Watch the video here
√ First new album in 17 years, ‘The Tipping Point,’ arriving Feb. 25 via Concord Records
√ ‘The Tipping Point World Tour’ begins in May
On Friday, iconic British duo Tears For Fears released “No Small Thing,” the second single off their anticipated first studio album in 17 years, “The Tipping Point” (arriving Feb. 25, 2022, via Concord Records). Written by both band members, Roland Orzabal and Curt Smith, the guitar strums pull listeners in with their folk-like tone, but slowly morph into controlled chaos, as the singers push the song’s sonics as far as they can go.
Orzabal said, “In early 2020, Curt and I sat down together with just a couple of acoustic guitars. The first time in decades. We needed a meeting of minds, a coming together psychically. We were literally going back to the drawing board looking for some depth, heart and soul with which to complete our album. Curt came up with this simple folk/country riff, a little bit Dylan, a little bit Johnny Cash, and then we were off. It was the complete opposite of what we had been trying to do for many years – searching for the elusive, modern hit single. We felt suddenly unencumbered, free if you like, no longer worrying about the market, about success, but drawing on influences from our childhoods. It was at this point that the whole album started opening up. ‘No Small Thing’ was the key – the thing that turned a red light green.”
Smith added, “ ‘No Small Thing’ feels like it could have been a song from a ’70s or ’60s acoustic folk album with how the track starts. The fact that we felt confident enough to go from there to the end of the song to where it’s just absolute mayhem speaks to that sense of freedom, and that’s our comfort zone musically.”
Inspired by Koyaanisqatsi, the “No Small Thing” music video was made using solely found footage showing the conflict between individual freedoms and collective responsibility. Watch it here.
In November, the band announced “The Tipping Point World Tour,” with support from Garbage on the U.S. leg. Kicking off in Cincinnati on May 20, 2022, these dates will see the band performing in more than 20 cities across North America before capping off with their last show in Wantagh on June 25. These dates will mark the band’s first U.S. tour since 2017. For tickets and more information, visit the band's website here.
Tears For Fears – Orzabal (vocals, guitar, keyboards) and Smith (vocals, bass, keyboards) – formed in Bath, England, in 1981. With 30 million albums sold worldwide, performing to countless sold-out audiences, and winning various awards, the band represent an inimitable intersection of pop palatability, clever and cognizant lyricism, guitar bombast, and new wave innovation.
Their 1983 debut, “The Hurting,” yielded anthems such as “Mad World,” “Change” and “Pale Shelter,” reaching RIAA Gold status in the U.S. 1985’s “Songs from the Big Chair” became a watershed moment for the group and music at large. Boasting the signature BRIT Award-winning “Everybody Wants to Rule the World,” “Shout,” “Head over Heels,” “Mothers Talk” and “I Believe (A Soulful Re-Recording),” it went quintuple-Platinum and No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200. Slant dubbed it one of “The Best Albums of the 1980s.” It was featured in the book “1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die,” and Consequence of Sound awarded it a rare A+ rating in a 20-year retrospective.
1989’s “Seeds of Love” proved to be Orzabal and Smith’s last collaboration together until “Everybody Loves A Happy Ending” in 2004, which rekindled the creative fire between them. The band engaged in a three-year touring whirlwind across North America, Japan, South Korea, Manila and South America beginning in 2010.
2013 saw TFF return with their first recorded music in a decade: a cover of Arcade Fire’s “Ready to Start.” The band returned once more in 2017 with the “Rule The World” best-of collection, which once more catapulted the band back to the upper echelon of the U.K. album charts.
The duo’s DNA remains embedded within three generations of artists on both subtle and overt levels. Quietly casting a shadow over rock, hip-hop, electronic dance music, indie and beyond, Kanye West interpolated “Memories Fade” on “The Coldest Winter” from the seminal “808s & Heartbreak.” The Weeknd infused “Pale Shelter” into Starboy’s “Secrets.” David Guetta sampled “Change” for “Always.” Drake utilized “Ideas as Opiates” as the foundation for “Lust For Life.” Ally Brooke Hernandez, Adam Lambert and Gary Jules recorded popular covers of “Mad World.” Disturbed took on “Shout” – and that’s only to name a few. Lorde cut a haunting cover of “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” for the soundtrack of the blockbuster “The Hunger Games – Catching Fire,” which Tears For Fears gleefully would use as intro music live and thus bring everything full circle.
Meanwhile, classic songs figure prominently everywhere from “The Wire” and “Donnie Darko” to “Straight Outta Compton” and “Mr. Robot.”
Long before they became a cultural cornerstone, Tears For Fears simply consisted of two school friends growing up in Bath, Somerset U.K.
With “The Tipping Point” and comprehensive touring plans on the horizon, Orzabal and Smith remain as loud as ever – while yet another generation gets ready to “Shout” with them all over again.