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At first, the band performed at London’s nightclubs where artists managed to attract hundreds of fans. Their popularity brought the band a contract with Mute Records. In 1981, the group released the debut single, “Dreaming of Me”. Neither the first nor the second song became popular. However, the third single “Just Can’t Get Enough” reached the top-10 of the UK Singles Chart. The same year, the artists presented the debut LP, Speak and Spell, which earned immense popularity. After its release, many fans started trying to book Depeche Mode for private events.
The group was climbing to the peak of its popularity when Clark suddenly left the band. Together with Alison Moyet, he formed a group called Yazoo and pushed Depeche Mode to the brink of disbanding. However, the remaining artists didn’t give up. Martin Gore became the new leader. The artists invited Alan Wilder to take Clark’s place.
In 1982, the band released a new LP, A Broken Frame, which turned out just as successful as their previous work. The next album, Some Great Reward, which came out in 1984, was a commercial breakthrough. The single "People Are People" turned into an international hit. The album went platinum.
In 1986, Depeche Mode presented the next album, Black Celebration. It sold half a million copies in the USA and earned gold status. The LP climbed into charts all over the world. Next year, musicians released Music for the Masses, which featured three huge hits, "Strangelove," "Never Let Me Down Again," and "Behind the Wheel." Depeche Mode became mainstream. The album sold over three million copies. After its release, the band embarked on a promotional tour. The tickets to concerts sold out almost instantly.
At the beginning of the 1990s, alternative music was on the peak of its popularity. Depeche Mode turned into one of the most successful alternative bands. In 1990, the group presented Violator. It received three platinum certifications. The album featured such timeless hits as "Personal Jesus", "Enjoy the Silence," "Policy of Truth", and "World in My Eyes."
In 1993, the band presented a new LP, Songs of Faith and Devotion. In the album, the artists stopped putting an accent on electric guitars. The LP climbed to the top of the British chart anyway.
Even though the band was at the peak of its popularity, musicians started having personal problems. In 1995, Wilder left the group. Soon after that, Gahan tried to kill himself. The artist had to go through lengthy rehabilitation to fight his drug addiction.