Happy 25th Birthday The Hurting.

The debut album by Waist High favorite Tears for Fears, The Hurting was the group's first #1 on the UK Album Chart.

For this LP (and the next), keyboard player and composer Ian Stanley and drummer Manny Elias were considered full members of the band, though Curt Smith and Roland Orzabal were still essentially the frontmen and public faces.

The Hurting, produced by Chris Hughes and Ross Cullum, showcased synthesizer-based songs with lyrics reflecting Orzabal's bitter childhood and upbringing. The Hurting can be considered Tears for Fears' only true concept album, as references to emotional distress and primal therapy are found in nearly every song.

The album strongly bears the behind the scenes influence of Daniel Lichtblau, commonly thought of as the "fifth" TFF member, owing to his premature departure from the group just as they were on the cusp of real fame. Lichtblau, a pianist, was a big proponent of the "double keyboard" effect that characterizes their early sound and is prevalent on this album.

The album itself was a big success and had a lengthy chart run (65 weeks) in the UK, also reaching the Top 20 in several countries and yielding the singles "Mad World," "Change," and a re-recorded version of "Pale Shelter," (all of which were top 5 in the UK).

"Mad World" was also Tears for Fears' first international hit, reaching the Top 40 in several countries.

"Mad World" would achieve a second round of success after it was recorded by Michael Andrews and Gary Jules for the film Donnie Darko in 2001.

Originally released in 2002 on the film's soundtrack, Donnie Darko's increasing cult following spawned by the movie's DVD release finally prompted Jules and Andrews to issue the song as a proper single. The release was a runaway success in late 2003, becoming the #1 single over the Christmas holiday in the UK, a feat the original version never managed to accomplish.

Photo: The Waist High Collection
Material: wikipedia.org