The band's last albums of the 1980s, Black Celebration and Music for the Masses, established them as a dominant force on the mainstream electronic music scene. A highlight of this era was the band's concert at the Pasadena Rose Bowl, where they drew a crowd in excess of 70,000 people. In the new decade, Depeche Mode released Violator, a mainstream success. The subsequent album, Songs of Faith and Devotion, and the supporting Devotional Tourexacerbated tensions within the band to the point where Alan Wilder quit in 1995, leading to intense media and fan speculation that the band would split. Now a trio once again, the band released Ultra in 1997, recorded at the height of Gahan's near-fatal drug abuse, Gore's alcoholism and seizures, and Fletcher's depression. The release of Exciter confirmed Depeche Mode's willingness to remain together, the subsequent, and very successful, Exciter Tourbeing their first tour in support of an original album in eight years since the Devotional Tour, although the band had toured in 1998 to support The Singles 86–98 compilation album.
Depeche Mode have had 50 songs in the UK Singles Chart and seventeen top 10 albums in the UK chart; they have sold over 100 million records worldwide. Q included the band in the list of the "50 Bands That Changed the World!". Depeche Mode also rank number 98 on VH1's "100 Greatest Artists of All Time"