THE gigs of their lives. That’s how Mitzi Fox of electropop outfit, Fox, has described their stadium support slots with legendary Essex band Depeche Mode.

The frontwoman said after last month’s gigs in front of crowds as large as 40,000 people, the band were still on a high.

She grins as she says: “It was soooo good. Better than we could have ever imagined.

“When we were there, the crew warned us sometimes Depeche Mode fans could be a little harsh on the support band, mainly because they want to see the band they’ve come to see, not a band they haven’t heard of, but every gig we did they were incredible.

“Even Depeche Mode themselves were impressed by how well we went down.”

Colchester-based Fox got the gigs after Mitzi contacted Depeche Mode’s Dave Gahan.

He replied and a friendship was struck up which started with some friendly advice, but led to an invitation to see Depeche Mode at the South By South West music conference in Austin, Texas.

A few weeks later, they got an e-mail from the band’s management, asking them to be the sole support for five dates on Mode’s European tour.

As well as Nice and Istanbul, it included dates in Athens, Sofia and Bucharest.

Fox – Mitzi, plus Patrick Monahan and Darren Parker – are probably still best known locally under their former name, Angry Vs the Bear.

Mitzi says: “We’ve had some amazing moments with both bands, but this has to be the best.

“What was funny was when we were travelling to the next gig and you would have these hardcore Depeche Mode fans who were doing the same trip come up to us for our autographs.

“Since we’ve got back, sales of our singles have gone crazy. “I think we must have quadrupled our fan base, mainly with people from Eastern Europe.”

The big break came too late for this year’s festival circuit, but Mitzi is now looking to capitalise on the gigs for next year.

She says: “Unfortunately, the Athens gig had to be cancelled, because Depeche Mode couldn’t get their stuff through the borders. But that might mean we’ll get the support slot when they re-schedule it.

“We’re also planning a UK tour later this year. We’re hoping venues will be impressed by what we’ve achieved already.”

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