On The Global Spirit Tour Project, Tara Salt's reviews were always a highlight. It seemed that every time she went to a Depeche gig she would interact with or meet the band and, once again, that happened in Montreal. Read on to find out what happened and enjoy this great review. Thank you very much Tara - all photos are Tara's unless credited otherwise.
Montreal – my lucky city. It’s where I first met David back in 2001, and it’s also where I was able to help a few friends meet Martin for the first time in 2009. In 2017 I got a big hug from David when he was incredibly nice to spend time with our group after the show, talking about a variety of topics including David Bowie and his daughter Stella Rose, who had just been accepted to a premiere art program in California. Montreal is where the Depeche Mode crowd is always a loud, crazy one – and the gift is how the band responds to that love. I live in Toronto, but I’ve always had to admit that the Montreal crowds are superior. This night proved that Montreal was yet again, one of the best places to see DM in North America.
For the first North American leg of the Memento Mori tour, I managed to get front row tickets for Toronto, Quebec City and Montreal. I can clearly say that of the three, Montreal was the most energetic and intense show and we had a higher amount of butt wiggles and crotch grabs to show for it. (“You get a butt wiggle, and you get a crotch grab and you get a butt wiggle!”) I knew the band and crowd was on fire at a completely different level than Toronto and Quebec City when the crowd kept singing after Everything Counts. Martin and David enjoyed this since it had not occurred during previous shows, and you could tell by the big smiles the band had when looking out from the stage. In Toronto and Quebec City I had a good giggle at David’s Frankenstein like air-piano playing during Never Let Me Down Again. In Montreal we not only got that, but we also got some air guitar from David during Stripped. It’s always best when both crowd and band are lost in the intensity of the moment and there was a lot of that in Montreal.
On a personal note, Montreal was my 90th Depeche Mode concert. I’m looking forward to attending my 101st concert this tour which is ironic, given that many of us who go to multiple shows can directly trace that need back to the 101 video. It made seeing multiple shows look like so much fun and it spawned a lot of us spending fortunes following the band on tour over the last few decades. You won’t find any of us regretting any of those decisions though! One benefit of being in the front row a lot is that David recognises me and we often sing together during the shows. In Montreal those songs ended up being Walking In My Shoes and Stripped and I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I enjoyed every minute of it, while squealing on the inside.
In fact, at the beginning of the concert during Wagging Tongue, he pointed down at me and grinned as if to say, “There you are!” I know he’s mentioned in past interviews that he looks for familiar faces in the crowd. In Montreal he was sharing that recognition with my friends on Martin’s side of the catwalk since he recognized them as well. I’ll admit it makes the very pricey front rows hard to stay away from, and it’s a personal connection that I’ve always loved. It’s also amazing to see the interaction and smiles exchanged between band members and that’s something you miss when not close up. Mind you, I always joke that when the tour DVD’s are released, I finally get to see the light show. I never get to appreciate that aspect of the concert when up front. You win some, you lose some!
Having seen three shows, my ultimate highlights this tour include Martin singing Soul With Me and David singing Speak To Me. Martin sings Soul With Me with gusto and conviction and he pours a lot of emotion into the song. It’s intimate, and it shines. Each tour I see, I swear Martin gets better and more comfortable out there, commanding the stage on his own. David’s Speak to Me is similar in that it’s a showcase song for him and it feels very epic – very much like how Cover Me was during the Global Spirit tour. I could watch him gracefully float and twirl and command like a wizard all night. Speak To Me, this tour, is a song where you want to whip out your phone and record the last minute of the song on video. David’s movements on stage at that point is quite something to watch. It’s especially thrilling to hear the song build to a crescendo right to the very end. If you haven’t seen the show yet, pay particular attention to these two songs when you go.
I’d have to say the first half of the setlist is very intimate but then the pace picks up with A Pain That I’m Used To. While I do wish that the band would switch up the setlist more, I can’t say I am displeased that they kept the version of Everything Counts from the lasttour. I find it remains one of the BEST versions of an older song they have done live. I also adore Wrong and I was thrilled to see them keep it. I call it my “therapeutic” DM song to sing along to – the lyrics are so damn good. And while many of us long-time fans are very done with Just Can’t Get Enough, in Montreal I found myself jumping up and down to it and that’s a testament to the band always doing a great job of keeping us thrilled and involved.
I was lucky enough to go backstage and have a good chat with Martin. (PS – if he could, he would like to live forever!) He's so easy to talk with and he put up with some of our funny questions and stories and I was grateful to spend time with someone who has made millions of fans worldwide so happy. We left a bit past midnight and headed back to our hotel which was only a few blocks up the street from the venue. It was fun to hang out with my friends one last time in the lobby, chatting and catching up and reminiscing. Many of us will meet again in Europe once the first European leg of the tour opens and I’m very much looking forward to that.
Thanks very much Tara.
Great review and so nice to meet and sit/stand next to you for this amazing concertReplyDelete
It was such a great show! I shared this vibe with 3 friends of mine. One of them was the first time he assisted to a DM show! He was in shocked to feel this vibes from the band and crowd.ReplyDelete
I m agree with you, Tara. The crowd in Montreal is so amazing 🤩 I felt it again. Montreal was my first show in 1993 during the SOFAD tour. I was 22 at that time. Dave was and he is still a huge performer and as you said, it seems that Martin enjoys more and more his experience with the crowd.
In that tour, I met such great people that I chatted with during the pandemic. The Devotees community is special and helped me to pass through this difficult time (pandemic) and DM songs and lyrics are included. Michel, Ron, Kris, Nancy, Sophie, Alain, Isabelle, Stephanie, Mike, Michelle and the others I miss or haven’t met yet, thanks for sharing this special vibes with me.
Thank for sharing your experience, Tara. 90 shows with the boys club… you are a huge fan and we can read your «admiration ». Grateful Devotee, you are :)