Depeche Mode’s ninth album was made with Dave Gahan recovering from heroin addiction. That gives context to the ragged desperation in his voice on gnarly opener “Barrel of a Gun,” but he’s controlled and persuasive on “It’s No Good”’s tense pulse, and there’s an eerie calm throughout Ultra. With in-house arranger Alan Wilder departing, Bomb the Bass supremo Tim Simenon arrives to apply some hip-hop gloss, particularly on the simmering electro-soul of “The Love Thieves” and the tender, orchestral “Home.”

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