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85 of 93 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's been a long time coming, but worth the wait.
This is pop music as it was meant to be. If you are tired of over produced and generic pop music like American Idol "stars" or the every growing and all sound the same releases from hip hop artists and young female singers, then check this out.

Tears for Fears first came on the scene in the early 1980's with "The Hurting". They followed that up with the...
Published on September 14, 2004 by Michael Erisman

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great album after a few listens (well not anymore!)
It's rare that I look forward to anything new that comes out, but this is one release I was anxious to buy. One of TFF's strong points is their consistency and quality music. Like a lot of great albums though, you have to listen to it a few times before you "get it". On first listen it was just ok, with a couple of catchy tunes but average. The next day I listened to it...
Published on September 19, 2004 by Joey Saylor


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85 of 93 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's been a long time coming, but worth the wait., September 14, 2004
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
This is pop music as it was meant to be. If you are tired of over produced and generic pop music like American Idol "stars" or the every growing and all sound the same releases from hip hop artists and young female singers, then check this out.

Tears for Fears first came on the scene in the early 1980's with "The Hurting". They followed that up with the multi-platinum selling "Songs From the Big Chair". After a long gap, they released "Seeds of Love" in 1989 before splitting up. Roland stayed with the name for a while, but it wasn't the same. Now, some 15 years after "Seeds of Love" they are back together again. The addition of Curt gives the sound the balance missing from Roland's solo work.

The CD starts out with a classic ballad in "Everybody Loves a Happy Ending" and then grooves into the best song on the CD, the (original) first single "Closest Thing to Heaven". The sound is again something in between modern pop and the Beatles. It is reminiscent of "Sowing the Seeds of Love", the last big hit, with horns and a chorus that will have you singing along. With the new label, the first single release, "Call Me Mellow" is more organic than their early 80's work, and is catchy enough to garner interest. All the tracks are great, but my other favorite is the closing track, a smooth R&B number called "Last Days on Earth".

They always had lyrics a mile deep, and flew in the face of whatever pop genre was in at the moment. This release is yet another chapter in a string of great music. This one may not get the exposure some of their other music did, which is too bad, as it is some of the best new music out there. Check it out!
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51 of 55 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Completely Baffled, September 14, 2004
By 
Michael D. Abernethy (Chapel Hill, NC United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
The self-professed, life-long Tears For Fears fan has had doubts these last few months. He has bitten his nails. He has paced the floor. He has become squeamish at the mere mention of "radio single" and "TFF" in the same sentence.

I went into "Everybody Loves A Happy Ending" expecting the worst. Over and over again, I told myself - and forced myself to believe - that there was no way in Hell that Roland and Curt were going to recapture the spirit of what they once had. "Come on, Mike, these are 40-somethings with wives and kids and gray hairs. This is not, cannot be, their time."

So today finally came, and I rushed with bated breath to jam my copy into my car's CD player. I winced at the cymbal roll and shimmering-keyboard fuzz that kicks off the title track. I gritted my teeth. And suddenly something happened...

I loved every single note that was coming from my speakers.

This album is as fresh and vital as anything TFF have ever recorded. It's full of pop hooks ("Call Me Mellow," "Closest Thing to Heaven"), artful genre experiments ("Who Killed Tangerine?," "Secret World"), and lots of what many have called "magic."

There's a sweetness that has crept back into Roland's work here - most notably on "Size of Sorrow" and "Secret World" - but there's also a much more playfully adventurous spirit at work. "Call Me Mellow" and the title track burst with everything good about pop music in the last 40 years. The guys were even willing to throw in some R&B riffs - via David Bowie - on the amazing closer, "Last Days on Earth."

"Everybody Loves A Happy Ending" is my pick for Album of the Year. It's a multi-textural, exuberant pop album in the finest sense of the words.

So, I'm eating my words. And all that worry was for nothing. They've done it again, and time will probably prove that they've done it better than ever. I can't wait to begin peeling back the layers of this magical pop blessing.

A flabberghasted, whole-hearted 5 stars.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best ever by TFF, September 16, 2004
By 
Carl Mack (Palm Springs, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
First off may I say that TFF are like XTC. They borrow from the Beatles but the sound they create is all thier own. It is very distinct and yet very different from even XTC's take on the Beatles. They are using instrumentation that fits in the context of thier songs (like XTC) to create magical music that is Beatle like in nature but would never be mistaken for an out and out Beatle rip off.

Secondly this is thier strongest most cohesive set ever. Honestly there is not a weak song among the bunch, not one! In this day and age of c.d's with a few good songs and the rest filler what a delightful surprise to have a c.d. you can listen to from start to finish without having to skip any tracks.

There is plenty of variety here too. The title cut is like a musical tour de force. It starts with a dreamy sequence then flows into power pop in a kind of ELO style. Then there is a softly sung portion that is kind of folky before the grand climax.

"Closest Thing to Heaven" is a great song, kind of a mellower Sowing the Seeds but with a distinct style all its own. Very atmospheric and moving.

""Call Me Mellow" is the song Andy Partridge had wished he wrote. It is kind of Boo Radleys meets the La's meets XTC. Pure power pop for the new millienium.

"Size of Sorrow" and "Who You Are" are great moving ballads that will hook you on repeated listens.

"Who killed Tangerine" does evoke the fab 4 quite. It is brilliant with it's "Hey Jude" meets "Shout" chorus.

"The Quiet Ones" is a nice rocker that sounds like it would have fit in on Rolands solo c.d.

"The Devil" is a haunting ballad that will send shivers down your spine.

"Secret World" is an absolute brilliant piece of work. Perfect soft pop with a melody that never quits.

"Killing With Kindness" is classic TFF. Slower song with a killer chorus.

"Ladybird" is classic pastoral pop.

"Last Days On Earth" is an R & B romp smooth as silk.

All these songs possess beatiful melodies and the playing is flawless yet it is not overdone like many TFF efforts of the past. TFF are comfortable in thier own skin and if this is the ending then so be it, you couldn't ask for a grander finale.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific music that unfortunately may not be heard, April 5, 2005
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
While listening to this album for the final time prior to writing this review (unlike some who don't seem to have listened to it at all...just tossing in words to increase their reviewer rating which to me is obscene), I decided that yes, the Beatles could again be found in Curt and Roland's work, but this time it was the "McCartney Beatles". Not McCartney with Wings, or McCartney solo, but McCartney with the Beatles. The innovative melodies were there, they were just a tad softer - more Paul, less John, for whom I believe was their major inspiration for Sowing the Seeds of Love. So here I come, with what I think is this terrific insight, ready to write a brilliant review, but before I start tapping on my keyboard I stop to take a moment and read the Tears for Fears website. I read the "History" section in particular, to learn a little more about their split, what they did when they stopped making music together and when Orzabal stopped after Raoul and the Kings of Spain, etc. Then I get to the end of the section, and here's what it says:

"Memorable melodies fill the songs of Everybody Loves A Happy Ending, and those who heard the Beatles in Roland and Curt's last work together may again hear them here. It's inescapable. `When we did `Sowing The Seeds Of Love' we were doing Lennon,' says Roland. `And I would say the main influence for this album was McCartney.'"

Well that's just great, I thought. Someone already thought of it - THEY did! So much for my insight.

Melodies are the focus here, not strong music or Roland's shattering vocals, and the result is a winner. The problem is, where does Tears for Fears fit into today's music? Several songs, such as Closest Thing To Heaven, Call Me Mellow, Who Killed Tangerine?, and Killing With Kindness could have been follow-ups to Head Over Heels on Songs from the Big Chair. By that I mean that I think they would have been received favorably back then, any of them charting in the top five as a fourth release. Curt and Roland were young, they had come bursting onto the music scene (even though technically it was their second album), and another mellow song (which leaves out Who Killed Tangerine? I suppose), would have balanced the song selection nicely. However, where do those songs fit today? It's rare that musicians find success - especially today - once their skin loses a youthful glow, and gray hair crowns their head. That's the case with Curt and Roland, and without a steady release of memorable music since Sowing the Seeds of Love, it's virtually impossible to find a place for them today.

Certainly, they are making excellent music. Aside from the songs mentioned above, the title track - while the title of the song itself is perhaps a bit "cheesy" - is terrific. That was the first song I heard, as it's the first song on the album, and I thought to myself: there's the influence of the Beatles again.

With radio waves being warped by hip hop and rap, with the rare group or solo artist NOT hopping or rapping breaking into the charts, it's going to be difficult for an older group to find their way into a youth culture that's not only obsessed with a completely different sound than Tears for Fears produce, but also a culture that is obsessed with whatever the latest fad is. Tears for Fears, while reinvigorating and reestablishing themselves as masters at making music, doesn't fall into the categories that today's youth cling to. Sadly, this CD is no longer on Billboards Top 200. It should be. I just hope that all of this doesn't stop them from making music. I want more.

In addition, to anyone who thinks they're cashing in on earlier success should research the group before they say such things. Artists, whether they be writers or musicians, always have the passion to continue in their soul. It never leaves them. Orzabal released a solo album in 2001 under his own name. Obviously he still wanted to make music. Smith was performing in New York, also producing other artists. Neither of them ever left the business, and neither of them were hard up for cash. They made this CD because the passion was in their soul.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who doesn't like it?, December 7, 2004
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
Curt Smith and Roland Orzabal made their last album together in 1989, after that Roland continued by himself. Now eventually the're back reformed as one of my favorite bands of the 80's. I'm sure you'll remember songs like "Shout" however Tears for Fears are much more then that and the sound here has changed alot since. Gone are the synths, but the intellegent lyrics and catchy sound is still here. I think that Smith added alot of pop/rock when he came back. Roland went deeper and deeper in the music on their last album together "Seeds of Love" where he wrote most of the songs and made them less pop then before. I however likes abit of them both. What would they be without one of them?. This album proves that they can still make good songs together 15 years later.

Many songs here are abit Beatle's inspired with catchy melodies, Guitars and Piano's in the backround. "Everybody Loves a Happy Ending" is the best example of that. It's probably the best song together with the romantic "Closest thing to Heaven" and "Call Me Mellow" a happy uptempo song. Many other songs remind me more of Beatles then Tears For Fears like "Secret World" but thats another highlight here, "Who Killed Tangerine?" is strong with drums in the back, another Beatle's inspired one. The slow "Who You are" that is one of my favorites here with a falsetto aswell. "Size Of Sorrow" is very romantic and probably the slowest song here, Curt sings the falsetto just like in good old 1985. "Quit One's" is rocky and reminds me of U2 on the sound abit, Roland sings it and Curt backs it up wich they're so good at. "Devil" uses a mellow piano with slow lyrics. "Killing the Kindness" also got this beatle's sound, It a strong and ellegant number musically. "Ladybird" is a great ballad with lyrics that are very good aswell as the sound. "Last Days on Earth" is very unique, it's funky and soulish and very charming. Doesn't sound like TFF but it surely get's your attention and proves that the boys can make any kind of songs.

Overall. This is a brilliant album. I'm so glad that the're back and I think this new sound is both interesting and a step forward musically. Good sound, Lyrics and melodies. Curt and Roland together again makes a good impact on the listener. It's a album that grooves on you aswell. Listen to it a few times and the sound will be hookes on you. No bad song on the entire album, that's why I had to give 5 stars. Recommended for sure.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Brilliant, September 14, 2004
By 
MUN "TFF FAN" (Mountain View, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
The TFF fans had to wait 14 years since the duo Curt Smith And Roland Ozrabal split after the Seeds of Love album. Now they are together again and the result is "Everbody Loves A Happy Ending". A brilliant album and in my opinion their best yet.

The Duo had moved from their synth heavy sound to a more mature approach in the Seeds Of Love album. Seeds of Love was heavily influenced by Beatles and the likes of Pink Floyd but with a distinct TFF touch. In "Everybody Loves A Happy Ending" They have perfected their art of making great music. It is the album that should have followed The Seeds of Love.

When Curt left TFF something was lost from the TFF sound and now it is found again in this album. Combine Rolands powerful voice and songwriting abilities with the sophisticated and smooth touch provided by Curt and you have the TFF sound. It is sophisticated, catchy and hooky. Not only is the music brilliant but the verses makes you think. Every song has a theme and a message. The duo has also abandoned the overproduced sounds of today's music where you hardly hear any music and where the artist has to rely on the manipulation of bits and bytes rather than their own talent. In this TFF album you can actually hear guitars, drums and pianos. And of course there is Roland's unmistikable voice proving that he can still belt out songs.

This is a landmark album for TFF and for their Fans.

I reccommend this album to all that music lovers who appreciate good music. I have been listening to songs off this album every day and they sound as fresh and aexciting as they did six months ago when I was able to get a hold of a demo verision of the album based on the their performance at KFOG (San Francisco).

Five Stars All the Way.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 years later and better than ever, September 28, 2004
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
Finally, Orzabal & Smith have reunited to make the album Sowing The Seeds of Love should have been. Fans of Abbey Road/White Album-era Beatles now have some new music they can appreciate like nothing else out there. Just the opening notes of the first cut catches your ear like few records do anymore, and then, in a few seconds you hear an alarm clock sound, and Orzabal sings, "Wake up!" (the same musical notes as "Woke up" from "A Day In The Life", except backwards). This is a rare surprise of an album, an album that grabs you from the first time you hear it and it's catchiness continues to grow on you with repeated listens. Hard to pick favorite tracks because the entire work is so consistently satisfying as a whole but definitely the title cut, along with "Who Killed Tangerine", "Call Me Mellow" (the chorus will stay in your head quite a while), "Who You Are", "Devil", "Quiet Ones", and "Ladybird". This is a thinking man's melodic music that should be all over the radio.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely incredible, October 13, 2004
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
I fail to understand how anyone could have panned this release. I hope Roland and Curt read these reviews because they should know what a majority of their fans think - that this is one of the best releases of the last 10 years in all of the music industry. I don't know how the grammy nominating process works, but I hope that somehow this at least gets nominated for a grammy. Being a musician, I listen for certain qualities in the music I listen to... excellent musicianship and singing, catchy and memorable songwriting, orchestration (not just with an orchestra, but the structure and instrumentation of the piece as well), and production. The musicianship is top notch all the way from the bass line in the intro to Everybody Loves a Happy Ending to the Bowie-inflected vocals of Last Days On Earth. NOBODY in the right mind could ever say that these melodies aren't incredibly memorable. The songs that are written like suites with great orchestral parts and layers of production just simply sound great! It is not overdone, but at the same time it's not a bare-bones recording either. They're not trying to be something they're not!! GREAT STUFF!!! The choices of instrumentation both fit and make the mood of the songs and that's hard to do and the production quality is so good that we clearly hear all of the parts quite well. I don't want to be too long winded here, but this album has me more excited about music than any other album since Seeds of Love. Side note - TFF are not my favorite band... maybe in the top 20, but this album is just simply special!! One last comment regarding the Beatle "quotes." There is NOTHING WRONG with quotes... imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and jazz musicians do it all the time in their solos... quoting one jazz chart in the solo section of another chart. The comarison is VALID and there's nothing wrong with it. It's acknowledging the greatness of the melody being quoted. I hope they continue to write more.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great album from ROLAND and CURT!, September 15, 2004
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
I just had to write a review to counter the previous 1-star review by someone in my state (I'm so ashamed!) who claims that she's been a fan from the beginning. She's such a fan she doesn't realize his name is ROLAND and not RONALD. Perhaps she's spent too much time at McDonald's and not enough time with this album. It's brilliant and deserves repeated listens - it just gets better and better...
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A New Fan, September 15, 2004
This review is from: Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (Audio CD)
OK, I'll be honest, I have hated Tears For Fears ever since those whiney guys burst onto the scene with their mullets and pretentious, introverted lyrics. Were they talented? Sure, but to me it was like they were trying WAY too hard. After the '90's when the TFF name fell into complete obscurity, there was no way I would miss them. To me, they were nothing more than a footnote in the 80's hit parade, like Simple Minds or A Flock Of Seagulls. A few years ago, I heard they were getting back together. I remember thinking how sad it was to hear of another used-to-be-famous band trying to cash in and try to make people remember them.

Well, today, I am eating all of my words and feeling very sorry for having such ill feelings towards TFF. A friend of mine purchased the new CD yesterday and was listening to it while we were driving around town. I couldn't believe it! This was some of the most absolute greatest music I have heard in years. The production is incredible, the melodies are unbelievable and the lyrics are some pretty mean poetry. Yeah, I have read a lot of reviews saying how Beatlesque it is. This is true, but yet there is something so fresh about it that it only be done by a band like TFF, whose grasp has always been further than its reach. The were always, to me anyway, overly ambitious. But finally, they have struck the right chords and perfected their sound. This is their best work, without a doubt and, quite possibly, the best work of the year. It's original, yet familiar and optimistic, yet pessimistically reflective. There's beautiful amazing, magical pop ("Secret World," "Closest Thing To Heaven," "Call Me Mellow," ), powerful, but not cheesy, ballads ("Ladybird," "Size Of Sorrow," "Last Days On Earth") and genuine alternative rockers ("Killing with Kindness," "Quiet Ones," "Who Killed Tangerine?"). The title track is like the history of good, important music of the past 40 years, it's all over the map, but it stays here on Earth and doesn't go too far. Perhaps my favorite track, "The Devil," isn't the most exciting song, but it has, in my opinion the greatest lyrics on the album and it is an extremely haunting track.

Take it from me, folks. You NEED to buy this album. As stated before, I hated these guys for the longest time, and now I've been listening to this album non-stop since I purchased the CD at like 11pm last night.
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Everybody Loves a Happy Ending
Everybody Loves a Happy Ending by Tears For Fears (Audio CD - 2004)
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