Tears For Fears to issue Balearic-style remix of ‘Head Over Heels’

Following the release of the Rule The World greatest hits, Virgin/EMI have commissioned a contemporary remix of Tears For Fears‘ 1985 hit single Head Over Heels which will debut on streaming services on Friday 17 November.

‘The Talamanca System Tribal Persuasion Remix’ is a Balearic-style ‘chill-out’ mix created by The Talamanca System, who are Mark Barrott, Philip Lauer and Gerd Janson. Before it’s officially ‘released’ tomorrow, you can get a sneak preview of the new mix by visiting the website of LA radio station KCRW via this link and clicking on ‘play’ where it reads ‘Latest Show’. Skip to 2:16 into the programme (it’s the Mario Cotto show).

Ralph Moore, who works as a remix consultant for the Pet Shop Boys, was asked by Virgin/EMI to work on this project. He was charged with choosing a track to remix and finding the appropriate person/team to do it.

The official press release states that “alongside Prefab Sprout and Talk Talk, Tears for Fears are one of the holy triumvirate of Balearic Pop, representing the true spirit of Ibiza”. I spoke to Moore and asked him if he really thought that was true. He told me “Over the years certain Tears For Fears records have undoubtedly become ‘sunset’ records – obviously we’re not talking about Sowing The Seeds Of Love or Advice For The Young At Heart – but Shout was already a club hit anyway, in the ’80s in Ibiza and when the original greatest hits got reissued [Tears Roll Down came out as a 2CD set in 2004] there was a Nic Fanciulli remix of Shout [the Skylark 12″ Extended Club Mix] which I remember hearing in Ibiza. But you know it’s a Balearic sensibility… we’re obviously not talking about club sets, we’re talking about sunset sessions.”

But why go down the Balearic route in the first place? According to Moore, “the remit wasn’t ‘let’s make a four-to-the-floor banger’, for want of a better phrase. It was more about making a record which could get played on the radio, but would also connect with this kind of audience. The Balearic/chill-out sound is having a real revival, again. Mark Barrott, who DJs at a place called Hostal La Torre [in Ibiza], he did a track with the singer from It’s Immaterial [John Campbell] – I know you like a bit of It’s Immaterial! – and he tried to do a track with Paddy McAloon, so I think you can see for those guys, this was a dream project. They took it very seriously. Mark is a trained musician. The job was to contemporise the band for a [new] audience… KCRW in LA is playing the remix alongside a lot of brand new electronic music, and that’s what you want.”

But what did Tears For Fears think of this new remix? “We sent it to the band and I think within two or three days it was approved” says Moore.

I put it to Ralph that there is likely to be a fair proportion of SDE readers and Tears For Fears fans of a certain age who aren’t necessarily going to react positively to this remix, which strips out all of the original instrumentation leaving only the original vocals set to a tribal Balearic beat. “It’s a difficult one” he said. “I’ve very much made this my remit in the world now, to do remix A&R. It’s not for me to say who’s right and who’s wrong. I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved here.”

‘The Talamanca System Tribal Persuasion Remix’ of Head Over Heels will be officially announced tomorrow and you will then be able to play it via Spotify and other streaming services. Have a listen via the KCRW link above, and leave a comment with your thoughts. The Rule The World greatest hits is out now. Read SDE’s track-by-track guide.

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Tears for Fears

Rule The World - CD edition


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Tears For Fears

Rule The World: The Greatest Hits [VINYL]


1. Everybody Wants To Rule The World – from Songs From The Big Chair (1985)
2. Shout (Edit) – from Songs From The Big Chair (1985)
3. I Love You But I’m Lost (New Track)
4. Mad World – From The Hurting (1983)
5. Sowing The Seeds Of Love – from The Seeds Of Love (1989)
6. Advice For The Young At Heart – from The Seeds Of Love (1989)
7. Head Over Heels – from Songs From The Big Chair (1985)
8. Woman In Chains – from The Seeds Of Love (1989)
9. Change – From The Hurting (1983)
10. Stay (New Track)
11. Pale Shelter – From The Hurting (1983)
12. Mothers Talk (US Version) – Re-recorded US single (1986)
13. Break It Down Again – from Elemental (1993)
14. I Believe – from Songs From The Big Chair (1985)
15. Raoul And The Kings Of Spain – from Raoul And The Kings Of Spain (1996)
16. Closest Thing To Heaven – from Everybody Loves A Happy Ending (2004/5)

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Steve Lillywhite’s extended/12″ mixes of Big Country songs from the first two records were some of my favorite moments back in the 80’s.

Stephen DC

This will be naturally terrible to fans of TFF [like me] who expect a different style of music.

It’s not a remix but a mash up of two sounds.

This is like putting banana’s in a meat pie.

By the way, the main piano riff [missing from this abomination] if played backwards is the Eastenders theme – I kid you not.


Can you please tell Mr. Moore that the work he is very proud of is absolute rubbish?

“Remix consultant”??? I may be not surprised for PSB, always trying to experiment or stay with the current trend, but others…
And who would need a consultant anyway?!?!? Especially one who produces this kind of trendy “remixes”, a la David Morales who just slammed the vocals on the same house beat whatever the artist… Probably TFF will be happy with the enormous sales in the Ibiza and other Mediterranean resorts area…


Awful. Sounds like the (mostly) awful Talk Talk remixes from the early 90s, which is exactly where this belongs. In fact, it sounds like when this was really done, as it doesn’t sound contemporary in the slightest…


Got it from Apple Music. It’s not as good as the original, but I like it – fun remix.

Sam Lowry

I prefer the original 12 inch versions of Tears for Fears (they made quite a few good ones).
Matt Pop did do a couple of more recent mixes which I do like though



This remix is an uninspired yawner.

IMHO, Virgin Magnetic Material did a very nice remix of “Head Over Heels” about 5 years ago, which I think was worthy of inclusion on an official release. Also thumbs up for his/their remix of “Pale Shelter” which I quite like. Again these won’t be for everyone here, just thought I’d mention.


I don’t understand why people are getting so upset about 1 remix? It’s nothing unusual or exciting.


TFF are really getting it all wrong in the last couple of years, aren’t they?

1.The SDE box set that everyone waits for is still not released.
2.They put on the market yet another compilation of songs we already own many times.
3.The two new tracks on the new compilation are not released as physical single.
4.And now comes a new mix of a classic single only available as streaming/download.

Not impressed at all…

Dr. D

1. This is apparently being negotiated to appear post-the new album, and the record company wants to “get them back in the marketplace” a bit first…which is also why their original label is attempting to acquire their new album, as well.
2. Again…I don’t think this is up to them. It’s the label.
3. Again…I doubt it’s their doing, but I wouldn’t blame them — if they just released these two tracks as singles or as a double A-side, there would be no incentive for hardcore longtime fans to pick up this new comp at all.
4. The remix was commissioned by the label…and they approved it quickly, as stated above. I suspect Roland and Curt really have no reason not to be honest these days…they must dig it and/or think it’s worthwhile.

Most of the above is assessed from various interviews/scuttlebut over the past year or two. If Paul S. can provide any further clarification, please do so.

Julian H

Paul, what do you think about the possibility of sticking the Ready Boy & Girls EP, alongside the two new tracks, the HOH remix (though guessing from the comments, maybe not – I haven’t listened yet), and some recent live tracks, on a 2CD deluxe edition of the new album? That would give them more of a “home”, wouldn’t it?

And deluxe editions are all the rage these days anyway. Few new albums are released without that option…


I listened, the remix doesn’t work in the context it’s made for


Not great is it…. Stupid to have it as an official TFF release as it is stripped of all the track except the vocal. It would have been better for TFF’s reputation to have had it released under the remixers name featuring TFF, or had it as remixer vs TFF as is sometimes done.

Mr Ed

f**king terrible. someone please step in and sort their release schedule out!! PAUL!!!! begging you!!


The remixed backing music would actually be pretty good on its own but it doesn’t go with the sung lyrics at all. Makes me wonder if they liked the end result since they’re seemingly dumping it as a free streaming track.


If they likes the backing, they should have redone the vocals. The original vocals and this new backing don’t work together at all.

Michael Bird

I might suggest renaming this article, “Informative news piece provides premise for pointless and arrogant arguments over individual taste.”

Chris Squires

That’s a bit harsh Michael.
If you read most of the posts, they do say they realize this “remix” isn’t aimed at them. No-one is really arguing at all. Some don’t like it, some find it tolerable and some think it’s kind of OK. No-one is saying “if you like this then you are an idiot” or getting on too high a horse.
Even in my dismissive post (about two or three up from here) I say I realize our parents probably thought the same about our music.

Arrogance is horrid, but there isn’t much of it here, not to my reading anyway.

Mike the Fish

I don’t like it, but it’s not aimed at me as a market.

Chris Squires

Right finally got around to listening to it and I will admit my hopes weren’t high and I went into it with an already negative expectation. I wasn’t disappointed, it was every bit as bad as I had expected it to be.
It really is the death of talent that someone might think this is a skill. My eldest listens to this kind of tosh every day.

Were our parents saying the same things about us listening to Radio 1 in the late 70s and early 1980s. “This Spandau Ballet is the death of Talent, bring back Tommy Steele – that’s real music”.

There is no craft, no thought. It wouldn’t surprise me to find that I could press a couple of buttons on some program, lay it over the original vocal and hey presto – a remix.



My seven year old could make a better mix pressing play on one of his pre-set sounds on his keyboard.

Criminal that this can be allowed. Truly awful

Boaz Halachmi

Totally agree. This is so horrible.


This song never had a real extended mix. I don’t understand why they just don’t get someone good like Blank & Jones to do a remix like they did for Frankie. Make the lost 12″ mix that never was. Do that and press it onto vinyl and you have an instantst sale. Even put the “chill” mix on the b side if you are feeling generous. The fact is TFF fans have money to spend, they can charge a premium and it will still sell. Just look at the underpressed SFTBC 2014 remix LP, they could have made twice as many and it would have sold out. Anything related to the first three TFF albums is like having a license to print money. Make it attractive and sound good. SERIOUSLY, that is only a problem if you don’t like making money.


head over heels is a terrible song to remix.

in fact, i have all the original 12 inch versions, and that was one
of the most disappointing remixes also (along with the useless
12 inch of ‘i believe’)… after the great work they did on shout
and everybody rules the world, and mothers talk.

there was a lot of potential with the ‘broken’ part at the end,
but if they were going to really remix the song, at least try
to make a decent version of this.

sorry, but the other recent remixes of shout, change and other songs, from the 2004
release of the 2cd ‘tears roll down’ compilationwere at least interesting. not this.


Brian Wenner

This had all the earmarks of something I would hate.. and yet.. I don’t. Am I in love with it? No.. but.. I might not be as averse to alterations of the original as many.

I’d love to see a promo/official release.


Um… without wishing to criticize anyone else’s taste – I love this song, but having read the description of the remix… I don’t ever want to hear it.

Neil Kelly

Having just heard it have to say i have no problem with the remix. Not a patch on the original but at least it’s different and targeted to a different audience over 30 years on. Oh and i DO see the point in it


My preference is always for an old-school extended version, or at least something that sounds like the song that I loved in the first place, only longer or rearranged.

Second best s when they remix still at least sounds like a song, even if it’s a very different song. I don’t mind trying something out with new instrumentation and rhythms as long as they seem to work well together, and sometimes the new track can be a great experience in and of itself.

I hate generic thumpa-thumpa mixes that strip out everything except two lines of lyrics that get looped incessantly and then played over a redundant bassline and beat with noises and no sense of melody or song structure. I stopped doing the drugs that make that kind of music interesting a long time ago, and even then, i was only marginally interested in that type of remix when I was high out of my mind. To quote Jennifer Saunders in the Absolutely Fabulous track with PSB: “Dull, soulless, dance music…”

Having trouble getting this one to stream on my computer at work right now, but it sounds like it falls into category 2, so I’m curious to hear how it sounds. I wound up liking the Kygo mix of Take on Me from a year or so ago (though it still doesn’t hold a candle to the original), so this might make for a nice footnote on one of my absolute favorite TFF songs.


TTF are appearing on strictly come dancing bbc1 this weekend. The professional dancers will be doing a routine to their performance. Maybe they’ll be doing this version of head over heals?…… glad to see amazon also stating the vinyl release day has been bought forward to this year


*TFF obviously . Fat old fingers


That would be FOF?



eddie hollidays

“I’ve very much made this my remit in the world now, to do remix A&R. It’s not for me to say who’s right and who’s wrong. I’m very proud of what we’ve achieved here.”

It’s funny – because listening to the remix and then reading this I automatically corrected that statement to – “I’m a massive chancer, people pay me for this, so why not!”



Im also a huge fan of the 80’s remixes. It was basically the single version, add the chorus as an instrumental and if you were lucky they would add the entire first part of the single as an instrumental. Then add a break somewhere and that was it. It would come out to 6’30 minutes or so. I am a huge collector and have thousands of these remixes from the 80’s. All on cd. Every year I can’t wait to get the new So80s. According to Blank & Jones it should be coming before Christmas (I emailed them a while ago).

And Chris Squire is right, back in the day we paid for that stuff with our Friday & Saturday night restaurant jobs. I would go to the local record store and they would allow you to listen to the 12″ version of the song you loved. And it better be at least 6’30 minutes and have a nice dub version b side otherwise you wouldn’t shell out 3x the price of the regular single.

I actually love the new Tears For Fears remix. If you add extra production to an already perfect song, it’s very tricky of course. I find it very hit or miss. This one is a hit fo me. Give it a chance, it may grow on you. If your entire life you are used to the regular version and all of a sudden listen to a 100% different production, chances are you’re not going to immediately love it.

My suggestion would be, to spice up this rather dull greatest hits compilation, add a 2nd disc w remixes. Like they did with the 1st greatest hits compilation that Paul referred to above (in very limited print, it was hard to find). Commission some more remixes and add them to the ltd edition 2cd.


Remixes for TFF aren’t a new thing. The Fluke remix of Johnny Panic and The Bible Of Dreams took them to Number One on the Dance chart in 1991 and Number 70 on the mainstream list. I have the 12″ single


Yep and that was a balearic anthem. Treasure my cds of that.

Ken Evans

I wonder what percent of us followers of this site didn’t understand a word of this post.


Well, I *am* of a certain age (well, old enough that I was a preteen when TFF was making their first dent on the U.S. charts, anyway), and I appreciate this new mix for what it’s attempting to do — introduce an old song to a new audience. I’m constantly surprised at how little younger music fans know about music that’s older than they are. I don’t know whether to chalk that up to being incurious, a wealth of options for listening to music, a move to more on-demand systems vs. lean back, etc., but it still makes me a) sad for what they’re missing out on and b) happy that I came of age at a time when it all seemed more manageable.

But I’ve digressed — I like the mix, even if I’m kinda bothered that the chorus never gets resolved in this version (i.e. there’s no “Don’t take my heart, don’t break my heart
Don’t, don’t, don’t throw it away”).


Using a free daw and a free version of a certain spectrogram editor this ‘remix’ can be achieved in 10 minutes.

This remix is amateur at best. The ambient chord structure is lazy and inaccurate. An insult to fans and even more embarrassing than the Mauro Piccotto wannbe ‘Mario Cotto’ (which is clearly a case for intellectual property experts). I actually blushed when I saw the name Mario Cotto. I went bright red.

A ‘remix’ is The Flaming Lips – The Golden Path (Ewan Pearson Vocal Mix)

Mark Elliott

I love an old style extended remix as much as the next man (or woman) but some of my favourite tracks are from the chuck it all out bar a few vocal samples and create a new track. Like this for example;

Moloko – The Time is Now (Francois k’s Blissed Out Dub)


The original extended and remixed versions are the best! 1980s 12inch versions were so good and knock the socks off any new remixes that just destroy the songs I love.


The remix is simply awful. It has robbed the song of its identity and authenticity. Just like those newer Depeche Mode, Michael Jackson remixes which butchered the songs beyond recognition , i wish the labels could and should maintain the sanctity of the original recordings.

Matteo Leoni

I totally agree, it’s a useless and bad remix.

Rob Puricelli

Who the hell is making these choices for TFF these days??

I am truly lost for words.

Chris Squires

All of the above, well mostly.

I am that certain age (50) and I have always preferred my remixes to be extended or slight variations that sit close to the original. Don’t forget we had to buy this stuff with real Saturday Job money, not just stick it on Spotify, paid for by parents, so if I was shelling out £2.49 for the Extended remix of something like “The Icing on the Cake” then I wanted it to sound something like a song I already liked, I don’t want it disassembled and put back Morecambe and Wise style.
Personally the only time I have bought stuff that was disassembled to a large degree was when Oldfield starting messing about in Ibiza and things like the BT remixes are unlistenable to an Oldfield fan. Fingernails on a blackboard to me. But I guess people like me are not the target market, poor deaf eejits.

The Little Chef

Not keen. It sounds too dissonant for me. The sweeping bass notes sound like they’re in the wrong key. Disappointing – that could have been wonderful.

Erick Haight

First, kudos for the set list in general — nice flow over three hours, with some surprises (John Maus, Lindsey Buckingham) that add dollops of quirk without compromising the journey. But as far as the TFF remake/remodel, the tonal shift between the vocal melody and the slightly ominous cinematic vibe of the backing track never quite gel. I kept thinking how the a cappella of “Pale Shelter” or even “Break It Down Again” would fit the tone of the “remix” much better. I wanted Technicolor sunshine for one of my favorites, but I got pallid schizoid sounds instead.

Keith Ainsworth

I’ve got to say somewhere at the start of the 90’s mixes strayed too far from their source for me. Through the 80’s I bought a lot of 12″ mixes. These extended my enjoyment of songs giving a bit of variation and interest. But the DJ Pierre remixes 12″ of Pet Shop Boys ‘I Wouldn’t Normally Do This Kind Of Thing’ were such an unvarying listen with only a tenuous connection the original that I largely stopped buying them.

The fact that the PSB further listening discs are the work of the band themselves and not the remixers of the day is what makes them an automatic purchase for me.

Marcel F G Rijs

No physical release? What’s the point then, exactly? No sale.


Your prediction of what fans of a ‘certain age’ would make of this is entirely correct.
I do wonder what the point of this remix is.

– Tuneless with semi-tribal percussion and (god help us) panpipes.
Like someone with a laptop having a first stab at adding instrument samples to a vocal track.

Even very, very zonked out at dawn on a Balearic Island, this would still irritate.

Mr. Pessimist

“Your prediction of what fans of a ‘certain age’ would make of this is entirely correct.”

That assumption, along with the prediction, are both incorrect. I don’t know if I’ll like it yet, but I am interested to hear it, and I am most assuredly of a “certain age”, if not perhaps even maybe a little older than that.

Maybe a better sentence would “what fans of a certain limited musical disposition” would make of it….


Yet another non-physical release – HATE THEM! I want to listen to my music on CDs and Vinyl (NOT streams and mp3s). EMI/Virgin can put this where the sun don’t shine (no offence to Tears For Fears as love their stuff but I want music on proper formats).


Shout was definitely a big Balearic track in the late eighties and it was included on Alfredo’s Original Sounds of Ibiza mix cd from many years ago

Interestingly, the piano from Head Over Heals was heavily featured in a Brothers in Rhythm DMC remix of Clivilles and Cole‘s Keep it Coming in 1992. Definitely not a Balearic track, but a mainstay of DJs like Sasha and Dave Seaman back in the day (and always got a good reaction).


ive not heard the new remix, but Lauer and Janson are also known as the Tuff City Kids who have had a stream of successful and highly regarded remixes over the last two years. I look forward to hearing this.


That piano intro was also sampled by Ca$h Money & Marvelous on their 1987 jam Ugly People Be Quiet. I expect you can find it out there on the interweb. Clever people like me who talk loudly in restaurants will already have on the original 12″ import on Sleeping Bag. Def!!


The vocals set to the new instrumentation just seem to jar too much for me – makes it sound like the 2 different tracks its made of badly mixed together – not for me but i’m sure some blissed out 20yr olds in ‘beefa’ wont give a sh*t either way, as long as it soundtracks the sunrise at cafe del mar nicely for them!

AND yes I did all that myself in my early 20’s waaaay back in 1989/1990’s so I know what i’m moaning on about!

Jesper Jensen

‘beefa’ = ibiza? Love it. Perfect. I have actually been in beefa back in my 30s.


Bar M :)


Somewhere in the late eighties – early nineties, the definition of remix got altered.

Why do we still call this a remix ? A remix is just what the word says : mixing the original content again, in a different way.

If you throw everything but one element of the original song away and add new things that weren’t originally there, you are not remixing a song but remaking it.

The word remix is also used in the case where it’s in fact different edit of the same mix.

We need a better definition of these things.

Mark Elliott

I’m sure if you class them as remixes the “production points” allocated for the work are less than if you consider it a new production.

I’m sure this is mentioned in this BBC Radio 1 documentary from 1990 that I saved off a cassette https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKAxkK_JJ1g

But you’re right they are basically new tracks pretty much in a lot of cases in modern times (or a lot earlier thinking about it).

I class remixes in 3 different ways;

1. The Splice and Dice – Take just the original multitrack and make an extended mix (al the Tom Moulton method).
2. The Splice, Dice and extra stuff – Similar to the above be bringing new elements into the mix like samples or maybe new instrumentation.
3. The New Track – The title of the song is the same and maybe we have a few snippets of vocals, but otherwise it’s brand new.


As long as it has the original vocals, it’s a remix. :-)


You cannot RE mix anything if its not there to begin with,its a remake musically at least if you only have the voice,Eighties remixes were the best such as ones made by Martin Rushent , the track still had clearly identifiable elements but where processed and thrown about the mix in a different way.


I couldn’t agree more with you, Alan.

Most mixes that have been released in the past 30 years have been remakes… and very BAD ones.

Where are the fantastic 80s Remixes and Extended Versions? These used to be made in a very interesting and intelligent way… not just repeating rhythm and vocal fragments like today’s ones. You had nice instrumental parts and interesting effects here and there… but the mix was still similar to the 7inch version of a song and not a complete remake.


“Mark Barrott, who DJs at a place called Hostal La Torre [in Ibizia], he did a track with the singer from It’s Immaterial [John Campbell]”

Anyone know what this is and if it’s been released? Would be very interested to hear!


I would hardly call Tears for Fears or Prefab Sprout as part of a “triumvirate of Balearic Pop”, Talk Talk possibly but it’s a pretty tenuous connection!
In the early days of Balearic clubs it was a pretty eclectic mix, it’s Immaterial’s Driving was played often as well as XTC’s Nearly Africa but then so was Mandy Smiths I Can’t Wait but to push Tears for Fears as leaders of Balearic Pop is a bit of a stretch but hey I guess that’s marketing for you! Still interested to take a listen though.


MMMMnnnnope. I dont need a physical release.

Steven Campbell

Do we know if this mix is going to get an official physical release? It’s one of my favourite songs of theirs on the Songs From The Big Chair album.