If 'Violator' had been drenched with the assurance and bravado of a band on top of the world and unphased by any internal differences, 'Songs Of Faith And Devotion' exuded an altogether more aggressive energy and potency that was not so jovial. This was evident from what appeared to be a greater sense of cynicism that preoccupied Martin's characteristically autobiographical songs ('Walking In My Shoes', 'Judas' and 'Condemnation' in particular) and aspects of Depeche Mode's pleasure-seeking existence that was reflected in tracks like 'Rush'.

Also significant was the shift in location and lifestyle for Dave who was now, both musically and chemically, feeding off the 'grungers' of LA and arrived at the first recording session with them very much in his mind. Coupled with Alan's desire to break free from the rigid confines of programmed music and embrace a more organic, groove-based style, 'SOFAD' was destined to reflect a new Depeche Mode agenda.

"With all DM albums, we tried to move forward from the previous one and after some discussion between myself, Flood and the others, we agreed that our approach should be more towards performance whilst trying to push ourselves into areas we hadn't explored. Some of the songs like 'I Feel You', 'In Your Room' and 'Rush' suggested a looser, more 'live' feel and it's probably fair to say that myself, Flood and Dave were the main instigators of this open and fluid sound."