“Home” by Depeche Mode

Depeche Mode’s “Home” is considered to be a confessional track by Martin Gore concerning the alcoholism he was dealing with at the time. And it wasn’t just him, as the entire band was reportedly caught up in an overall cycle of negativity, which included drug abuse, during those years. That is to say that even though he is relaying this track from a first-person perspective, it has been interpreted that he is also relaying sentiments based on the experiences of his bandmate, Dave Gahan.

You can view the lyrics, alternate interprations and sheet music for Depeche Mode's Home at Lyrics.org.


The first three verses detail the depression the singer is going through – albeit through the utilization of heavy-handed metaphors. For instance, in the first verse alone, the narrator depicts himself as being lost, lonely and repressed. And in the second verse he alludes to being in “the emptiest state”, “a cage” and bearing a burden likened to “the heaviest cross ever made”. Moreover the third verse follows a similar tune but relies on similes so elaborate that they may very well point to some truly-private experiences in the singer’s life.

However, fourth verse takes on a different tone. The singer is now apparently seeking help getting over this condition from a higher power. Yet he expresses something like a sense of disbelief, as in he knows that he will ultimately go back to his old, destructive ways. Or another way of looking at it is that fate has already written his story, which is probably the ultimate sign of addiction, as in when the individual affected no longer believes he can ever beat the urge.


As for the chorus itself, the singer is thanking the addressee for ‘showing him home’, thus the title of the song. Now given the overall allegorical nature of the lyrics, this thesis phrase can be interpreted in a number of ways.  However, being that this is indeed a confessional song, it can point of the idea of the singer somehow being relieved due to finally letting the world know his secret, if you will. That’s why in the next line he proclaims that he is “singing… tears”. Moreover he actually states that he’s now found a sense of belonging, which in fact is a form of relief.


So conclusively, we can say that Martin is not only confessing but also celebrating. The resultant freedom he feels from confessing has given him a reason to celebrate, even if he doesn’t necessarily have faith that he can completely overcome his addiction. And composing such songs of “redemption”, as Dave Gahan has stated, was Martin Gore’s modus operandi during those days.

Lyrics of “Home” by Depeche Mode

Facts about “Home”

“Home” was written by Depeche Mode’s regular songwriter, band member Martin Gore. However, this is one of the rare cases in which he was in charge of singing the song also.

And the track was produced by Tim Simenon.

“Home” was released by Mute Records on 16 June 1997. It was the third single from the album Depeche Mode released that year entitled “Ultra”.

“Home” made it onto both the UK Singles Chart and the Billboard Hot 100, in addition to charting in Spain, Australia and a few other countries.

3 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    “Home” is an allegory for accepting an early death. The singer is sarcastically thanking the listener for having shown them that the singer should have never been born in the first place, that he finally understands after years of moving forward through the many disappointments in life that death is something he should have known from his first moments.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I thought it was about coming out gay. Either way it is a beautiful song. The best version ever is the “Live in Barcelona” one, very moving. It tugs at the feels. 🙂

  3. Anonymous says:

    I thought the video was showing the history of a single “home” and the various people who lived there. The song itself makes me think of someone struggling with drug (or other) addictions.

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