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Tears For Fears - Songs From The Big Chair

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Songs From The Big Chair

Tears For Fears

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If The Hurting was mental anguish, Songs from the Big Chair marks the progression towards emotional healing, a particularly bold sort of catharsis culled from Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith's shared attraction to primal scream therapy. The album also heralded a dramatic maturation in the band's music, away from the synth-pop brand with which it was (unjustly) seared following the debut, and towards a complex, enveloping pop sophistication. The songwriting of Orzabal, Smith, and keyboardist Ian Stanley took a huge leap forward, drawing on reserves of palpable emotion and lovely, protracted melodies that draw just as much on soul and R&B music as they do on immediate pop hooks. The album could almost be called pseudo-conceptual, as each song holds its place and each is integral to the overall tapestry, a single-minded resolve that is easy to overlook when an album is as commercially successful as Songs from the Big Chair. And commercially successful it was, containing no less than three huge commercial radio hits, including the dramatic and insistent march, "Shout" and the shimmering, cascading "Head Over Heels," which, tellingly, is actually part of a song suite on the album. Orzabal and Smith's penchant for theorizing with steely-eyed austerity was mistaken for harsh bombasticism in some quarters, but separated from its era, the album only seems earnestly passionate and immediate, and each song has the same driven intent and the same glistening remoteness. It is not only a commercial triumph, it is an artistic tour de force. And in the loping, percolating "Everybody Wants to Rule the World," Tears for Fears perfectly captured the zeitgeist of the mid-'80s while impossibly managing to also create a dreamy, timeless pop classic. Songs from the Big Chair is one of the finest statements of the decade. ~ Stanton Swihart

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Songs From The Big Chair

Tears For Fears

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1
Shout 00:06:33

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1985 Mercury Records Limited

2
The Working Hour 00:06:31

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Immanuel Elias, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1985 Mercury Records Limited

3
Everybody Wants To Rule The World 00:04:11

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Christopher Merrick Hughes, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1985 Mercury Records Limited

4
Mothers Talk 00:05:07

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - BOB CLEARMOUNTAIN, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1984 Mercury Records Limited

5
I Believe 00:04:56

Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Will Gregory, Saxophone, AssociatedPerformer - Christopher Merrick Hughes, Producer - Tears For Fears, MainArtist - Manny Elias, Drums, AssociatedPerformer

℗ 1985 Mercury Records Limited

6
Broken 00:02:39

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1985 Mercury Records Limited

7
Head Over Heels / Broken 00:05:01

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1985 Mercury Records Limited

8
Listen 00:06:55

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Bascombe, Engineer, StudioPersonnel - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 1984 Mercury Records Limited

9
Shout (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:06:35

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

10
The Working Hour (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:06:34

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Immanuel Elias, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

11
Everybody Wants To Rule The World (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:04:13

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Christopher Merrick Hughes, ComposerLyricist - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

12
Mothers Talk (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:05:08

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - BOB CLEARMOUNTAIN, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

13
I Believe (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:04:55

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Hughes, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Christopher Merrick Hughes, Producer - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

14
Broken (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:02:38

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

15
Head Over Heels (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:04:55

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer - Chris Hughes, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Christopher Merrick Hughes, Producer - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

16
Listen (2014 Steven Wilson Mix) 00:06:57

Neil Taylor, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Curt Smith, Bass Guitar, Background Vocalist, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Stanley, Keyboards, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Chris Hughes, Producer, Drums, AssociatedPerformer - ROLAND ORZABAL, Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Steven Wilson, Re-Mixer, StudioPersonnel - Tears For Fears, MainArtist

℗ 2014 Mercury Records Limited

Album Description

If The Hurting was mental anguish, Songs from the Big Chair marks the progression towards emotional healing, a particularly bold sort of catharsis culled from Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith's shared attraction to primal scream therapy. The album also heralded a dramatic maturation in the band's music, away from the synth-pop brand with which it was (unjustly) seared following the debut, and towards a complex, enveloping pop sophistication. The songwriting of Orzabal, Smith, and keyboardist Ian Stanley took a huge leap forward, drawing on reserves of palpable emotion and lovely, protracted melodies that draw just as much on soul and R&B music as they do on immediate pop hooks. The album could almost be called pseudo-conceptual, as each song holds its place and each is integral to the overall tapestry, a single-minded resolve that is easy to overlook when an album is as commercially successful as Songs from the Big Chair. And commercially successful it was, containing no less than three huge commercial radio hits, including the dramatic and insistent march, "Shout" and the shimmering, cascading "Head Over Heels," which, tellingly, is actually part of a song suite on the album. Orzabal and Smith's penchant for theorizing with steely-eyed austerity was mistaken for harsh bombasticism in some quarters, but separated from its era, the album only seems earnestly passionate and immediate, and each song has the same driven intent and the same glistening remoteness. It is not only a commercial triumph, it is an artistic tour de force. And in the loping, percolating "Everybody Wants to Rule the World," Tears for Fears perfectly captured the zeitgeist of the mid-'80s while impossibly managing to also create a dreamy, timeless pop classic. Songs from the Big Chair is one of the finest statements of the decade. ~ Stanton Swihart

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