If the Cure’s Robert Smith is the godfather of emo, then Dave Gahan is certainly a beloved uncle, thanks to his role as the frontman of Depeche Mode. But being an icon to a generation of eyeliner-wearing, synth-based bands that dig DM’s darkly romantic ditties (”Enjoy the Silence,” anyone?) lately has Gahan, 45, fearing that ”the death of the rock star is leering in the future for me.” And so he titled his second solo CD Hourglass.
”It is all about running out of time,” says the singer, whose own time was almost up when a 1996 drug overdose left him clinically dead for two minutes. Now clean for 11 years, the Brit-born New Yorker appears trim and absolutely boyish. ”When I perform, I feel like a 25-year-old jumping up on that stage.” Yet following a recent Rolling Stones show, ”I came away [thinking] they should just stop. The performance was great, [but] I was thinking, ‘Wow, is that what I look like?”’ Gahan’s plan: to challenge himself to stay relevant. ”[DM] are aware of the importance of making a record that is current and not becoming parodies of ourselves.”
For a taste of what Gahan’s up to now, check out this EW.com exclusive, the dance remix of ”Kingdom,” the first single from Hourglass.