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«Enjoy the Silence» is a song by the English electronic band Depeche Mode, taken from their seventh studio album, Violator (1990). The song was recorded in 1989 and released on 16 January 1990 as the album’s second single.

The single is Gold certificated in the US and Germany. The song won Best British Single at the 1991 BRIT Awards.

«Enjoy the Silence» was re-released as a single in 2004 for the Depeche Mode remix project Remixes 81–04, and was titled «Enjoy the Silence (Reinterpreted)» or, more simply, «Enjoy the Silence 04».

Songwriter Martin Gore created a ballad-like first version of the song, which the band took into the studio in 1990. At band member Alan Wilder’s insistence, the song was re-worked into the up-tempo version released on the album. The «Harmonium» mix, released on the 12″ single, is not the demo version, but rather a new version created to sound like the original demo.

There are two instrumental B-sides to «Enjoy the Silence». «Sibeling» (the 12″ B-side) is a soft piano-tune while «Memphisto» (the 7″ B-side) is a darker, eerier track. The title of «Sibeling» refers to Finnish classical composer Jean Sibelius. According to Martin Gore, «Memphisto is the name of an imaginary film about Elvis as a Devil, that I created in my mind», and is a portmanteau of «Memphis» (where Elvis lived at Graceland) and «Mephisto».

The Anton Corbijn-directed music video for «Enjoy the Silence» references the themes and storyline of the philosophical children’s book The Little Prince from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Footage of Dave Gahan dressed as a stereotypical king wandering the hillsides of the Scottish Highlands, the coast of Algarve in Portugal and finally the Swiss Alps with a deck chair is intercut with black-and-white footage of the band posing. Brief flashes of a single rose (which is also on the album cover of Violator) appear throughout the scenes.

When Corbijn presented the concept of the video to the band, which at the time was simply «Dave dressed up as a king, walking around with a deck chair», they initially rejected it. They changed their minds, when he explained that the idea was that the King (Dave) represented «a man with everything in the world, just looking for a quiet place to sit»; a king of no kingdom. Andy Fletcher jokes that he favoured the video because «[he] only had to do about an hour’s worth of work».

The video uses a slightly different mix of the album version of the song (the most notable difference being a new and extended introduction) that has not been released in any audio format. The final long shots of the king walking through the snow are not Gahan but rather the video’s producer, Richard Bell. Gahan had left the set, tired of the cold in Switzerland (recounted by Gahan in the intro to The Videos (86-98) and to the DVD of The Best of Depeche Mode Volume 1).

There are two edited versions of the Corbijn-directed video. One version begins with Andy Fletcher looking towards his right as the song begins. Shots of Dave Gahan dressed as a king singing directly to the camera are intercut with scenes of his walking through the Scottish Highlands, the coast of Portugal and the Swiss Alps. The video ends with Gahan singing the last line, «Enjoy the silence.», then putting his finger in front of his lips as if to quiet the viewer. This video is blocked in Canada, Japan, Mexico, United States. The second version begins with Martin Gore looking to his right as the song begins. This version omits the shots of Gahan singing directly to the camera. The video ends with Gahan sitting on a deck chair in the snow while the last line, «Enjoy the silence.», is sung. There are also differences in the group shots of the band standing together between the two versions.

In 1990, a promotional video for «Enjoy the Silence» was shot by French TV (for the TV Show «Champs-Élysées» with Michel Drucker) featuring Depeche Mode lip-synching the song while standing atop the World Trade Center at the WTC rooftop World observatory, south Tower #2.

(Wikipedia)

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