Day 19 of the #mayvinylchallenege asks to highlight a decade. After furious discussion with my wife, I went with the 80s to highlight that the decade – any decade, in face – is more than the memes and nostalgia kicks the media hypes. So much of the music was and remains incredibly rich and alive, regardless of genre. So many popular albums had a willingness to experiment with their production and arrangements, and one band in particular I’ve come to appreciate more and more for this over the years is Tears For Fears. Their third album The Seeds of Love didn’t quite reach the heights of their mammoth hit Songs From the Big Chair, but there’s so much depth and ambition to the album it’s become a go-to for me when I want to chill on the couch and just let my mind go.
Between writing the intro to this entry and now I got hit with some nasty allergies and migraines, and they haven’t really dissipated. So I’m going to make this one really short: yes, with the exception of sumptuous and gorgeous “Sowing the Seeds of Love” which feels positively George Martin-ish in its production and arrangement, there aren’t many hits here (I supposed you can make the case for “Advice For The Young At Heart” but I don’t), but with the lack of overt hits comes a greater focus on sound design and extended songs that – if you let them – really work. Opener “Woman In Chains” might be my favorite song on the album, the lush vocals from Oleta Adams adding so much to what Orzabal conceived in the songwriting process.
When your first three songs average at almost 7 minutes in length, you know you’re in for something that more than just a stab as commercial success. I applaud Tears For Fears for sticking to their guns on this album, even if I don’t like it as much as Songs From The Big Chair. Speaking of chairs, I’m going to sit back in mine and and wait for this migraine to dissipate.