Raoul and the Kings of Spain
Raoul and the Kings of Spain is the fifth studio album by the British pop-rock band Tears for Fears, released on 10 October 1995. Like the band's previous album, Elemental (1993), it is essentially a solo effort by Roland Orzabal—neither album being made with the involvement of Curt Smith, who had left the band at that time.
|Raoul and the Kings of Spain|
|Studio album by|
|Released||10 October 1995|
|Recorded||1993–1994 at Neptune's Kitchen (England) and Record Plant (Los Angeles, CA, USA).|
|Genre||New wave, pop rock|
Cherry Pop (2009 reissue)
|Tears for Fears chronology|
|Singles from Raoul and the Kings of Spain|
The album, according to Orzabal, has a recurring theme of familial relationships and delves into his own Spanish heritage. The album's title was mooted as far back as the 1980s as a possible contender for the band's third album (which ultimately became The Seeds of Love). Raoul was originally Orzabal's first name given at birth before being anglicized by his parents to Roland (Orzabal later gave the name "Raoul" to his first son, born in 1991).
The album was originally scheduled to be released by Mercury Records but the project was cancelled after Tears For Fears left the label to sign with Sony/Epic Records. The album was eventually released by Sony in October 1995 with a slightly different track listing and new cover art.
The album peaked at #41 in the UK and #79 in the US, but was more successful in continental Europe, reaching #23 in Italy, #13 in Belgium (Wallonia) and #5 in France. It was poorly received by critics, with much of the criticism directed at Orzabal's lyrics, which Tom Demalon of Allmusic described as "either inscrutable or embarrassingly silly". He also described some of the album's musical arrangements as "genuinely pretty, if unexciting".
The album features a reunion with Oleta Adams, who had recorded and toured extensively with the band for The Seeds of Love album, and here duets with Orzabal on the track "Me and My Big Ideas".
The front cover photo titled, Running Them In At Pamplona, is by Jose Galle and is a depiction of the annual "Running of the Bulls" festival held in Pamplona in Spain. Several inner sleeve photographs were by David Tack, taken from his book Impressions Of Spain published by Quartet (the Bullfighter On Horseback on page 4 is Rafael Peralta, a renowned Spanish Rejoneador bullfighter). Inner sleeve photos of Roland Orzabal were taken by Pamela Springsteen, shot at the historic Mission Inn in Riverside, California, where the promo video for "Raoul and the Kings of Spain" was filmed.
|1994 promotional CD (Mercury|
|1.||"Raoul and the Kings of Spain"||5:17|
|2.||"Falling Down"||Roland Orzabal||4:55|
|5.||"Sketches of Pain"||Mislabeled on CD back insert as "Sketches of Spain"; the actual title of the track is a play on the Miles Davis album by that name||4:21|
|6.||"Los Reyes Catolicos"||1:48|
|8.||"Queen of Compromise"||3:52|
|9.||"Don't Drink the Water"||4:56|
|10.||"Me and My Big Ideas"||4:33|
|11.||"Los Reyes Catolicos"||Mislabeled on CD back insert as "Los Retes Catolicos"||3:43|
|1995 release (Sony/Epic Records)|
|1.||"Raoul and the Kings of Spain"||5:16|
|5.||"Sketches of Pain"||Orzabal||4:21|
|6.||"Los Reyes Católicos"||1:44|
|8.||"Humdrum and Humble"||4:11|
|9.||"I Choose You"||Orzabal||3:26|
|10.||"Don't Drink the Water"||4:51|
|11.||"Me and My Big Ideas"||4:33|
|12.||"Los Reyes Católicos (Reprise)"||3:43|
|Bonus tracks (2009 Cherry Red Records reissue)|
|13.||"All of the Angels"||4:31|
|14.||"The Madness of Roland"||5:10|
|15.||"Queen of Compromise"||3:57|
|16.||"Until I Drown"||3:23|
|17.||"War of Attrition"||3:45|
|18.||"Raoul and the Kings of Spain" (acoustic)||4:29|
|19.||"Break It Down Again" (acoustic)||3:14|
Tears for Fears
- Roland Orzabal – lead vocals, guitar, keyboards
- Producers – Tim Palmer (Tracks 1-7, 10, 11 & 12); Roland Orzabal and Alan Griffiths (Tracks 8 & 9).
- Engineer – Mark O'Donoughue
- Mastered by Bob Ludwig at Gateway Mastering (Portland, ME).
- Album Coordinators – Jason Geake and Philippa Sprigg
- Design – Gail Marowitz
- Front Cover Photo – Jose Galle
- Inner Sleeve Photos – David Tack and Pamela Springsteen
- Management – Debra Baum, Whirlwind Entertainment Group Inc.
|US (Billboard Top 200)||79|
|1995||"Raoul and the Kings of Spain"||UK Singles Chart||31|
|1996||"God's Mistake"||UK Singles Chart||62|