The release of the Live In Berlin film a few weeks back inevitably reignited the “shame there’s no World Violation Tour film” discussions amongst Depeche Mode fans.
It is perhaps because there was no official film from the tour (apart from the footage used to create the video for the World In My Eyes single) that it has, inevitably, gained almost a mythical status over the years.
“Yeah, you should’ve seen them in 1990 – they were AMAZING!”
You get the idea.
Apart from a monumental gig at the Paris Bercy in 1993 during the Devotional Tour, the shows I saw Depeche play in December 1990 remain personal favourites.
Inevitably, over the years various bits of footage and recordings have emerged and made their way to YouTube or places such as the Depeche Mode Live Wiki page.
In 2002, Depeche “webmaster” Daniel Barrasi found some clips which were apparently recorded by the crew from the huge Dodger Stadium gig.
There is also a grainy, 1 hour and 47 minute-clip from Frankfurt, but it’s a crowd-shot effort from quite some distance back and would test the patience of even the most devoted fan.
The quality of the remaining clips range from terrible to gives-you-a-decent-idea-of-what-the-fuss-is-about.
Still, there are some nuggets out there on the web and this footage of Personal Jesus from Philadelphia stands out mostly because the sound quality is decent enough and it’s shot from right in front of the stage.
It’s not perfect by any means, but the last 60 seconds illustrates just how powerful the song had become when performed live.