“Even the honey is tied up,” Dave Gahan said halfway through his remarkable show at New York’s Apple store in Soho last night to celebrate the release of his fantastic second solo record, Hourglass. Though likely an off the cuff and innocuous remark, those of us who delight in double entendres, or rather, take too literally the words that seemingly just tumble out of the mouths of rock stars, it was a saucily suggestive quip nonetheless.

Unfortunately, the remark was indeed innocuous, and actually rather honest. It was in reference to his taped-up, blackened honey bottle, and not a self-referential, winking nod to his outlook on life. At least, it probably wasn’t.

Playing an incredibly loud, throbbing six-song, 45-minute preview of Hourglass to a packed house of devoted fans and underground New York comedy stars, Gahan was the picture of good health, very dapper, smiling and in good spirits as he shimmied in his “Dancin’ Dave” way (which sometimes resembles Jagger’s Rooster dance) and tore the Apple stage up with his tight backing band, the Jupiters.

Hourglass lead track “Saw Something” kicked the night off with a serpentine groove, as the audience sung along and howled calls of “I love you Dave!” at the swaying singer. A delicate ode to self-actualization, Gahan considers the tune to be “a starting point for something new in my life,” according to his press release.

Hit single “Kingdom” followed with a fierce, looping synth line and plenty of swagger. “Dancin’ Dave” was in full effect to the enchantment of the standing-room only crowd as he bellowed in his trademark baritone his questioning of the concept of a better place.

“Deeper and Deeper” came off like an aural sex toy, in its provocative, primal come-ons and sweaty pillow talk. This tune in particular is a genius vehicle for Gahan that calls to mind Depeche Mode’s equally sexual catalog, and will no doubt be a massive club hit. A robust and fat “Use You” was next, with lots of smiles and pleased giggles from the honey-suckling vocalist.

“Endless,” “A Little Lie” and final song “Miracles” proved to the rapt audience that while Hourglass might be the album’s reflective title and vibe, there’s no time ticking away here in Gahan’s case. Just the grains of his hard won mortality and the tidal grooves that come with it. “Miracles,” a gentle lullaby of a love song, finds Gahan at his most vulnerable as he admits, “I don’t believe in miracles,” and concedes to the power of love and the changes it has brought in his life, closing with “I’m just afraid of losing you.”

Stunning sentiments from a likewise captivating personality. Hourglass could be a misnomer. With the honesty Gahan allows himself to express out loud here, he might just have all the time in the world after all. Let’s continue to hope so. –Carrie Alison, Photo by Carrie Alison