KROQ Interview Transcript Feb. 18, 2001
Interview by Kevin and Bean
K & B: It´s the world famous KROQ, 106.7, K. R. O. Q. and the Kevin and Bean show at 8:44. Hmm... Well no wait... who... that sounded like Depeche Mode... but WAIT! We don´t have that... that doesn´t come out for like 2 mos. That would be a brand new song called “Dream On” from Exciter. It´s the Kevin and Bean show, it´s KROQ and its Dave Gahan. How ya doing Dave? Daaaaaaaaaave (claps) good morning!
D: “Good morning.”
K & B: Welcome, glad to have you here.
D: “Glad to be here.”
K & B: How´s it feel to play the new song already?
D: “Um, well you would be the first, sounded pretty good... yeah.”
K & B: Yeah! I guess that´s better than “oh my god that sucks, I hate that, I didn´t realize it was going to sound like that, we to go back to the studio!” Well now, it´s been... What has it been four years since Ultra, right?
D: “Yeah, let me just put these on... I can´t hear you Mr. Bean.”
K & B: Ok, if that´s what you need... headphones, headphones. There you go. There´s Dave.
D: “There we are.”
K & B: Four years since Ultra, give me a... uh... the short version of where four years goes in your life.
D: “Uhhh... let me see... what did we do... yeah, it seems like we...”
K & B: You slept for like a year after your last tour...
D: “Well not really, no... Actually, I felt very, you know, excited after the last tour to be honest and um to get back into doing work. It was great, it was really good being out there and uh... and it felt really different to me and... and... you know see all the fans and everything...”
K & B: That kind of just whetted your appetite to do a little bit more?
D: Yeah... I feel like that a lot now, you know. I´m enjoying making music, again, um... um... I´m trying to do much better work with my... with my voice, and stuff like that, stretching me self and... uh... just wanna keep working, you know?
K & B: How do you fill up four years though, doing stuff... what...uh...
D: “It doesn´t seem that long, to be honest, uhhhm, since I was here before, like last time. But, uh, I feel a lot different now, to what I did then, and I feel a lot more confident about who I am and what I wanna do... and what I wanna do with my life.”
K & B: Is making the music difficult? Is it hard to make the album? Cause some band it comes, they do it in 5-6 days and some bands it takes years.
D: “Well, it´s a bit of a process with us, yeah... But the actual recording time is not that long really. And um... we worked with producer Mark Bell this time, famous for stuff he´s done a lot with Björk. It was great, you know, and he was very, very instrumental and very, very hands on. You know a lot of the music with stuff that´s going on now is very Mark Bell.”
K & B: Does the producer of a project make that big a difference or... I mean some producers you don´t really notice, some producers make a big difference?
D: “Uh... I think it depends on the band and what you do. Yeah. When Alan left us, he was kind of our musical director he would help to take Martin´s songs and uh... develop them and push them to an another place. When he left, we kind of had a hole there, you know, we didn´t have anybody to do that. So we´ve had to... with the last album it as Tim Simenon and a crew of people working as well. And this one was just basically Mark Bell. And Martin seemed to be a lot more open to Mark, like, giving his influence, and um he was a lot more open with me, as well, like experimenting with my voice more. On this album I kind of like do some different things with my voice that you wouldn´t expect from me. And, you know, try to challenge myself a lot more, uh... with songs like “Goodnight Lovers” and another song called “When The Body Speaks”. It´s not typical of what I might sing on a Depeche Mode album. And then you also get Dave Gahan doing Dave Gahan in his gothicness (K and B laugh) on songs like “Dead Of Night” wich is you know I get to play out all my favourite sort of roles.”
K & B: I laugh, by the way, when I hear some of those gothic Depeche Mode songs when I pull them out from time to time or when I hear them on the radio. I always think, cause... cause... now having spent a little bit of time with you over the years, I picture you are the opposite of a gothic guy to me. I mean, you´re, the time that we´ve known you, you´re mostly been upbeat and happy and friendly and just delightful... you´re just like the last person I expect to be doing moppy rock.
D: “Well... I only do that... I only do that for you (KB laugh). Most of the time I´m back in my hotel room laying in my coffin...”
K & B: I understand, right. We talked to uh... Dave Grohl a moment ago and he said he met you one time and was surprised how happy you were and upbeat. I mean are... are you still surprised by that, that view of you?
D: (laughs) You know what, I think I have all those sides to me, like we all do, and um... you know, if I want to go to the darkness its very easy. It´s a lot easier to do that for me than just kinda be so optimistic about life in general, um... but these days, to be honest, I´m just like... damn grateful to be having the opportunity to do all this stuff. And... you know and I just came here this morning and there´s like, you know, 30 fans or something, down there in the parking lot, you know, 8 o´clock in the morning. You know that´s... I mean... come-on we´ve like around for 20 years and there still like, they´re for us?”
K & B: Yeah that´s pretty amazing... After 20 years 30 people like your band... I mean that´s pretty impressive!
D: “Yeah yeah, we´re doing well you know... we´re looking at some places on the Strip for the tour. They said they WILL be there...”
K & B: The last time we had you on our show, Dave, is when you called in for the Richard Blade Farewell show, which has been what? Its gotta been a year and a half ago or something like that. Am I remembering this correctly, at this time, had you just had a baby back then?
D: “Yes, I have a little baby daughter now called Stella Rose... she´s 18 months and she´s...”
K & B: Well that explains where a lot of your time has gone...
D: “She is like the apple in my... I mean, I am in love, big time. This little girl is like a gift, big time.”
K & B: Has it changed your life more than you ever expected it would?
D: “Uhmm... yeah... I think... yeah... I think I was just I´m more ready, I´m more ready to be dad and learn how to be a father and stuff like that, and you know, your kids teach you that, you don´t get any training before.”
K & B: No you don´t, and you don´t have any choice. You´re it or not!
D: “Yeah... (laughs) that´s it. And it´s a... it´s a joy... it really is.”
K & B: Now she´s gonna have to be something that you´ll have to think as you start planning how much you wanna do for the tour on the new record, too. I mean, is this the type of thing where you´ll take her with you, or what?
D: “Um... she´ll, they´ll come out and visit me. Uh, you know uh, my son, in England´s gonna come and visit as well, and spend some time... he´s 13 now... so... he´s gonna come over to... uh... the States and spend some time on the road. And um, my wife and my stepson, Jimmy and Stella Rose as well. They´ll come out a little bit, but you know, its hard to... like, to be honest, to travel like that all the time you know. And... its gonna be so bad, the whole tour will probably be over and done with in sort of like 7, 8 months, or something like that.”
K & B: Which for most bands is a big tour, but for you it´s pretty small, isn´t it?
D: “Yeah... yeah... it´s... you know... it´s... enough.”
K & B: It´s enough but not too much.
D: “Yeah you don´t want to over do it, you know.”
K & B: Dave Gahan is in the studio, we need to take a quit break. You gonna stick around?
K & B: Got the new Depeche Mode CD with a bunch of little snippets which I believe you can find at depechemode.com, is that correct?
D: “That´s right... www.depechemode.com”
K & B: You can get it there, or you can hear it here. We´re gonna talk more with Dave when we come back on KROQ.
K & B: It is uh, the Kevin and Bean Show, it´s 8:56 and Dave Gahan is in the studio from Depeche Mode. Speaking of, uh, Grammy week, you guys ever won a Grammy, Dave?
D: “No. We´ve never won anything.”
K & B: Really, you never won a Grammy? What do you mean you´ve never won ANYTHING?
D: “We... We came close... uh... we came close with um... stuff uh... I think on... during the Songs of Faith and Devotion period. There was a couple of like those award type things in... in Europe. Um, let´s see... we were nominated for I think a film of something, a Grammy once. I think. Maybe 101, actually? I´m not sure, one of those things.”
K & B: Right. We´ve got a bunch of losers in our studio today! Geez!
D: “Yeah... yeah.”
K & B: How can you be so successful and never have...
D: “David... David Groohl... he didn´t... he...”
K & B: He hasn´t won anything, either!
D: “He hasn´t won, either? Ahh... you know...”
K & B: The new CD is gonna be called Exciter it comes out on May 15, if I have my information here correct. What´s Exciter mean, Dave?
D: “Well, um... we wanted to, again, to get a title that was, um... we liked Ultra and Violator we like to kind of... like have so me kind of theme throughout the years of Depeche Mode. Um, Martin actually came up with the... with the title. And what we did is, we had a couple of other titles going on and we... we stuck them up on the wall in the studio and kind of lived with them during the recording. And uh... yeah, it just stuck.”
K & B: It´s a word that sounds good.
D: “Yeah, it sounds good and... you know, all the songs on the album basically all deal with... they´re all aspects of love. Whether... lust... and... and... and... all this stuff that goes on inside when you´re in love with someone, or not.”
K & B: Would you say that´s the theme to the album?
D: “Pain, you know, pain... what is it, what´s the other stuff. Let´s go thru all the negative things... come.on see if you can throw some in for me.”
K & B: A rash. (all laugh loudly) You get a rash sometimes, depending on who it is...
D: “Yeah! (laughing) there´s a song particularly about that!”
K & B: You have a rash song? Salve... is required, a visit to the doctor...
D: “Infectionnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnns. (Realise?)... Guilt! Shame!”
K & B: Do you like that people listen to your album as a whole, a theme, or do you mind if people pick out a song they like and listen to it over and over, again? Cause some people would prefer that you kinda take it as a whole.
D: “Yeah. Um... I, I think of it like that.”
K & B: You do?
D: “I do think of it like that. I mean we try to put the songs together on the album to... to sort of take you on a little journey, um and we´ve placed a song at the end... The last song on the album is called “Goodnight Lovers”, which is kind of like a... feels like a lullaby, feels like a sort of doo-wop lullaby. Um, and we´ve got all the Depeche Mode electronicness to it and stuff. There´s a lot of songs on here that got influences like bluesy, sort of doo-woopy, like 50´s sort of influences to them as well, um... um... but in a very Depeche Mode sort of way, um...”
K & B: You know were playing “Dream On”, we world premiered the new Depeche Mode song “Dream On” a couple of minutes a go here.
K & B: And you made reference to being out in the desert... working on the video?
K & B: What is your concept... what are you trying to do for the video of that song?
D: “Um, basically the... it´s uh... I´m going a lot of driving, driving around in the desert, but it´s actually driving around like, anywhere. And... I´m going somewhere and as I´m driving around I´m thinking about this thing that maybe happened to me, like a flashback that I keep getting. And... and, um, the director was Stephane Sednaoui, I think I said his name right, if didn´t I´m sorry Stephane.”
K & B: Gesundheit!
D: “He´s a crazy Frenchman. And... um, it was a lot of fun actually. I really enjoyed it. I mean, it was a big deal for us. We´ve... we... kind of went over the top with this one a bit, and um... I´m looking forward to seeing the results. But he kind of really got the song. It was... you know, the vocal is really close, as though I´m singing in your ear and um... um... a bit dark... umm... and uh... the melody, the melody and the rhythm guitar is quite... you feel like driving. I don´t know, I do anyway.”
K & B: When I was listening to it, it reminded me most of your songs... of Personal Jesus... it has that same kind of DURDURDURDURDURDUR!
D: “Right... right.”
K & B: I´m sorry, what does it have? DURDURDURDURDURDUR! Which is a great driving around song...
D: “You know, we´re looking for a drummer, actually.”
K & B: Haha! You can see that he´s got that... I do have the rhythm, that´s what I got! Alright, all I know, we got to take another break. Can you stick around for one more?
K & B: Talk some more with Dave Gahan. We got some clips from the new CD, give you a little taste of what its gonna be like when we come back on the world famous KROQ.