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The Ultimate Collection Box set, Original recording remastered

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Who'd have believed it? With its deliberate storybook-inspired title, Everybody Loves A Happy Ending signals a welcome return for Tears For Fears - one of the biggest and best-loved bands of the post-MTV age-and one of the most unexpected reunions in pop music history.

"This is the album that should have followed Seeds Of Love in many ways," says singer-songwriter Roland ... Read more in Amazon's Tears For Fears Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (14 July 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Box set, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Ultimate Collection
  • ASIN: B00008OQJU
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 56,775 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By elektric101 on 15 Mar. 2011
Format: Audio CD
Ok, the title 'The Ultimate Collection' maybe a little misleading. However, if you're looking for a TFF Greatest Hits Collection then this is one to definitely consider. It chronicles TFF's first 15 singles from the period of The Hurting to Elemental in Chronological order. This means you get, 'The Way You Are', 'Break It Down Again' & 'Cold' all included here, whereas all 3 were omitted from the 'Tears Roll Down' collection.

Yes, the choice of tracks on CD2 & CD3 are random to say the least, but you do get 2 Curt Smith Solo efforts tacked on the end. Treat them as bonus tracks, and in my opinion all 3 CD's are of a better sound quality than the original sources anyway.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 14 reviews
43 of 44 people found the following review helpful
The Best-Sounding Tears For Fears Remastering To Date! 22 July 2005
By Jason W. Bellenger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
After hearing the stunning job that Studio Hilversum did for ABC on the Ultimate Collection I bought my copy of Tears For Fears' 'The Ultimate Collection', 32-Bit remastered by Studio Hilversum as well. Both are import releases from Universal Netherlands.

Tears For Fears finally got a worthwhile remastering treatment. I've had many issues with buying poor to mediocre remasters from Universal previously. In fact, nothing else compares to the remastering done on this 3-disc compilation of hits, album cuts, remixes, and rarities. The only other Tears For Fears' remastering that's worthwhile is the 1999 album remasters: The Hurting [UK Bonus Tracks], Songs from the Big Chair, and The Seeds of Love. However, the tracks pulled from these albums sound yet even better on this multi-disc compilation.

The collection features 32-Bit "Floating Point Mastered" sound, as stated on the back of the sleeve. Most labels are currently using 24-bit mastering technology, but Universal Netherlands takes the music a step further, offering a mastering at a higher bit rate. The results are breathtaking, creating music that is alive, rich, wide, crisp, clean, and full.

Listening to the earlier cuts from the first album, 'The Hurting', is like experiencing these songs in a whole new dimension. Both tracks have a deeper, louder punch not heard in previous masters. Pop in CD 1 and the differences will be heard immediately. "Mad World" has never sounded more full and alive. Listen to those drums! Check out the part starting at 2:23. Jump to "Change". Woah! Recorded in 1982? No way! Check out that "Extended Version" on the bonus CD as well. Did your 12" vinyl ever sound this clean? I doubt it. I don't ever remember the guitar in "Pale Shelter" ever sounding so crisp to the point in which it jumps out at you. Check out that "Long Version" as well!

Personal favourite "Everybody Wants To Rule The World" benefited hugely from this 32-Bit remaster. Listen to previous so-called remasters -- 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of Tears for Fears anyone? Shout: The Very Best of Tears for Fears anyone? Flat! Flat! Flat! This release puts the mastering of those collections to shame!!! It's like lifting a blanket off my speakers! One would never know that "Everybody Wants To Rule The World" has a bass line from listening to those previous releases. In fact, I just figured it was rather weak production. But, at last, you can hear it here! The bass line is heavy and will vibrate your surroundings. The drums are crisp and clean. The guitars soar. Finally! The music is alive.

"Head Over Heels" is yet another example of many. The grand piano heard in previous releases -- besides the 1999 remaster, of course -- has always sounded flat, dull, and out of tune. It sounded dead. Finally, the grand piano sounds like it's being played right in front of me, not in the background. Those notes are finally in tune!

Wait until you hear the drums in "Mother's Talk"! Wow. That's all I'll say about this track.

For those who are curious, all tracks presented here are, to the best of my knowledge, the original lp versions. "Pale Shelter" is thankfully featured in a longer 4:35 version, which features a proper, cold ending instead of a fade. The version of "Head Over Heels" featured here is not the single version but rather the original lp version -- that is, the version which features "Broken [Live]" tagged on the end. While I would have preferred a few more rare 12" versions or remixes instead of the two Curt Smith solo tracks, they are a nice addition to the release, considering Roland Orzabal is featured here with his solo tracks under the Tears For Fears moniker.

Everyone has their favourite Tears For Fears tracks. Nonetheless, many rarities and hard to find tracks are missing in this collection. Where is the original U.K. 12" version of "Shout"? Where is the Sports Aid track "Everybody Wants To Run The World"? These are a few tracks which are still not available on CD. I could knock this release down a star or two for not including such rarities, but the sound quality alone by far makes up for it on those classic tracks which are included.

I could go on about each and every track, but I believe the point has been made. This release rocks! Just do A/B comparisons to these songs on other Tears For Fears releases, and you'll clearly hear the differences. Other releases are often flat and lifeless, whereas the music heard on this release is full and wide. What a difference! This is the Tears For Fears release to purchase!
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Classic Tears For Fears 8 Jun. 2003
By K. E. Thompson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Of course a lot of newly released compilations contain the usual hit singles or radio played songs from the original recordings. But this collection offers some great selections from each of the Tears For Fears catalog of nearly 20 years. I love the bonus cd and mixes, but honestly, after hearing Roland's version of David Bowie's Ashes To Ashes....I would have paid for this one song. It reminded me just how great a singer Roland Orzabal is and how much the songs of Tears For Fears mean to me after all of the years that have passed. They sound as great now as they did then when i first heard Shout as a teen.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Tears For Fears - One of the Most Important 80s Music Acts 12 April 2012
By Serkan Okar - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I must admit back in the 80s, I wasn't a Tears for Fears fan. I listened to bands like Duran Duran, Wham!, Culture Club, Madonna, the usual British/American pop icons. Tears for Fears wasn't advertised or publicized as much as those other pop acts (even though The Songs From the Big Chair did very well in 1985). After 27 years, I begin to fully appreciate the complexity of Tears for Fears. I can now honestly say that Tears for Fears was better than most of their contemporary music acts. Tears for Fears has never been an ordinary pop duo making forgettable simple pop tunes. Their music is far too complex, both lyrically and musically, to fit into a simple "pop" category. There is a kind of timelessness to their music that continues even after the "pop" fad is gone. I can testify to this as my appreciation of their music is still growing after all these years.

Ultimate Collection contains great selection of songs that showcase duo's depth. It is not a "greatest hits" or "best of" collection and it is not "Ultimate" as the title seems to suggest as it misses some of their well-known hits. Nevertheless, it is still a serious collection. I bought this album because I didn't know most of the tracks on CD 2. (CD 1 contains most of their well-known hits). CD 2 is a little more obscure in the sense they didn't top the charts but songs are truly remarkable and they showcase the range of duo's vocals. I rate each song with 5 stars. Musicianship is top quality as the songs range from pop/rock to jazzy, bluesy tunes to ballads. The lyrics match the quality of music which is very rare in pop/rock genre.

I had been tracking the price for this item since 2009 and purchased it in early 2011 when it dropped below $30 at one point but never below $27. If you are familiar with Tears for Fears and own any of their albums and want to explore more of their sound, this is an excellent selection. I just hope maybe in the near future, they will release some sort of box set with almost everything they collaborated on.
Ultimate Indeed My My My 30 Dec. 2014
By David D. McFarland - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This Ultimate collection is the bomb. It covers their best tracks starting from "Mad World" & ending with a nice Curt Smith solo number on the bonus CD. I actually made a single CD version of my favorites from this collection but, not using anything from the bonus CD. One number I found extremely interesting is the version of "Head Over Heels" which was the same exact version KROQ in Pasadena, Ca (same town I was hatched as well) used in the 80's, which included the broken reprise (clean intro without broken at beginning). Most of radio always played the single remix of the track only. Anyway, I'm a TFF collector and if your looking for a solid "Best Of" collection in excellent sound, this is the one. Sure, there are other collections but this one is the best sounding one I've heard in my 30 + years of TFF collecting. I highly recommend it, for the person looking to see what they were all about, to the collector as well. You can get it for under 20 USD as well! So what are you waiting for?
Drop by my wesite sometime @ "JudeMac Forever" & look around. Always something for about everyone.
One of the best Compilations of Music I Own 3 July 2010
By J. Olsen - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
For a hardcore TFF fan or a casual fan, this is the go-to set to buy. I love it. It covers most of their first two albums in depth, The Hurting and Songs From the Big Chair, and Seeds of Love. You get some great songs from TFF when it was a Roland-run show from Elemental and Raoul & The Kings of Spain, which I appreciate, because I love those albums. I love that they put a few covers Roland did and some extended versions of their earlier songs. Bloodletting Go is one of my favorite songs, and should have been on Elemental, but so glad they put it on here. I never tire of this set. I own every piece of music TFF has put out, but, like I said, any style TFF fan, or even new fan, will love this. The sound production and remastering on this is fantastic.
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