Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Black Celebration (Dts) (Dig)
Genres: Dance & Electronic, Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
1984's BLACK CELEBRATION is an emotionally intense, anthemic masterpiece that introduced the classics "Stripped," "A Question Of Time," "Fly On The Windscreen," and the title track. DVD boasts three songs recorded "Live ... more »
1984's BLACK CELEBRATION is an emotionally intense, anthemic masterpiece that introduced the classics "Stripped," "A Question Of Time," "Fly On The Windscreen," and the title track. DVD boasts three songs recorded "Live In Birmingham 1986" plus eight more bonus tracks including alternate versions of "Shake The Disease," "Flexible," "Fly On The Windscreen," and "It's Called A Heart." Also includes the DVD film Depeche Mode 1986: The Songs Aren't Good Enough, There Aren't Any Singles And It'll Never Get Played On The Radio. DVD, Album in 5.1 & Hi-Res Stereo.
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Depeche Mode's 'Brief Period of Rejoicing...'
Roger Riddell | Lexington, KY. United States | 03/28/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The following review has been 21 years in coming as Depeche Mode's 1986 album and crowning achievement of their discography, 'Black Celebration', has steadfastly remained my most favorite and revered artist album of all time.
Following the moderate success of the highly innovative and experimental 'Construction Time Again' in 1983 and then a more resounding achievement, both in terms of the critical acclaim and subsequent tour which followed 1984's 'Some Great Reward', the time had come once again ("Get out the crane...") for the Basildon four to push the creative envelope further still and reach deeper yet, in efforts to broaden their burgeoning, worldwide fan base. In essence, it was time the world took notice of Depeche Mode and the band was ready ready to be taken seriously as a major and credible all electronic act. Who could have ever imagined an album which featured nothing in the vein of 'radio friendly' singles and lyrics which reflected on the darker nature of "The world we live and life in general", would aid in ascending the band to such stellar heights?
'Black Celebration', a dark, moody, sonic epitome of what the band was all about in terms of sound, word, voice and overall aesthetic, saw the creation of what I lovingly refer to as Depeche Mode's own personal, exclusively electronic sister to 'Dark Side of the Moon.' Indeed, the prodcution values and themes present on this 5th studio album were richer, more densely layered and contained combined elements which would demand the band be regarded as a musical force to be reckoned with by fans and critics alike and also as harbingers of a new era in electronic music.
From the moody, darkly atmospheric, sample laden opening of the albums title track, to the industrial yet plaintive longings of 'Stripped', 'Black Celebration' is a seductive soundscape drenched in reverb, angst and an oppressive, foreboding ambience which conjures heady, if not bleak imagery of life, love and lust. The inclusion of a slightly (final) remixed version of 'Fly on the Windscreen' (1985's 'It's Called a Heart' B-side) was an obvious and proper choice, given the fact the track seemed to lend itself perfectly to the overall vibe of 'doom and gloom' ever present throughout the album. Another slightly new and inventive production technique, previously employed on 'Construction Time Again' (though to a lesser extent) was the mixing and sequeing of tracks together without traditional pauses or breaks. This production value is most notably featured on the albums first three tracks, beginning with 'Black Celebration' and concluding with the heartbreaking yet gorgeous strains of 'A Question of Lust.' The mixing of the first three tracks as one extended album intro, remains to this day the most flawless album opening I've ever experienced and has yet to be duplicated. The albums ebb and flow, as well as its overall track arrangement and order, is nothing short of brilliant. Alan Wilder's meticulous attention to every detail is quite obvious in every sound, note and nuance.
Many of the production elements found on 'Black Celebration' bear a striking resemblance to the sounds Wilder would later experiment with on his Recoil project, while Martin Gore's profound, emotionally resonant lyrics are, I feel, some of the best of his career. 'Sometimes', 'Here is the House' and 'World Full of Nothing' are three of the most beautiful Depeche Mode tracks ever produced.
While I enjoy the track 'But Not Tonight' ('Stripped' B-side and included on the US album release), I do feel the decision to excise it from the re-master re-release was a fitting one as the track lends itself to a more 'pop' sensibility and somewhat diminishes the mood and atmosphere created by the albums preceding tracks. Some argue the song allows the album to conclude on a more positive, upbeat note. However, I feel the albums original (UK release) closing track, 'New Dress', achieves the same task but with more pronounced minor chords and haunting lyrics, while still maintaining an air of optimism against gritty realism - 'You may change the world..."
As for the DVD re-master, the sound is fresh, crisp and startlingly bold and the CD version is nearly as impressive. The albums packaging, replete with the embossed logos of the original LP sleeve and which features red tulips before a looming skyscraper draped in European military styled banners (the explanation of the album covers creation and design is especially interesting on the DVD documentary) is both stark, beautiful and visually appealing as ever. And while I regard Anton Corbijn as an accomplished photographer and graphic designer in his own right, I do feel the band's album and single artwork which followed 'Music for the Masses', suffered an artistic defeat of sorts after the band parted ways with photographer Brian Griffin ('A Broken Frame') and Towne and Country Planning.
After the release and critical success of 'Black Celebration', Depeche Mode continued (and continues) from strength to strength, purifying and always evolving their production prowess to the next level with each subsequent album that followed - a sign of true talent for any band wishing to succeed in the music industry. The sonic artwork crafted on this album has yet to be replicated and I doubt it ever will. 'Black Celebration' was the turning point for the band. It was a moment in time, a testament to 'life in the so-called space age' and an indicator that one of electronicas inimitable pioneers were about to take the world by storm. "I'll drink to that...""
Pretty decent remaster
Persona non grata | Sacramento, CA USA | 04/14/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Thank God that this CD wasn't another victim of the "loudness war" that has recently permeated the CD mastering industry. The dynamics are well preserved and there is very little clipping of the audio. Those who are afraid that this CD would sound like "Playing the Angel" or the two Singles compilation need not worry. The engineers showed restraint with this one.
In addition to the "careful" remaster, there's a nice HOUR LONG documentary included with this CD.
This one is definitely a very worthy purchase."
Great Album - without the great vibes in this remaster
verylastangel | 11/23/2007
(2 out of 5 stars)
"What an incredible album, recorded and mixed at the legendary Hansa Studios in Berlin, where Bowie's Heroes was recorded. Oh, wait. This version was mixed recently, using pro-tools, without the wonderful ambience of Hansa... without Gareth Jones and Alan Wilder at the helm.
Unfortunately, it shows.
However, the extras are worth getting, and I dare say it's worth buying just for an A/B comparison with the original issue just to show how real acoustics beat out convoluted (their word, not mine) reverb algorithms EVERY TIME.