Background/Info: German duo Steffen Keth – Thomas Adam are back on track unleashing the 14th full length album from De/Vision. The band is a long-time leader of the alternative electro-pop scene and each new album is a special event for the legions of fans.
Content: De/Vision remains faithful to their successful sound formula. There’s no real need to innovate or explore new paths. “Citybeats” sounds in the purest tradition of the band: well-crafted and efficient electro-pop with this typical melancholic flavor on top. Several songs can be again related to Depeche Mode, but throughout the years the band also established a more personal and recognizable sound. Steffen Keth remains one of the best singers from the electro-pop genre and still is one of the main strengths of the work. A few cuts are a little less harder for the addition of guitar parts.
+ + + : De/Vision stands for a great sound and achieved compositions. “Citybeats” doesn’t sound that different and again reveals the impressive writing skills of this formation. The opening cuts are a tiny hesitant, but the already familiar “They Won’t Silence Us” appears to be the real take off. This is a great song followed by another impressive track (cf. “Not In My Nature”). The final part of the album reveals a few harder cuts and I want to tip “A Storm Is Rising” and “A Last Goodbye”.
– – – : De/Vision has accomplished the album the fans were waiting for. It sounds in the purest tradition of De/Vision and that’s maybe what I regret after all these years. There’s no real surprise so after a while it all starts to be predictable. The opening cuts are perfectly illustrating this kind of stagnation.
Conclusion: De/Vision remains a master formation in the electro-pop scene and simply confirms their endless talent. Some will affirm “Citybeats” is a masterpiece, but I think the magic is a bit gone and has been replaced by a déjà-vu effect.
Best songs: “Not In My Nature”, “They Won’t Silence Us”, “A Storm Is Rising”, “A Last Goodbye”.
Since you’re here … … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading Side-Line Magazine than ever but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. Side-Line’s independent journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we want to push the artists we like and who are equally fighting to survive. If everyone who reads our reporting, who likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure. For as little as 2 US$, you can support Side-Line Magazine – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. The donations are safely powered by Paypal.