Amongst a host of worthy attributes, 'Black Celebration' can also be significantly noted for its concluding role amongst Depeche Mode's 11 LPs, representing in many ways the end of a musical era and the conclusion of a tried and tested production liason.

In particular, it saw the consummation of an outwardly experimental and almost militant style, prompted some years before by a series of significant events - the departure of Vince Clarke, the adoption of songwriting duties by Martin Gore and the inauguration of classically-trained musician Alan Wilder into the band, and more importantly into the studio.

Since 1983s 'Construction Time Again', (DM's third album and the first with Wilder), Alan had been fairly obvious in his desire to steer the music away from its early 'teeny bopper' roots to embrace a darker more tenebrous world and, coupled with a voracious appetite for the possibilities offered by early sampling devices, the music had developed an element of the industrial, characterised by an ominous electro mood and the clanking of assorted metal.

'Black Celebration' was really the last Depeche LP to fully salute this 'sample anything and everything' approach and although the use of everyday objects as instruments would not be lost on future releases, it would be the last time the band were let loose in the studio kitchen.....