Saturday 22 July 2023



When I last ran a tour review thing, Katia Gigliotti was kind enough to review a couple of concerts. Happily, when I announced this one, Katia was keen to help out again so here is her excellent review of the Bologna gig. The return of But Not Tonight makes me very jealous of everyone who was at this concert. Thanks for this great Katia. All photographs are Katia's so do not steal them.

Bologna was the last of the three Memento Mori Italian dates, after Rome and Milan. It was hot hot hot - not only because of the amazing sensuality Dave brings on stage each and every time, but because Cerberus -a hot airwave, taking the name from the mythological Hell's guardian- has come to Bologna, with temperatures up to 38°C.

It was harder than ever to queue in the sun without any shade but love leads us to do extreme things, even if I am approaching an age where I should see concerts from the seats. That time has not come yet however, not for Depeche Mode concerts at least. If I wasn't standing, I would lose something: Martin's nail varnish, Dave's looks and gestures, even Christian's rebellious hair. I would certainly miss the expressions of Peter Gordeno, who, like me, you might have noticed is slowly turning into a new Robert Smith.

I was in Milan two days before, so I knew exactly what to expect, nevertheless, I was even more eager to see another DM concert.  Following a smooth, ethereal performance from Haelos, the concert started with My Cosmos is Mine. It's my favourite one: it is more an introductory atmospheric song, that brings the proper dark mood. The energy of the new album is brought out by Wagging Tongue, which, together with My Favourite Stranger and the first single Ghosts Again are the only tracks played tonight from Memento Mori, despite the tour supporting the album.

I will not complain however We all know this tour is not a simple promotional tour: it is a celebration of life and death, a non-religious funeral, and a party, because I think Fletch would have loved us to wave our hands up and dance in his memory.

I will not go into the setlist details, which includes some of the most obvious and expected songs (everybody's favourites), as well as non conventional songs that found their way into the setlist like Sister Of Night, the first lighter-song of the night, and John The Revelator.

Even when you think you are listening to the same songs for the millionth time, there is always some detail that surprises and inevitably touches those heartstrings that made me fall in love with this music when I was a little girl. Such details make me sing In Your Room at the top of my lungs, as if I were still in my bedroom and in my adolescence.

As the concert progresses, there is no time to breathe because Everything Counts demands our best dancing efforts and our attention for the eye-catching visuals. I must say that I did not understand the meaning of the visuals immediately, but they still made me proud of the band I love.

Dave's voice is so intense and his energy, despite the temperature, sets Dall'Ara on fire. Dave covers the stage, dominating the crowd, sometimes making strange gorilla-like moves and in others, slow and gentle movements of his hands. He sends kisses while Martin smiles, seeming almost surprised by the magic Dave is able to generate. 

And then Martin's moment arrives: the usual intense Home, with Martin's usual delicate singing, and then, beautifully unpredictable (not at all almost predictable!) But Not Tonight, played live for the first time since 2017. This mid-80s B-side is a gem that highly influenced my musical taste.

Martin stands aside and it is time for King Dave to return to lead the stage. After a superb A Pain That I'm  (the Jacques Lu Cont Remix version) , it's time to dedicate World In My Eyes to Andy: this is his tour, even if he is not physically on stage, but it is thanks to him that Depeche Mode still give us magic. I cannot yet believe he is not on stage behind his keyboards.

Wrong follows, so incredibly dark and powerful live, moreso than ever before and, after Enjoy The Silence, and the love it brings, it is time for the encore.

Christian surprisingly joins Peter on keyboards, whilst Dave and Martin walk till the end of the catwalk, in the middle of the stadium. And then something magical happens:Waiting For The Night.  The music seems to bring everyone into a galaxy of lights, a cloud of calm and silence. For few minutes, time stops and it is like being suspended in the void, in the light and in the deep atmosphere that only Dave Gahan's voice, perfectly harmonized with Martin's one, is able to create. 

I return back to Earth to dance to Just Can't Get Enough a song that, despite its fame, did not find a place in the setlist in many for many years. The concerts finishes, after 2 hours and 15 minutes of tears and smiles, sadness, happiness and infinite joy, with two classics: Never Let Me Down Again  and Personal Jesus.

This concert was phisically tiring, due to extreme weather conditions, and emotionally hard, but old and new friends, sharing the same emotions, turned it into something to treasure, feeding my Depeche Mode addiction.

I return home happy,  and despite experiencing that after gig melancholy, I am counting the days till next concert.

Will I always be here? Yes!

Setlist 16.07.23

Speak to Me (Outro)
1. My Cosmos Is Mine
2. Wagging Tongue
3. Walking in My Shoes
4. It's No Good
5. Sister of Night
6. In Your Room (Zephyr Mix)
7. Everything Counts
8. Precious
9. My Favourite Stranger
10. Home
11. But Not Tonight (First time since 2017)
12. Ghosts Again
13. I Feel You
14. A Pain That I'm Used To (Jacques Lu Cont Remix)
15. World in My Eyes (Dedicated to Andrew Fletcher)
16. Wrong
17. Stripped
18. John the Revelator
19. Enjoy the Silence

20. Waiting for the Night
21. Just Can't Get Enough
22. Never Let Me Down Again
23. Personal Jesus


Thanks Katia!

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