On Second Thought
Tears for Fears – Songs from the Big Chair

By: Andrew Unterberger

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Posted 02/28/2006 - 03:40:12 AM by shredded77:
 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. -Allmusic The Hurting was aptly titled, an album almost entirely about pain, with song titles like “Mad World” and “Watch Me Bleed.” Tears for Fears, like John Lennon a decade earlier, were followers of Arthur Janov’s school of Primal Therapy, which encouraged patients to scream and cry to unearth and express repressed emotions. The title Songs From the Big Chair was a continuation of this catharsis... -Stylus
Posted 02/28/2006 - 09:33:48 AM by aBearAware:
 What's your point, shredded77? 1: The Hurting is an album about pain and mental anguish. 2: Songs From The Big Chair is more emotionally mature and cathartic. 3: Tears For Fears' work was heavily influenced by Arthur Janov's primal scream therapy. All of the above: Common knowledge. Obvious. DUH. Hundreds of people have written about the group and their first two albums using more-or-less similar wording. Any supposed implication of plagiarism of Allmusic's wording fails to come off as anything but an ad hominem attack on Stylus. Next!
Posted 02/28/2006 - 01:25:01 PM by raskolnikov:
 This band deserved to be forgotten. They were horrible then, and they suck now. My fondest memory of these chumps involved seeing Curt Smith at Brownie's in NYC in 1998 with his new band Mayfair....for a simple 2-guitar bass keyboards and drum setup they soundchecked for nearly 2 hours. While this self-indulgence was going on, the few patrons in the bar began drunkenly and sarcastically singing the chorus to "Everybody Wants to Rule the World". Smith stepped down from the stage to display his annoyance and to possibly try to intimidate the offending Americans, but got heckled immediately back to the safety of the band's interminable soundcheck. This episode says a lot about Curt Smith...oh and by the way he still had that stupid, stupid pseudomullet haircut. What's next for Stylus? A look back at Haircut 100? Or perhaps a new appreciation for Spandau Ballet? Lazy, lazy writing, lad...
Posted 02/28/2006 - 05:44:59 PM by sakic1:
 Thanks for the essay Andrew. I was into hardcore and punk in the 80's and turned my nose up at stuff like TFF, Haircut 100 and Spandau...what a bunch of pussies! Like raskolnikov it pissed me off when musicians had non-approved hairstyles, played their instruments well, and put care into the recording and performing of their music. I still listen to hardcore and punk, but I have come to appreciate 80's pop stuff too now that I can listen to music without any concern for whether it is cool or not. I appreciate TFF for different reasons than I appreciate Black Flag, but I get something out of both.
Posted 02/28/2006 - 08:10:04 PM by Garret:
 Even before I saw the author's name, I knew who wrote this. I love Steely Dan. I'm listening to them right now. All of the punks need to do the same. Overly sophisticated pop music has a lot to offer, damnit.
Posted 03/01/2006 - 07:20:31 PM by garlad1:
 I picked up the hurting and big chair from thrift a while back. Both warrant the occasional spin on the record player. Good for an 80s flash back session (add Cure, Boingo, Smiths, and mix). If this is a classic though, so is Born in the USA.
Posted 03/02/2006 - 03:52:10 PM by qwerty:
 This is all well and good but 'Seeds Of Love'is where it's at.