Anton Corbijn

ANTON: Did Andy realize what Depeche Mode meant when you started the band?

ANDY: We knew it was a French magazine.

sonicmod: Welcome to the chat featuring

photographer Anton Corbijn and Andy

Fletcher from Depeche Mode.

Racheal: Andy, what plans do

you have cooking with DM in the future?

ANDY: We just finished a video for a track

called "Useless" in a Welsh pit under very bleak


ANDY: Anton, why have you

got a pre - occupation with trees and naked girls?

ANTON: I think it's more Andy

focusing in on those things. I think the nature thing comes up

quite often in my videos because I like to do them outdoors.

sonicmod: What was the first project that you

guys work on together?

ANTON: I photographed Depeche Mode

for NME in 1980 or '81. When we really worked

together it was in '86 on a video "Question of Time."

modey: Andy, as a longtime

devotee, it gets rather offensive when people imply that you are

a lesser member of DM from a musical standpoint.

Do you take offense to that also and how do you deal with it??

ANDY: I get paid the same money.

Giorgio: Do you prefer making shots of Depeche

Mode in colors or b/w?

ANTON: Black and white.

Giorgio: Which is the object on the sleeve of


ANTON: The image underneath the lettering is

Dave's hand. Very dark against a lighter stone and I made

lettering on top of the image in a complex way.

gravedigga: When did you know that DM

would be a group that you would focus a lot of your attention on?

ANTON: I realized we were working together on

the third video which was "Never Let Me Down Again."

This is when I realized we were becoming a bit of a team.

ANDY: Anton, what is your

favorite airport in the world?

ANTON: Schiphol airport in Holland.

guest181: How is Dave?

ANDY: Dave is on better form than me.

ANDY: Would you make a porno film, Anton?

ANTON: Not with you. I know that one of the

members of DM would do the music for me if I


sonicmod: Anton, do you send

subliminal messages through the different forms of media that you


ANTON: Sometimes I send subliminal messages.

Raven: Fletch, do you read

Bong, the mailing list?

ANDY: Yes, we should be more involved with

it, though.

TWTW: Andy, can you give us

any details about the upcoming greatest hits album?

ANDY: We are about to start recording new

material. So hopefully for next year.

modey: Andy, how is Grainne

doing? We had the opportunity to chat with her after a St. Pete,

Florida show, a few years back.

ANDY: Grainne's problem is me, other than

that she is doing great.

Giorgio: Hey Fletch, this is

Giorgio Minale. What about Italy vs. England?

ANDY: The better team drew.

dirtgirl: Anton, what is

your favorite video you have made?

ANTON: It's hard to answer. I've made over 50

videos and I would like to mention a few that I really like.

Starting with DM "Its No Good,"

"Useless," "Walking In My Shoes," Personal

Jesus" and "Behind The Wheel" . Outside of DM I

really like the U2 video I did called "Please" a video

with Johnny Cash "Delia is Gone", Metallica video for

"Hero of the Day", Nirvana video "Heartshaped

Box" and very old video for the 80's for a band called Joy

Division, a song called "Atmosphere."

modey: Andy, how can we get

you and the other band members to become more involved with Bong

on the net?

ANDY: It's down to us making the effort, and

now our office is closer.

stylz: Anton- How has your

creative look on videos, pictures, album covers, etc. changed

with Alan not being part of DM?

ANTON: It opened an opportunity to play drums

on Top of The Pops. On a more practical level it

hasn't changed that much. In a way the contact I have with the

band has become more direct because there are less voices.

Visually I do prefer three people instead of four regardless of

who the three are.

NirvClub: What was it like to work with


ANTON: Nirvana, pretty brilliant actually.

TobiasW_: Have you photographed Cardigans or

Sophie Zelmani yet?

ANTON: Cardigans no, Sophie yes. And I even

photographed Ulf Lundell.

Raven: Andy, what is your

favorite city?

ANDY: London, NY are my two favorite cities.

stylz: Does Depeche Mode

expect to make any Canadian stops on their next tour?

ANDY: We always do.

Jonathan: Your work has had a profound impact

on my own photography. Who were some of your influences?

ANTON: Influences are definitely Robert

Frank, somebody called W Eugene Smith, Josef Sudek, Irving Penn,

amongst others. In music photography I was inspired by Elliot

Landy, Michael Cooper, amongst others.

saucytrt: How did you manage to let Michael

Stipe pose with his trousers on his shoes?

ANTON: If you know Michael, you know it's

hard for him to put his trousers on.

NirvClub: Anton, you have

worked with so many great bands, what band did you enjoy working

most with ?

ANTON: Obviously people I've worked with for

a long time are amongst my favorites and I would include Depeche


Raven: Andy, what kind of food is there at

your restaurant?

ANDY: We try to call it global.

ANTON: Fletch, are you still

eating porridge?

ANDY: I am into all bran at the moment.

ANTON: How's your personal trainer?

ANDY: I sacked him after he started training


ANTON: So you must be out of prison.

modey: Andy, when is the

last time you listened to Black Celebration? Do

you still find yourself listening to Ultra for

the fun of it? I think I recall you saying that even

post-production, you were still enjoying the album.

ANDY: I think that Black Celebration

is one of our most underrated albums, and I was even listening to

Ultra last night in my hotel room. Is that


TobiasW_: Do you like Ulf Lundell? Have you

photographed Larsvon Trier yet?

ANTON: No, I have not photographed Larsvon

yet, and Ulf Lundell is a great man and I really like his new CD

that comes out in November.

saucytrt: Are your pictures still published

in Dutch magazine OOR? Are you yourself coming

back to Holland often?

ANTON: I stopped publishing in OOR.

I come to Holland ten to twenty times a year to Holland.

ANDY: If you love Holland so much why don't

you fucking go back there?

gigi: Andy, when did you

first start playing music, and are you married?

ANDY: Yes, I am married. I started playing

music when I was 13. But I haven't got much better since.

miajoon: Anton, how do you

pick the bands you work with?

ANTON: It's a mix between if I like the

people, the music or I like the money and that's as honest as I

can be. But many people don't realize is that I try to photograph

very many film people. Very recently I photographed Clint

Eastwood and Time Roth, and Ewan McGregor and Cameron Diaz. The

pictures can be found in Entertainment Weekly,

W and Ikon.

Jonathan: I have read that when you shoot,

you actually use very simple techniques for complex results. What

are some of those techniques? How can I apply them to my own


ANTON: The main answer is that photography is

not about technique but about attitude. Go figure.

ANDY: Anton, serious

question. Why do you work so hard?

ANTON: It's in my blood and also I have so

many ideas coming up that I feel I am only just beginning.

ANTON: Andy, why do you earn

so much?

ANDY: I try and aspire to what you earn. My

fear is that I will never reach it!

ANDY: Jealousy.

ANTON: Nuff said.

ANTON: Andy, what is your favorite music


ANDY: Mary Poppins.

ANTON: Did Andy realize what Depeche

Mode meant when you started the band?

ANDY: We knew it was a French magazine.

ANDY: We ask again are you interested in

making a porn movie, cause Martin is interested in doing the


ANTON: That's what I suggested because I knew

that there would be someone in DM that would be

interested in doing the music and that was Martin.

sonicmod: Andy, what do you think of KROQ, in

terms of how they launched DM in LA and for that

matter, the USA.

ANDY: It's always strange because in England,

there was never a station like it that played alternative music.

gigi: Songs of Faith and Devotion

is your best album. What do you think?

ANDY: It's our fifth best.

sonicmod: Fletch, is it an

accident that you hire hot girls at your restaurant and have you

fraternized with any of them?

ANDY: I try my hardest but I end up being

their counselor.

yunim: What have you been doing in NYC? Are

you single?

ANDY: I wish I was single, I am just on


sonicmod: Anton, is there going to be a book


ANTON: I have an exhibition opening in

Goteborg in Sweden tomorrow and I'm doing two lectures. I did a

lecture in Pasadena in June. I've had more than ten exhibitions

this year all over the world.

sonicmod: Andy, what is your

opinion of vodka?

ANDY: Too dangerous to think about it.

Tdub: Andy, will you be

taking on new members to the group or will this trio remain?

ANDY: We will remain as a trio but will use

other musicians. No one gets on with Alan.

ANTON: Good answer.

stylz: Andy, how much

involvement do you have with DM's music?

Recording, writing, etc.?

ANDY: Total.

ANTON: Andy, what's your

favorite Dutch band?

ANDY: Golden Earring and MC Mike.

ANTON: Oh God. Only because they get to

number one there and DM don't.

Kutuz_off: Is Depeche Mode

ever going to perform in Russia?

ANDY: Hopefully next year.

ANDY: Have you considered doing a Penguin

book of your photos?

ANTON: Ya, you're on the cover. But I don't

think this conversations' going very far.

ANDY: Anton, where did you

get your sense of humor?

ANTON: I think I have so much spare time

while the three members of DM lined up that I

used my time for something else. p.s. We all know that DM

stands for Dutch Master.

Kutuz_off: Andy, what do you

think about Depeche Mode music

files available on the Net?

ANDY: The quality, the sound is not great at

the moment other than that, no objections.

Giorgio: Hey Fletch, this is

Giorgio, how many new tracks will you put in the greatest hits

next year?

ANDY: Two hundred and fifty four. Only


Null: Andy, you've known

Vince Clarke for ages. Do you have any personal opinions on his

more recent music?

ANDY: I think he should take a few more


Jonathan: What is your feeling on digital

photography and the manipulation of images?

ANTON: Digital photography I know very little

about, but I'm going to test it in the next three weeks. Since

manipulation by computer I think photography has changed

dramatically in the way of honesty in the that you can never look

at the same picture the same way again. I have manipulated some

photographs for DM for the single CD for

"Its No Good". As you might have noticed, Fletch's arms

are longer, Dave's head is bigger and Martin's upper body has


saucytrt: Anton, is this

exhibition also coming to Amsterdam?

ANTON: No, but there will be a new exhibition

with new material in Amsterdam next year. This exhibition that's

here in Sweden has been in Holland in the museum in Helmond this

past summer.

modey: Andy, is Martin in NY


ANDY: No, he is in England, he has just got

back from the England /Italy game.

sonicmod: Anton, where did

the idea for the "It's No Good" come from?

ANTON: Purely by the title. "It's No

Good" video idea I transformed DM into a no

hope band where everything was no good, myself included and even

the editing of the particular video is officially no good as I

used a lot of double takes editing where you see the same action


ANDY: Anton, I have to go

clubbing now and you can't join the band. See you in London next


ANTON: I hope the people have a chance to see

the new video for "Useless" in America. Goodbye.