Precious (Depeche Mode song)

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Depeche Mode Precious.jpg
Single by Depeche Mode
from the album Playing the Angel
B-side "Free"
Released 3 October 2005
11 October 2005 (12")
Format 12", CD, DVD, digital download
Recorded January–July 2005, Sound Design
(Santa Barbara, California)
Genre Alternative dance, synthpop, electronic rock ("Precious")
Dance-pop, electronica ("Free")
Length 70:22
Label Mute
Writer(s) Martin Gore
Producer(s) Ben Hillier
Depeche Mode singles chronology
"Enjoy the Silence 04"
"A Pain That I'm Used To"
Music sample
Music video
"Precious" on YouTube
Playing the Angel track listing
"The Sinner in Me"

"Precious" is Depeche Mode's forty-first single, and the first single from the album Playing the Angel. It was released on 3 October 2005 in the UK by Mute Records and 11 October 2005 in the US by Sire/Reprise. The single reached No. 4 in the UK, No. 71 on the Hot 100, and No. 23 on the US Modern Rock Tracks chart.

It was the band's first single of original music in more than three years. "Precious" was released to international radio stations and as a digital download on 22 August 2005. Since its live debut, "Precious" has been played at every Depeche Mode concert between 2005 and 2014.


Although the meaning of almost all of Depeche Mode's songs are not revealed because Martin Gore prefers people to find their own meanings for each song, he made an exception with "Precious", revealing that the song is written about his children and what they must have been going through when he was getting a divorce from their mother.[citation needed]

Music video[edit]

To accompany the new single and album, a program called the Depeche Mode Receiver was released. The video for "Precious" received its worldwide premiere via this program on 12 September 2005.

An early version of the video (with unfinished rendering and many sketch placeholders) was leaked to the internet long before the song was even out, so most fans were able to listen to "Precious" about two months ahead of the release. In fact, the digital download may not have even been released if not for the leak, which was widespread within days.

The music video for "Precious" features the band performing on an empty, computer-generated cruise ship, before walking out into an alien-looking (also CG) forest. The video was directed by Uwe Flade, who directed the "Enjoy the Silence 04" video. It is streamable for free on the Depeche Mode website in the archives.


"Free" is the B-side to "Precious". It's a techno beat with an old school feel. It was unavailable in the US, aside from importing, but is now available on iTunes. It also appears as a bonus track on the Japanese version of Playing the Angel. There is no remix of the song, aside from an early version that was heard at the Touring the Angel press conference, as shown on the Playing the Angel Electronic Press Kit, however, the full/stand-alone version is not available for download or purchase at this time.

Other appearances[edit]

"Precious" was also featured in Smallville's fifth season premiere episode. The song was also played during episodes of the TV shows Bones, Charmed (Season 8 episode "Payback's a Witch"), and CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

Trance act Blank & Jones remixed the single though their production has yet to be released. However, they have played their remix out during their live DJ sets.


Chart performance[edit]


The single was released to digital downloads and to shops on the same day, 3 October 2005. It was added to XFM's playlist in mid-September. It also made it to BBC Radio 2's A-List. On 2 October 2005 it reached No. 49 on the UK airplay chart, jumping to No. 27 on 16 October 2005. On 9 October 2005 the single debuted at No. 4 on the UK Singles Chart, giving them their highest UK chart position in eight years (since "Barrel of a Gun" in 1997), and also matching that of "People Are People" in 1984. The single spent a total of five weeks on the chart.


"Precious" reached No. 71 on the Billboard Hot 100 and No. 23 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart. It was Depeche Mode's first single to make either chart since 2001's "Dream On". The song also topped both the Hot Dance Music/Club Play and the Hot Dance Singles Sales charts.

"Precious" was originally released to US radio and digital download on 22 August 2005. Soon after this release, it reached No. 70 on the Billboard Pop 100, No. 53 on the Hot Digital Songs chart, and No. 47 on the Hot Digital Tracks chart.

Over the next two months, grew to be supported by 53 US alternative rock radio stations. During this time, it climbed up the Modern Rock Tracks from an original debut at No. 38 on 8 October 2005 to No. 24 on 25 November 2005. It remained at No. 24 throughout December and finally peaked at No. 23 on 7 January 2006.

"Precious" was released to stores in the US on 11 October 2005. One week later, on the chart dated 29 October 2005, it reached at No. 3 on the Hot 100 Singles Sales chart and also debuted on the Hot 100 at No. 99, after "bubbling under" the week before. This same day it topped both the Hot Dance Music/Club Play and the Hot Dance Singles Sales charts and reached No. 27 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart.

The next week, on 5 November 2005, "Precious" reached No. 1 on the Singles Sales chart. This propelled it to No. 71 on the Hot 100 and No. 52 on the Pop 100.

"Precious" debuted at No. 39 on the Adult Top 40 on 3 December 2005. It reached No. 32 on 31 December 2005.

Formats and track listing[edit]

These are the formats and track listings of major single releases of "Precious"

Credits: Music Video[edit]

  • Director: Uwe Flade
  • Editing: Markus Gerwinat
  • Creative Direction, Designs: Niklas Briner
  • Photography: Fabian Hothan
  • Post-production: Effekt-Etage, Berlin
  • Producer: Mark Entzelmann
  • Shoot Location: London, United Kingdom
  • Production Company: Q Film, Hamburg
  • Label: Mute Records UK, 2005


Chart (2005) Peak
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[1] 9
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[2] 26
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Wallonia)[3] 4
Canada (Nielsen SoundScan)[4] 2
Denmark (Tracklisten)[5] 1
Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)[6] 2
France (SNEP)[7] 32
Germany (Official German Charts)[8] 2
Hungary (Mahasz)[9] 1
Ireland (IRMA)[10] 12
Italy (FIMI)[11] 1
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[12] 11
Norway (VG-lista)[13] 4
Poland (ZPAV)[14] 1
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[15] 1
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[16] 1
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[17] 12
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[18] 4
US Modern Rock Tracks 23
US Billboard Hot 100[19] 71
US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play[19] 1
US Hot 100 Singles Sales 1
US Hot Dance Singles Chart 1
US Hot Digital Tracks 47
US Billboard Hot Digital Songs[19] 50
US Billboard Pop 100[19] 52
US Adult Top 40 32
Year End Chart (2005) Peak
Spanish Singles Chart[20] 7

See also[edit]


External links[edit]