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Depeche Mode by Anton Corbijn

The official illustrated history of Depeche Mode by  Anton Corbijn


Legendary Dutch photography and artist Anton Corbijn has created Depeche Mode by Anton Corbijn, a new book which offers an illustrated history of Depeche Mode drawing on 500 photographs from Corbijn’s personal archives, accrued over three decades in collaboration with “the world’s biggest cult band”.

The special collector’s edition is a 512-page hardcover book that measures 31.5cm x 44cm, weighs almost 6kg and comes in a clamshell box. Each collector’s edition (numbered 201 – 1986) is signed by Anton Corbijn and Depeche Mode.


Each collector’s edition is signed by Depeche Mode and Anton Corbijn


As well as all the photos – some never seen before – the book offers stage set designs, sketches, album covers, and personal observations from Corbijn.



The book includes formal and informal portraits from places such as Madrid, Hamburg, the California desert, Prague, and Marrakech (many taken during the making of iconic videos such as ‘Enjoy the Silence’ and ‘Personal Jesus’); many off-the-cuff, candid images; and stunning live shots from all their tours since 1988.



The book has been created with the full collaboration of the band, who also share some insights on working with Corbijn. Anton also provides handwritten captions throughout the book (see image above) and there is an extended interview with him. Check out the video below, as the man himself, shows off the special SIGNED collector’s edition.



The first two hundred limited editions with an additional signed print have already sold out, but copies of the collector’s edition on its own, numbered between 201 and 1986 are available to order via the publishers Taschen directly. These will ship in November.



SuperDeluxeEdition.com helps fans around the world discover physical music and discuss releases. To keep the site free, SDE participates in various affiliate programs, including Amazon and earns from qualifying purchases.

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[…] Corbijn was published last year as a limited numbered/signed edition and came in a clamshell box. That £750 tome sold out very quickly, but the good news for fans is that a standard edition is coming next month […]

Nico

It’s a disgrace to charge this amount for a book. Especially during a pandemic with so many out of work and homeless. Quite disgusting.

Bookshop

These Limited Editions are still available to purchase in the Selfridges London Bookshop on Oxford Street.

Darek

Yeah, but how can I buy it now?

Luke Underwood

I have just taken delivery of mine. I really wasn’t sure if I had done the “right thing” by shelling out for this, but I had 3 holidays cancelled and this was the equivalent of a week in Majorca that I didn’t have, and I am happy I did buy it. Its huge though!

Marc

As a hardcore DM fan and collector since 1983, and a big fan a corbijn’s work, i had to get one of the collectors edition. The Taschen collector editions are a thing of beauty! The quality and details are stunning. They also use a different type of paper compared to the standard version.

And yes, you can see this book as an investment.
I was told by Taschen, that the DM AC collectors edition ist the fastest selling collectors edition for Taschen in 15-20 years. That speaks volumes. The price will go up, now that it’s sold out.

But i’m shure there will be some copies available at the Taschen book stores in december.

Jhonn

That was really fast. All 1986 copies are now sold out. So, the price seems not to be too high for many collectors and connoisseurs of fantastic books. And the limited supersize Taschen are really top-notch books.

Adey

Never tried taschen books but i have a couple of Bowie books, published by genesis publications(speed of life and from station to station. Before i ordered the books, i always thought they were a bit expensive at several hundred pounds for a book and a picture disc. When i opened the first parcel i just thought WOW, I’ve never seen such stunning books, of such amazing quality, in my life!

John MC cann

I remember there was a ltd edition George Harrison book out about 20 years ago signed by George, cost about a grand!, Probably worth a lot more now!

David J

I made an enquiry direct to Taschen regards to getting a specific numbered edition.
Reply – you get the next one out of the warehouse, no choice or selection of numbered edition!!
They also 100% confirmed a smaller, unsigned, unlimited version will follow ‘next year’.

An alternative to this XXL book (i did it 3 months back) is to get a signed lithograph of the early DM album covers taken by Brian Griffin. I bought three actually for a quarter of this book cost all hand signed by the photographer himself. 12″ x 12″ superb quality prints and some decent frames – much better value IMO.

Ex-Oligarch

What a great suggestion! Brian Griffin is one of those guys whose work everyone who was alive in the 1980s has seen even if they don’t recognize his name. Think of Ultravox’s “Vienna” album, John Foxx’s “Golden Section,” Siouxsie’s “Dazzle” single, or the first four classic Echo & the Bunnymen albums. An extremely talented guy.

Steve

Yes great idea. I bought Brian’s book Pop, signed by himself and Depeche Mode last year.

Ken

Always worth remembering that the more you manufacture of a product the lower the unit price.So if a luxury book is only printed in small quantities it will be expensive to produce.So even though the book is clearly over-priced it still costs a hefty sum to manufacture so could never be sold as cheaply as some if you seem to suggest.

torchomatic

Unfortunately, this is now the way of the world.

Limited edition items at eye watering prices, which only those with lots of disposable income will be able to afford. The rest of us? Hard luck.

Limited vinyl boxsets at ridiculous prices, the Armed Forces box by Costello being a good example of money grabbing. Now it’s £75 to see the Damned, £150 for the UA singles box by Buzzcocks. The punk ethos had certainly been abandoned in favour of something more unsavoury. Greed.

John MC cann

Is it really£75 to see the damned Thea’s days,?;£3.50 damned be Xmas tour 83, Glasgow penthouse above the Apollo,seems a lot but don’t mind the captain making a few Bob and the best bass player they ever had is back,,now we just need the rat!

Fernando GM

750€ is the average price for a Taschen’s limited edition book. It’s not DM’s nor Anton’s fault. It’s what It supposed to cost, just check other limited edition books in Taschen’s web. Some of them they even cost a lot more, it’s what It is, a little piece of art. Don’t want it don’t buy it.

I am one of the lucky person that have decided to buy it. It’s a pity Alan hasn’t signed it. I’ve being a fan for 30 years and I am a working class father in Spain, in the covid19 era, but I just received my taxes back from last year and that’s my very own present. I am not rich or dumb, I guess I’ll have to make some sacrifices for the next 4 months. Staying at home these days will make it a little easier. But reading some smart sentences for angry buyers i need to say some obvious ones, you can’t always get what you want, and if want something you’ll have to pay for it.

David J

1 2 3 4 by Anton Corbijn has a great selection of his music photography including a good selection of Depeche Mode photos repeated in this artbook.

Hardback £33-£38 quid. Signed around £75 as i remember.

Mark A

What a joke. A “Luxury book”? Sorry, what is that, exactly? Oh, it’s a collection of photos of Depeche Mode with some ink at the front. That price might be appropriate for an edition of 25 not 2000.

Wayne C

I actually think of this book as an investment!, if your like me and £750 is quite a lot of money it would really have to be a group or artist you love to put so much money into a book. If Joni Mitchell released
A book like this I would try and buy it, you only live once and what price can you put on the pleasure of owning such a nice thing. I don’t really think value comes into it at the end of the day, owning it is what’s important. If your a fan of Mode to that level it would be a must have and good luck to those who get a copy of it!. It’s like the limited Macca 3 300 LP run. If people are prepared to pay £3000 for one LP which isn’t even out yet!, I think this book is tremendous value and no doubt will appreciate over time.

alan

If it is an investment – when are you going to sell it?
Otherwise it’s just an expensive book by an artist you like.
Investments are usually realised in the marketplace.

probablyrustin

Both description and price are laughable to be honest. Personal opinion, it seems ridiculous to call a *book* like this luxurious unless it’s truly a handmade, bespoke, gold plated etc level of quality. Marketing double entendres and disproportionate pricing can make anything seem “luxurious.”

I seems on some level that Depeche Mode’s back catalog approach is favoring profit over value – interesting releases drowned out by repetitive and objectively expensive products rehashing material with little (if any) added… Not to mention a fantastic package like this presented in a way that just seems out of touch, as others noted. Some interesting items in the process, sure, but mostly feels a bit shameless.

Luke Underwood

Spot on Paul!

Steve

Tashen make these all the time, have done for years. They are expensive and collectible. They are like art. They make them with photographers, artists, designers, directors etc And they are for collectors with money, not the average Joe like us.
Think of it as a piece of art that will go up in value with age.
But thankfully Tashen usually follow the ‘artists edition’ with a regular smaller version at around £50

Andy

This time next year Taschen will release a “trade” edition of the book, they always do with any of their high profile releases. I collect their signed editions but also get the smaller unsigned ones to refer to.

Another pro tip is sometimes they do flash discounts on their limited editions, though not gauranteed and have been in-store only too in the past. Their next sale is in should be at the end of January.

Shane

Taschen are superb at these kinds of books. If you can afford the limited editions, they are worth the price. They always do standard editions down the line, you’ll just have to wait.
“world’s biggest cult band”….

Andrea

To be honest music is what really matter to me and as nice as it looks this book is just a complement to DM discography. Monument is one of the few books I’ve bought on music, because it was made by DM fan for DM fans, going through collectibles and arti facts like any of us did through the years. This book has actually nothing to do with DM, it’s an outrageously priced collection of pictures that happened to have DM as main subject. I don’t think any person with a n average lifestyle would be able to justify to buy this, no matter how collectible this may be, how big DM are in your life. This goes more in the “art market” then it’s price is even a bargain!

Doug Moss

I have a similar book about Mott The Hoople called We’ve Got a Great Future Behind Us. It is printed on top quality papers, signed by all original members and comes in a lided printed box, Released a while ago granted but cost £250 when released. So someone’s earlier point about thr DM’s books production costs is bollox.
Genesis publications and Taschen have always produced extremely good quality but expensive tomes. In the DM case you’re paying for Mr Corbijn’s involvement.
These books are fantastic but for Rich Kids only

Ex-Oligarch

The Mott book is in an small format: less than 8” by 8” and about 250 pages, and was produced on ordinary presses. The equipment and materials used to produce a book like the DM tome, with is 12” by 17”, 512 pages and on heavyweight paper, are not the same. The two books are not comparable.

Ultra-large format books can be produced at lower cost. Some national chain stores in the US do stock a few such coffee table books and children’s books at prices around $50. They are printed on ordinary paper with cheap inks, with low page counts, usually with laminated cardboard covers, sometimes with glued bindings, and in huge print runs. All of those factors reduce the cost. They aren’t durable and tend to fall apart with use, and the print quality is not comparable. I am in the secondhand book business and see these all the time. They are not comparable to quality art book products like those produced by Taschen.

Ex-Oligarch

Incidentally, the Mott book is now very scarce and will run you upwards of $500 for a copy.

Andy

But both Genesis and Taschen limited edition titles tend to go up in value once they sell out of the run, sometimes to crazy amounts. For example I bought deluxe editions of both of the Jimmy Page books that Genesis did, now there’s an eBay lot for both for $12k at the moment.

Ditto with their Paul Weller, Nick Mason, Bowie etc books. All the ones I bought have risen in value from two to five times the price I paid. You simply can’t get that return from the stock market, let alone from a high interest account.

Buy one, enjoy it, then sell it for more than you paid for it… remember to wear white gloves though ;-)

Matthew

I understand the appeal of high end merch like this and those useless Hublot watches for somebody, no condemnation, but try walking in my shoes. It´s no good. :(

Michael

Would really love a copy of this amazing book, but the prize is just way over my budget. If the prize was in the area of the Depeche Mode Monument book, I would buy it instantly. Will there be copies, not signed by Anton Corbijn and cheaper?

Ex-Oligarch

I just noticed that along with the DM book, Taschen is publishing a new edition of its book of photographs of the Rolling Stones in November, priced at $80 and in 11.8” by 11.8” format. So, probably within reach for a few of us who could never afford the Corbiijn extravaganza.

For comparison, the Stones book was originally published in 2014 in a giant 20” by 20” format limited edition signed by all current band members, priced at $6,000 (yes, that’s right). There were a series of art editions with photo prints by some of the great photographers who had shot the band, beginning at $10,000 and up. The one featuring Corbijn’s print was $20,000, but it sold out, as did the limited edition (there are still copies available of a few of the art editions by lesser-known photographers).

That was followed by a 13” by 13” regular edition of the book, priced at $150. It too sold out, with copies going on the used book market for around $500.

The forthcoming edition is still an oversized coffee table book, but a little smaller in format and roughly 50 pages shorter.

Ken

Though this will probably upset most folk who are not rich I feel I should point out that there exist quite a lot of people on our earth with annual incomes that exceed £1m.So if you have a high income prices most of us find obscene are small change and easily affordable.As in everything in life it is all proportional to your own financial circumstances.Sadly one person’s extreme price is another person’s bargain.Picasso paintings get sold for £40m or more for example.It might be obscene but it happens because someone somewhere can afford to pay!

Fletchy Fletch

1986 X 750 quid = 1,489,500 quid.

Nice work if you can get it! Top up that pension fund lads!

Andy

Then take off 20% for VAT, then 40%-50% for retail markup, 10% for marketing and promotion, 20% for design, production and manufacturing… then divide it by 4 (Anton and the band).

Ex-Oligarch

Usually I’m the guy complaining about profiteering on deluxe editions, but I think many of the commenters don’t appreciate the production costs on a book of this large format. Just printing in high quality on heavy paper at over 12 x 17 inches is a substantial expense, much more so than even an ordinary art book. The binding on a 512 page book of that size also has to be particularly well made or the weight of the book itself will tear it apart when it is handled. Any well-made book in this format will be expensive, and to its credit Taschen maintains extraordinarily high production standards on its luxury editions.

To put it in perspective, the packaging of most music SDEs does not involve these sorts of printing and binding costs. They are usually printed on ordinary card and paper, and you’re lucky if the binding of the booklet is sewn rather than glued or even stapled. Judging by some of the ones in my collection, you’re lucky if the materials have been properly edited and proofed before manufacture.

Make no mistake, though, the Taschen limited editions are a luxury product for the wealthy. But while I have no doubt there is profit built into the price, I don’t think these editions are substantially subsidizing the regular and budget editions that Taschen inevitably issues when the limited editions have sold out. The limited editions are prestige items designed to burnish the publisher’s reputation as a fashionable presence in the art world and among the upper class. It’s very much the same reason Taschen operates retail stores in Beverly Hills, South Beach, St. Germain, Claridge’s, and Chelsea (London) — to add some cachet to the brand. The company’s market image might otherwise be more like the Ikea of the art publishing industry, because its standard editions are usually priced affordably and well designed but sold to a mass audience.

As a few others have mentioned, the art editions sold with prints are a fantastic deal for collectors of contemporary photography, which is why they sell out so quickly.

So what is a DM fan without buckets of money to do? Some copies from the limited edition may make it out to third-party retailers who may offer a discount. And if Taschen sticks to its usual business strategy, expect a release of a smaller oversize edition in a year or so in the $150-$200 list range; a regular art book edition, perhaps with a lower page count, a year or so after that, at $65-$80 list; and then bargain editions in various reduced formats in the $15-$30 range thereafter.

The other option is to keep an eye out for the publisher’s semi-annual sale of shopworn and overstock copies, held both online and in the retail stores. The discounts on these can range 25%-75%, and the damage to the books is often minimal — dinged corners, scuffed covers, dented slipcases, that sort of thing. I would expect the DM book to start showing up at the sale late next summer.

Glen Withonen

Thank you for your informed and well written comment. It makes a nice change from the hysterical indignation expressed elsewhere by all the ‘true/devoted/since [inset year] DM fans’ that always greats such news.

Personally, I knew as soon as I received the email directly from Taschen that this would definitely be one of those expensive XXL art editions they are famous for, something I would likely not be able to afford, even at the best of times. Being Taschen though, I also knew that this giant expensive tome would not be the sole edition of this lovingly designed book. Knowing Taschen always issue multiple formats over time for all their premium titles, I resigned myself to the fact I would probably never own this particularly collectible volume, but consoled myself that more affordable options were almost certainly on the horizon.

Having said that, I must also remember to say that I really appreciate all the hard work Anton Corbijn and Taschen must have put into creating such a beautiful retrospective, and career-defining book – it is indeed something I had long-hoped to see published! So I very much look forward to purchasing and enjoying a somewhat smaller (but still over-sized), unsigned hardback edition of this fantastic book – hopefully next year, or at the latest in 2022.

GW:-)

Andy

I’ve picked up some of their limited editions directly from their stores during these bi-annual sales.

Straker

Taschen does large-format books as a matter of course on art, architecture and pop-culture and these can be found at all booksellers discounted in the £50-£100 range so the idea you’re getting another £600+ worth of value with the DM book or any of their other premium price books is bogus. You’re paying for the signatures and occasionally you might get a print or a fancy box (is that worth hundreds more?).

It is important to remember that Taschen’s print budgets are vast so the expense of printing a book like that which might give smaller publishers a heart-attack is simply par for the course with Taschen. Their standards are phenomenally high across all their output which means us punters are often getting £200 worth of book for £50 or less.

By way of example their Stan Lee book originally came out as a signed edition for nigh on £1k IIRC but a couple of years later I bought the new version (same massive book size) without the signature for @ £70.

Taschen has a subscriber base of very wealthy people who have a standing order for every book they publish regardless of cost. That’s really why these premium price editions exist. The rest of us plebs can often get much the same books for a fraction of the price just by exercising a little patience.

David

Good point. Just picked up the Godfather book for £12 when it’s still £40-£50 on their site and the large format version was over £150!!

Rainer

To think that the founder of Taschen, Benedikt Taschen, started by selling comic books from a garage this price is even more ridiculous. He left the comic fans behind him when he had made enough money and never again cared about the people that made him rich in the first place. Never liked the guy, always acted like being better than his customers when he was behind the counter.

Fletchy Fletch

If you follow the link to Taschen you can have a good look at 20 odd pages of the book & read what the band & AC say. I look forward to a sensibly priced version in due course!

John

I have no interest in this or similar bands but can see how it would be attractive to others. The price is staggering..

Richguy

Actually the book is for free, you just pay for the box. Learn from Bowie, apply to DM :D :D :D

Frank

The comments on this blog always amount to the same: rip-off, milking, taking the piss, etc…

So please tell us, what do you think is a reasonable price for a deluxe book (a category of items you know nothing about and have probably never even owned)

10 quid?

Dara O'Donnell

I’m a fan since I was a teenager and there’s very few Mode-related items I haven’t forked out for over the years. Though I would absolutely love this, I’d rather give the money to charity than pay for this at this time.

Rob

Price is indeed ridiculous, but look at more of those special editions from Taschen than it becomes more “normal” price wise in comparison. These special items are the cash generators, seen items of 5K and even much higher on their site. Don’t think that DM is fully to blame :-)…

Maybe they will issue it as one of the smaller 50€ editions later, after this has sold out.

David

I can’t argue that AC is a great photographer,but his graphic design is not only boring but bordering on ugly,probly from after violator.Its hard to differentiate his work from one album to another.The book looks fantastic but the price point is insulting.

Ex-Oligarch

I agree with you. Corbijn is a great example of how finely-honed skills in one visual art medium do not necessarily translate to another, particularly to graphic design.

Whoever created that cover, it’s awful. Is it intended to bring to mind a brown-paper grocery bag? (And if so, for godsakes, why?)

Greg Hayes

How much!!!!
Are they on the same planet as their devoted fans?!?!!

Heiko

Every limited edition from TASCHEN has a somewhat smaller version for 50 -80 Euro following after a year. If you’re familiar with the amount you have to pay for a Corbijn print, the 1500 Euro print edition was a real offer. But that one was gone hours after the release announcement.

Mark Carter

I am shocked that this ridiculously overpriced item even passed the thought process…NOTHING warrants that price ..NOTHING. Would love it..guess they forgot their humble beginnings in Basildon. Sad

Wayne Kisbee

Sure it’s a nice book, Strangers was a lovely book too but price wise, this is quite astonishing really.

Some people really do have more money than sense and I guess Anton knew that.

Mark Carter

Ridiculously overpriced. A fan but not a wealthy stupid one!!

PhilH

Once you have a limited Taschen edition in your hands you know exactly why you paid so much. As a huge fan I bought this one because I have another one about Bowie and one about Basquiat there are both fantastics. ^^

Russ T

Corbijn has single-handedly decimated DM’s graphic design over the past few decades. He’s a fantastic video producer – but he really needs to leave the graphic design to the professionals. DM have gone from having the most gorgeous artwork – to rivalling only R.E.M. as the band with the most consistently ugly album covers. Appalling. And this book is a pointless, greedy poorly-designed cash-in.

David

100%

Guy

It might be ‘Music for the masses’ but clearly only ‘Books for the rich’.

François HAMON

Maybe taschen will reissue it in a more economical version after this first edition, as they do for some of their books.

SimonP

Riddle me this: if AC has been taking photos of DM since 1986, how are there pics of Vince Clarke in the book?

Simonf

Can I recommended Depeche Mode-Faith And Devotion by Ian Gittins. A full hardback book/biography to mark their 40th anniversary. Wonderfully well put together, a great read, full of photos, with each album given a full two page overview. All comes highly recommended, and is the perfect companion to the MODE album collection box set, and is at just £25, a snip! .

Lindsay

Thanks Simon! Just ordered it for $25, Prime delivery on Tuesday. Didn’t bother to read much about it, I’m trusting your word (yeah yeah, only 2 left in stock = “pressure to move”). Cool.

paul griffiths

far too expensive….especially in a covid world……have a word with yourself anton

Otto

That is one hell of a stunning book. I’d love to look it trough but I never was into any music artists look or style, I like their music (and with Depeche Mode I love their music) so I’m fine. As an art book, from the look of it, it is a stunning collections of photo’s.

Steve W

Lovely book and if I was a huge fan I’d probably HAVE to have it.

Iain Johnson

I’m still attached to the chair I needed after discovering the price of this item … even for a DM fan of over 30 years … absolute insanity … who exactly is this aimed at that would pay such a sum ? …

Fletchy Fletch

Wow, that really is something special. You could almost argue AC made their career, he gave them an image & unique look. It’s impossible for him to take a bad picture!

However, I can’t afford it, I probably could really but there’s no way I could justify that to the family in these economic times.

I will buy the hopefully cheaper version when that comes out. Even that will be stunning.

Don

When Taschen released their insanely awesome “Napoleon” set, I was bummed out, because Kubrick is one of my favorite directors and I wanted those books like nobody’s business. Then, a couple of years later, they released a more affordable, scaled-down version. They did the same thing a few years ago with their “2001: A Space Odyssey” book: a big-ass incredible special edition first, then later a single book edition.

Like Fletchy Fletch, I’m hoping the same thing happens with this book.

Klaus

I love Anton Corbijn’s work, really enjoy books by Taschen and like the band Depeche Mode but not so much that i’d pay 750 EUR for this, not even with scribbles and in a clamshellbox.

Usually Taschen cross-finances editions for the masses with these expensive SDEs so i’ll wait until this is re-released in a year or two for i guess somewhere in the range between 50 and 100 EUR.

andrew r

This discussion is the border between those who have and want to spend 750 on a DM item and those who harrumph about the cost . For lovers of beautiful things who have 750 in disposable income it’s a no brainier . It’s all about money really not the validity of the object . Ps I don’t have enough money but if I did I would buy it .

Alex

What a wonderful book! I’d love to have this but will wait for a regular edition to add to my other Anton Corbijn books.

After spending around 550 euro for various Prince Sign Of The Times releases recently, there’s no more money left at the bank for this great collectors edition.

Great video of Anton Corbijn presenting his book btw.

Love your site Paul! Always looking forward to your new posts!

Neil

For that price I’d expect a far better cover with Vince and Alan’s signatures. Ooh I said it!

Now, how about some deluxe reissues please!

Francois

There are already deluxe reissues for all album from Speak and Spell to Exciter. With SACD and 5.1 mix, event though some of these surround mixes are not up to what you would expect (Walking in my shoes is particularly messy) they exist with extras (albeit all on a DVD). They were imperfect, but they were affordable, and some of these still are cheap on Discogs.

Klaus

:

I bought these all in spring for prices between 15 and 20 EUR because i was interested in the 5.1-mixes and the documentaries and loved that they have the original artwork instead of the “Black pictures and writing on a black background”-mess that was the “Mode”-dice.