdrop and the guys would be entering and walking down the line to shake each of our hands, then take a photo. While we waited Kessler, the band manager, came and chatted us up a bit. We told him about the four other shows we had been to in the last 2 months and talked about how awesome Hollywood was. He asked us where our seats were (row 18).

Then, it was time. My friend excitedly whispered “omigod, they’re here!” as she heard a door click, and around the corner comes Fletch, with a huge smile and hug, followed by none other than Mr. Martin L. Gore who smiled broadly and shook my hand as I told him I loved him. It all went very quickly. I assume Dave made his way down the line but I was consumed with getting a hug from Martin during our brief encounter. I was successful! And then we were told to stand for the picture. I made sure to plant myself right next to Martin. I didn’t realize they would be taking more than one photo, but they snapped a few. And that was it. We were told “ok, that’s it guys, next group!” As we made our way I made sure to stop Dave and shake his hand. 

Pictures courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group
After this Kessler tells us to wait because he was going to get us some better seats! Um, okay! I told him that we were with two other people (my awesome cousin and his rad wife), and he said okay we will give you four! Ummmm, OKAY! So they sent us on our way with four tickets for sixth row! After this we were all extremely giddy. We rode the elevator back up with the other fans and we were all laughing and saying how awesome that was. It was euphoric. We went and found my cousin (who is seriously hilarious and dressed in a silver sequin suit coat a la Dave in “It’s No Good”) and found our new seats, smack next to the catwalk.

We jammed out once more to Warpaint’s set, who are now on my permanent playlist. They are amazingly talented and now bring back the best memories of an epic DM adventure. While waiting for DM to start my cousin’s wife had the best idea - let’s go find someone who has seats way at the top and give them our 18th row floor seats! We found the most awesome ladies as they were about to take the stairs to the 3rd level, who were so grateful for the better seats! It was pretty dang cool.

Pictures courtesy of Depeche Mode Classic Photos & Videos Facebook Group
Now, for the actual show. We were seated directly to the left of the catwalk, so to the very right of the stage. Not as good a view as in the center, but absolutely no complaints. As Dave strutted the catwalk during Cover Me and Mart jumped like a champion as he finished off Home, we were within reaching distance. But it almost didn’t matter, because we had just met and shook their hands (this still makes me all giggly)! Martin threw his guitar pick at some kids attending with their parents, aww. 

The set list was engraved in our memory at this point, and I could almost even predict the moves Dave would make. We had taken a liking to counting down to when the bulk of the crowd would notice that a “popular” song was starting, then deciding to get out of their seats. We stood and sang along to every single word of each song, as always. Dave somehow manages to pack each song full of passion and energy, show after show after show. 

We had a post meet and greet glow going for the rest of the night, literally a dream come true and the best early birthday present a devotee could ask for. It is bittersweet that our adventure is done for this tour, we had more fun than ever and can’t wait to start planning the next one!

Stephanie second from Fletch side


Thanks Stephanie!

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