Depeche Mode is selling more concert tickets than some of today’s hottest pop stars

Nearly 40 years after its formation, the ‘80s electronic band from the UK is experiencing an insane comeback.


December 7, 2017

Nearly 40 years after its formation, the ‘80s electronic band from the UK is experiencing an insane comeback: in the first 9 months of 2017, they’ve sold 1.27m tickets.

That’s more than the group has ever sold in a single year — and more than the likes of Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars, Justin Bieber, or Drake.

Dad’s back, babyyy

Depeche’s success is a sign of “The Great Dad-Rock Resurgence” — a curious trend of has-been bands making a huge economic splash by tapping into the oft-forgotten 35+ demographic.

Case in point: the highest-grossing festival of 2016 wasn’t Coachella or Bonnaroo, but Desert Trip — a $160m geezer-fest starring The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney, and The Who. It raked in $160m.

Midway through 2017, 4 of the 5 highest-grossing concert artists were bands formed prior to 1990: Guns N’ Roses, U2, Metallica, and, of course, Depeche Mode.

Dancin’ with the boys

A decade ago, Depeche Mode struggled to fill seats at small venues; this October, they sold out the 17.5k-seat Hollywood Bowl 4 nights in a row, averaging $3m gross per show.

Even more impressive when you consider the band’s never released a #1 hit, has fairly unimpressive streaming figures, and lags behind other major concert artists in album sales.

It’s good, old-fashioned, in-person fun — just how dad likes it.

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