JAM Magazine Concert Reviews

July 28, 2012
Pacific Amphitheater
Costa Mesa, CA USA
Review by L. Paul Mann
Photos by 

Tears For Fears

The English pop duo that is the heart of Tears For Fears, brought their 80's mega hit pop magic to the Pacific Amphitheater, which by their own account was their sixth appearance at the venue, since 1985. The band played a triumphant two hour set, to the large enthusiastic crowd on hand. The 8000 or so seat in the venue were sold out, and the large general admission lawn area in the back was opened to accommodate the overflow crowd. The band wasted no time launching into the 80's hits, opening with Everybody Wants To rule The World, from their 1985 album, "Songs from the Big Chair". The band released three albums in the 80's all of which were huge platinum selling hit records. "The Hurting" was released in 1982, with the mega hit song "Shout".

This was followed by their 1985 album, and a third album released in 1989, "The Seeds of Love". After their phenomenal success in the 80's, singer and bassist, Curt Smith left the band and settled in Los Angeles, becoming an American citizen. His partner, singer and guitar player, Roland Orzabal continued touring with the band into the 90's, but the magic harmonies between the two were missing and the band fell out of favor with most music fans. The pair reunited in 2000 and recorded a new album, "Everybody Love a Happy Ending', in 2004. This album spawned the bands first hit single since the 80's, "Closest Thing to Heaven". The band played a pleasing version of the hit as well as a few other songs from the last album. But it was the mega hits from the 80's albums that fans flocked to the outdoor venue to hear and they were not disappointed. As the group tour through 18 songs, including a double encore, the gleeful crowd sang, danced, and a shot bubble guns towards the giant stage, with hundreds of tiny bubble glistening in the massive lighting array. Two huge video screens kept the crowd on the back lawn engaged with a close up view of the band.

The gargantuan sound system fed thunderous sound to the very back of the venue. The band finished their two hour plus set, at about 1030PM, with their biggest hit, "Shout". A small choir of young girls was brought on stage to help sing the chorus, but they were mostly drown out by the audience, most of whom sang along to one of the 80's most beloved anthems. It may have been 27 years since Tears For fears first played the Pacific Amphitheater, but with crystal clear vocals, and a tight new group of talented musicians, Smith and Orzabal sounded as fresh and as optimistic as they did on their first tour.

Set List:
Everybody Wants To Rule The World
Secret World
3Seeds of Love
5Call Me Mellow
6Everybody Loves a Happy Ending
7Mad World
8Memories Fade
9Closest Thing to Heaven
10Falling Down
11Advice for the Young at Heart
12Floating Down the River
13Badman's Song
14Pale Shelter
15Break It Down Again
16.Head Over Heels
Woman in Chai

Southside Ballroom