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5.0 out of 5 stars Different but excellent
It's the Tears for fears's album that I like the most. Maybe because it was not as popular as the other ones and I never get tired since it is not over played.
"Good night song" is my favorite but every other songs have something special in it. Check out "Brian Wilson song" starting at 1:50 minutes how the music is beautiful.
By the way,...
Published on Feb. 2 2004 by Guylaine Le Ber

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars All and all,...it cannot compare to the earlier TFF
I think that Roland Orzabal is an amazing singer/songwriter but he seems to have lost his focus with this album. The songs are kind of weird in my opinion ("Dog's a best friend's dog"?)and the sound is lacking from the days of classic TFF in the 80's. "Cold", and "Fish out of water" are great songs and the album DOES grow on you after a while...
Published on March 30 2002 by Azurestrangelove


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4.0 out of 5 stars Tears for Fears' most underrated release is quite good!, July 1 2004
By 
guillermoj (Washington, DC United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
Tears for Fears became a favorite of mine right from the start as they were much more than a cut above many of their synthesizer-powered contemporaries during the mid 1980s. Their angst-driven "The Hurting" was a classic and cohesive debut that signaled that these guys had a lot to say. "Songs from the Big Chair" was a more was a hit-filled production that brought soul into the equation and brought them massive commercial success all over the world. The greatest thing about that release is that it succeeded without relying on any particular pop formula. Any release that includes the anthemic "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" and the jazzy "I Believe," just to name a couple, shows that these guys were going to be much more than a passing trend. Although it took many aborted tries, the duo's third release "The Seeds of Love" was another smash and introduced the world to Oleta Adams and highlighted the duo's softer side. After again struggling to produce their fourth album, Curt Smith wound up leaving the group. Roland Orzabal retained the rights to the duo's name and released "Elemental" as a Tears for Fears product.
Many critics and some fans did not like "Elemental" (although thankfully not most Amazoners), but although it sold well, many found it to be less compelling their any of their first three releases. I only agree to a degree, as "Elemental" may not a 5-star release (the rating that I give to Tear for Fear's first three releases), it easily earns 4 stars on the strength of the first 4 songs (the powerful and addictive "Elemental," the melodic and catchy "Cold," "Break It Down Again" which may be THE song that captures the essence of their first three releases, and the jazzy "Mr. Pessimist"). I love "Gas Giants" and all the other songs, with the possible exception of "Power."
In a nutshell, if you are a fan of Tears for Fears, your collection should not overlook this release. If you are not a hardcore fan, you might be better off going for one of their greatest hits compilations as they flow quite well. So 4 starts it is and be on the lookout for "Everybody Loves a Happy Ending," as it represents Curt's return to the band, but as is always the case with this group something gets in their way of getting their music out there. It appears that the issue is now label-related as Arista (the duo's new US label) changed regimes before the CD was scheduled to come out in mid 2004 and it seems like everything in the pipeline is being questioned by the new regime. Not even the UK version has a release date, but until them enjoy all off Tear for Fears' music, including the underrated "Elemental."
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4.0 out of 5 stars Missing the balance of Curt Smith, but still outstanding, March 27 2004
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
Tears for Fears were one of the rare pop groups whose music survived the 80's image and still sounds great today. After the classic "Seeds of Love", the duo broke up. Roland Orzabel recorded this follow up without Curt Smith. While the music is missing some of the vocal balance of their previous work, this CD contains one of their best songs: "Break It Down Again". Part of the song lyrics below show the introspection the band is famous for:
"It's in the way you're always hiding from the light, See for yourself you have been sitting on a time bomb, No revolution maybe someone somewhere else, Could show you something new about you and your inner song - And all the love and all the love in the world, Won't stop the rain from falling, Waste seeping underground - I want to break it down....Break it down again"
The rest of the CD has some great moments as well, and typical of the band, the lyrics and songwriting is well above the meaningless chatter of most pop songs.
The title track "Elemental" , and the driving "Dog's a Best Friends Dog" are on par with their previous work, while the smooth and moody "Gas Giants" sounds like an updated "Working Hour" intro. Of particular note is "Fish Out of Water" an obvious slam on his departed band mate.
While the music always takes me back to Virginia, and my grad school days, it still sounds up to date as well. A great addition to your collection.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Different but excellent, Feb. 2 2004
By 
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
It's the Tears for fears's album that I like the most. Maybe because it was not as popular as the other ones and I never get tired since it is not over played.
"Good night song" is my favorite but every other songs have something special in it. Check out "Brian Wilson song" starting at 1:50 minutes how the music is beautiful.
By the way, Tears for fears came back together and just finished a new album that should be out in April 2004. Curtis said, our best album so far. Can't wait to see that.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Ultimate !!!, Dec 9 2003
By A Customer
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
This is by far the best Tears For Fears album ever made, it's darker and edgier than their previous (jamming)fluff of the 80's. "Elemental" is musically, lyrically, meaningfully, sonically superior to almost anything the bowel of the 90's polluted us with. It's a shame most people don't like to be challenged a little musically. Boring, woe is me, all sound the same grunge knocked this brilliant gem off the airwaves along with (I.Q. of 70 degrees on a warm day) rap. This CD jams! every song! what more could you possibly want?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Roland Goes It Alone, Aug. 7 2003
By 
Russell Diederich (Littleton, CO United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
Whatever happened after the amazing "Seeds of Love" release, it looked to be the end of Tears for Fears. Curt Smith left Roland Orzabal to go it alone with the TFF name. Orzabal enlisted the help of Alan Griffiths, and although took a step backward, laid down the groundwork for a great collaboration that would reshape TFF into the last decade of the century.
As compared to "Seeds of Love" I'd say that this album is not as good, but it sure is close. With the title track Orzabal let us know that the band is still the same sans Smith, with just a bit of a twist. The song has more of an edge to it than previous TFF stuff, a little heavier sound, but still the same great Orzabal voice. After reaching out a little, Orzabal comes back into a signature sound with "Cold". "Break It Down Again" is a little funky with a Orzabal's staccato lyrics helping to drive the rhythm. The album goes back to being heavy with "Dog's a Best Friend's Dog". The album ends with "Goodnight Song", a great song with Orzabal's voice ringing, and almost bluesy electric guitar. Very recognizable format in today's music scene, a song way before its time.
Orzabal is definitely trying out his new wings of freedom. "Elemental" is definitely a transition album. You can hear the change in TFF from "Seeds of Love" to "Raoul, and the Kings of Spain" and on to "Tomcats Screaming Outside". Orzabal picked a good title for this album, as it is the building stone for the second half of his career. It's a good start, and a must own for any Orzabal or TFF fan.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Roland Goes It Alone, Aug. 7 2003
By 
Russell Diederich (Littleton, CO United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
Whatever happened after the amazing "Seeds of Love" release, it looked to be the end of Tears for Fears. Curt Smith left Roland Orzabal to go it alone with the TFF name. Orzabal enlisted the help of Alan Griffiths, and although took a step backward, laid down the groundwork for a great collaboration that would reshape TFF into the last decade of the century.
As compared to "Seeds of Love" I'd say that this album is not as good, but it sure is close. With the title track Orzabal let us know that the band is still the same sans Smith, with just a bit of a twist. The song has more of an edge to it than previous TFF stuff, a little heavier sound, but still the same great Orzabal voice. After reaching out a little, Orzabal comes back into a signature sound with "Cold". "Break It Down Again" is a little funky with a Orzabal's staccato lyrics helping to drive the rhythm. The album goes back to being heavy with "Dog's a Best Friend's Dog". The album ends with "Goodnight Song", a great song with Orzabal's voice ringing, and almost bluesy electric guitar. Very recognizable format in today's music scene, a song way before its time.
Orzabal is definitely trying out his new wings of freedom. "Elemental" is definitely a transition album. You can hear the change in TFF from "Seeds of Love" to "Raoul, and the Kings of Spain" and on to "Tomcats Screaming Outside". Orzabal picked a good title for this album, as it is the building stone for the second half of his career. It's a good start, and a must own for any Orzabal or TFF fan.
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5.0 out of 5 stars timeless rock, July 15 2003
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
10 years on...this thing still has real staying power. Great vocals, diverse sounds and a nice bridge between spiritual highs and relationship angst in the lyrics.
One of the few acts from the eighties that keeps on getting better.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dark, Playful, and Creative, April 25 2003
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
After first hearing "Songs from the Big Chair" I absolutely fell in love with Tears for Fears, and the voice of Roland Orzabal. On this effort, Orzabal has essentially gone solo (with the departure of Smith), while still retaining the TFF name, and he released one of the most underrated albums of the 90's. For me, this is definitely a "mood" album, and I find when I'm down this disc always seems to find its way into my CD player... that's not to say that this is a depressing album, but that for whatever reason "Elemental" always seems to pick me up a bit.
Thematically several of the songs are darker, while still keeping an upbeat tempo. Even the most radio friendly single "Break it down again" is not lighthearted pop fluff. As Roland sings, "...they make no mention of the beauty of decay", he allows the lyrics to set the mood rather than the instrumentation. Speaking of the instrumentation, he does an excellent job of layering different textures and sounds, and it really creates a complex and beautiful atmosphere onto which he lends his trademark vocals.
In addition to "Break it down again" which most people have heard on the radio, there are several songs worthy of mention. The title track "Elemental" and "Cold" really display the honesty of Roland's songwriting (read the lyrics... they're amazing). The title of "Power" says it all, and when Roland slows it down a bit on his Beach Boys tribute "Brian Wilson Said" and the closing gem "Goodnight Song" he shows that his voice is a formidable instrument. "Mr. Pessimist" is a great song that tends to run a bit long, as with the instrumental "Gas Giants", but overall the quality of the songwriting is high, and there's great continuity throughout the album.
Although Smith is missed on this album, Roland shows that he is prepared to work solo, and that he is more than capable of carrying an album by himself from start to finish. Although it is something of a departure from "Seeds of Love" (and people expecting Seeds II may be disappointed), this is a great Roland Orzabal album, and if they give it a chance the Tears for Fears faithful will not be disappointed.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Better than I remembered, May 17 2002
By 
kireviewer (Sunnyvale, Ca United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
Tears For Fears' third album, Sowing The Seeds was the best album of 1989. This is Tears For Fears fourth album (released 4 years later). When I first played this, I was disappointed because it wasn't Sowing the Seeds part II. So, I didn't play it for a long time. I finally pulled it our after years and played it again and was very surprised.
This is really a solo album from Roland Orzabal. Although Tears For Fears acted like a rock group, it was really a duet of Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith. Smith was like Garfunkel in Simon and Garfunkel, in that Orzabal did most of the work, and Smith just added the vocals. In Sewing the Seeds, the group actually expanded to a trio with the addition of Oleta Adams. But, Smith and Orzabal had the infamous creative differences and Orzabal continued on his own for this album.
The songs on this album are very rich and complex. The music is lush and overlapping. But it all has a clear, bright sound. The song writing is very good.
It is hard to write what is so good about, so I will mention the minor downsides that prevent this from getting five stars. There isn't the great variety in styles as in Sowing the Seeds. After a while one song just blends into the next. Some of the songs in the middle are too popish, and the repeated choruses tend to get annoying after a number of listenings. While Roland Orzabal has a good and unique voice, it is tough for him to carry a whole album by himself. At times he sounds like he is singing with his mouth full. There used to be great interplay between Smith and Orzabal on the earlier records.
While this is a departure for Tears For Fears, it is still very nice. Fans of pop music, such as newer Sting material, we really appreciate this and probably prefer it over the older albums.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pop masterpiece. Stunning music!, May 13 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Elemental (Audio CD)
This has got to be one of the most underrated pop releases ever. Every song is well crafted and very musical. The band is tight and the songs are very lush. This and The Church 'After Everything Now This' can't seem to leave my CD player!
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Elemental
Elemental by Tears for Fears (Audio CD - 1996)
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