• Record Label: Columbia
  • Release Date: Mar 24, 2023

Universal acclaim - based on 19 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 19
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 19
  3. Negative: 0 out of 19
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  1. Mar 24, 2023
    Memento Mori is an absolute triumph. It’s almost the real songs of faith and devotion that they’d spoke of thirty years ago. Universal themes of mortality, love, anxiety; a handful of pop gems and what feels like an economical stripping back of the stadium-ness of previous works, making it their best long player this side of the century.
  2. Mar 24, 2023
    They have conjured a collection of really strong songs about big subjects, delivered with sensitivity and conviction. Memento Mori stands with the best of their career.
  3. Mar 31, 2023
    While much of Memento Mori is thoughtful, and some of it visits the dark side, there is a great deal of positivity underpinning Depeche Mode’s work as a duo.
  4. Mar 24, 2023
    Gore and Gahan transform tragedy into something profound and universally relatable. Though not their most immediate offering, Memento Mori is their most heartfelt, thoughtful, and moving statement in decades.
  5. 90
    Depeche Mode are still at the top of their game and ready to explore their vulnerabilities in new and intense ways. Memento Mori is not a one-listen album; take a few rounds to wrap your head around all the little details and let your favourite song change with every listen.
  6. Mar 28, 2023
    It is Depeche Mode’s most self-aware album in a long time – and their most memorable. At 50 minutes and 12 songs, the album is lean and humble, paying respect to the band’s past while also returning to the tension that made their best material so enjoyable.
  7. Mar 27, 2023
    On Memento Mori, Depeche Mode turn this philosophical reminder into a beautiful, raw, and passionate rebirth.
  8. Mar 23, 2023
    Fans of Depeche Mode can be happy to receive the band’s best offering of this century (though don’t get it twisted, ‘Playing The Angel’ is still a great record) but it’s unlikely they’ll change the minds of non-listeners, as foolish as such people are. The same ground is tread here, just in new shoes.
  9. Mar 23, 2023
    Not everything works. The aforementioned Always You leaves little impression and the clunky Caroline’s Monkey, which shoehorns in every hackneyed junkie reference you can think of (“holes in her skin”, “ice in her veins”, monkeys on backs, etc, etc), is just about rescued from oblivion thanks, again, to its auditory nod to Kraftwerk’s locomotive-fixated sixth studio album. But otherwise, Memento Mori is brimming and sometimes soaring with immediate pop songs.
  10. 80
    ‘Memento Mori’ is comfortably their best album this side of the millennium, and, most importantly, a testament to creativity and friendship. The music world is richer for it.
  11. 80
    By avoiding clutter, both in lyrics and in instrumentation, each song feels like inhaling a gulp of cold, crisp air.
  12. Mojo
    Mar 22, 2023
    These songs have an impressive vehemency, whether showcasing uncanny AI balladry on Soul With Me, industrial wall-of-sound on Speak To Me and People Are Good, electro-pop dissociation on My Favourite Stranger, or hydraulically pumped Brel-drama on Don't Say You Love Me. [May 2023, p.85]
  13. Mar 21, 2023
    Acknowledging mortality defines much of Memento Mori, but it never feels heavy handed or even all that sullen. Some of the tracks even sound upbeat. ... As always with Depeche Mode, everything counts in large amounts, and on Memonto Mori, the stakes feel bigger than ever.
  14. Mar 20, 2023
    Their most powerful work this century. It's the sound of a band entering a final act with a renewed sense of purpose, and sharp, sober new focus. [May 2023, p.26]
  15. Mar 20, 2023
    There’s warmth in the album’s fusion of industrial grind with delicate melody, and producer James Ford sparks a revivifying weirdness in songs such as My Cosmos Is Mine. For a record preoccupied by death, its big heart bursts with life.
  16. Mar 24, 2023
    Memento Mori’s biggest flaw is the middle section, as the respective songs don’t really stand out. Of course, they remain decent at the very least, “Before We Drown” being perhaps the one to return to most. Other than that, this is another solid Depeche Mode album with a handful of highlights that fans should definitely add to their playlists.
  17. Mar 23, 2023
    Memento Mori is not the hooded masterpiece of Music for the Masses or the hits cache of Violator. But it does signal that there are new ways yet for Gahan and Gore to at least approach their old magic.
  18. Mar 30, 2023
    Like the Seventh Seal, Memento Mori raises questions but never brings resolution. ... I It is a testament to their continued relevance and the unexpected wonder in remembering our shared condition.
  19. 70
    Lavish production disguises thin songwriting on a few tracks, but overall this voluptuous sonic feast feels like a fitting epitaph to departed friends. [Jun 2023, p.72]
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 85 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 71 out of 85
  2. Negative: 8 out of 85
  1. Mar 25, 2023
    Very powerfull peace of music! Gahan in good vocal shape, very fresh composition of sounds
  2. Mar 24, 2023
    Ahhh, that's more like it.

    After at least 3 albums in a row that felt laden with drudgery and distortion, Depeche Mode have seemingly
    Ahhh, that's more like it.

    After at least 3 albums in a row that felt laden with drudgery and distortion, Depeche Mode have seemingly cleaned out the attic, and reminded us of why we fell in love with them in the first place. Lead single Ghosts Again is beautifully compelling, with pristine arpeggios over lines that remind us, as the album title reminds us, that we're all going to die someday. The juxtaposition of pristine electronics over dark lyrics is a key part of Depeche Mode's longstanding DNA, and this album shows they still have that lifeblood coursing through their veins, even in their fifth decade of making music.

    While no song here necessarily has the immediacy of Strangelove, Never Let Me Down Again, or Shake the Disease, the album remains tonally consistent and of extremely high quality, and further listens reveals the subtle beauty on display here. It feels well thought out and motivated by genuine emotion, and as mentioned, all wrapped in production so polished you can see your reflection in it.

    Odd that an album about death can be infused with so much life, but that's Depeche Mode, isn't it?
    Full Review »
  3. Mar 24, 2023
    Having been there since the Vince Clarke fuelled Speak and Spell and everything since, I wasn't too sure what to expect after the fairly tepidHaving been there since the Vince Clarke fuelled Speak and Spell and everything since, I wasn't too sure what to expect after the fairly tepid Spirit album of 2017.

    Mode seemed to be a group calling time on their tenure as pathfinders in various genres of music. With Fletch's unexpected death I was surprised Gore and Gahen colluded on a new album, but I'm ecstatic they did. Gahan's mellifluous voice juxtaposed with Gore's obvious expertise leaves them with a fantastic album that Fletch would've been proud of. "Ghosts again" is their best single for years and the ethereal "My cosmos is mine" set the tone for a journey into the macabre but there are elements of" Violator" and" Music for the Masses" in this album, yet Memento Mori still somehow maintains a singular identity. Gahan has co- written a few of the songs and seems be honing his skills in this art form. Memento Mori seems full of angst and pragmatic life lessons and within this lie gems such as "My favourite stranger", a song which harks back to the group's halcyon days. Gore's still seemingly youthful tones massage sentiment on "Soul with me" and "Caroline's Monkey" is unique and may be viewed as the weakest track on the album but gets better after a few listens. Every song invites you in, making this the best Depeche Mode album for a long while and well worth the wait. I only hope it isn't their swansong.
    Full Review »