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Legendary Licks: Neil Taylor, Former Tears for Fears Guitarist, Releases New Album

Updated: Aug 25, 2023

A photo of Neil Martin Taylor, former Tears for Fears guitarist
Neil Taylor

Everybody knows "Everybody Wants to Rule the World" by the English band Tears for Fears. From the hooky two-chord riff that defined the song to the sublime guitar solo in the outro by legendary session guitarist Neil Tailor, the song has become one of the essential songs from the second British invasion in the 1980s.

Taylor has brought his legendary licks to APM Music with the release of his album Dark Matter under Chris Goulstone's rock label Chapel of Rock. The album is heavy, dark, and booming with pure Rock energy, perfect for any content requiring an adrenaline boost.

He began working on this album in Canada, using his portable setup. He returned to England to finish the production and sent it to Chris Goulstone for further polishing and release.

"I just wanted a kind of dark vibe to it, which I think it really has," Taylor said."


Now available for Licensing.

Track listing:

  • "Dark Matter"

  • "Sin of Sins"

  • "Skin Creeper"

  • "The Unholy"

  • "Storm Riser"

  • "Darkest Moon"

  • "Impenetrate"

  • "Days in the Haze"

Stems, stings, and underscores are available.


Neil Taylor grew up in Bristol, England, and his musical journey began when he joined the band Neon as a session musician in the early 1980s. Neon became Naked Eyes, which also had a hit single, "Always Something There to Remind Me."

"I started playing guitar when I was 13," Taylor said in an exclusive interview with APM Music. "All I wanted to do was music."

Watch the full interview.

One of his bandmates in Neon was bassist Curt Smith, who would co-found Tears for Fears with Roland Orzabal a year and a half later.

"Top of the Pops came on, and I was watching it, then these two guys came on, and I thought I knew them," Taylor said. "It was Curt Smith and Roland Orzabal, and they were doing 'Mad World.'"

A few months later, Taylor bumped into Smith at a party and asked him to join the band and work on the band's sophomore album, Songs from the Big Chair (1985), which became a massive hit globally. The first song that Taylor worked on? The solo for "Everybody Wants to Rule the World."

Taylor returned to the studio with the band in 1989, recorded tracks for the band's third album, The Seeds of Love, and then went on a world tour the following year, culminating in a massive show at Knebworth.

"That was an amazing experience," Taylor said. "I've never played in front of that many people."

After his stint with Tears for Fears, Taylor played with some of the best music artists in the world, including:

  • Tina Turner

  • Morrissey

  • Jane Wiedlin

  • Propaganda

  • Howard Jones

  • Chris De Burgh

  • Natalie Imbruglia

  • James Morrison

  • Naked Eyes

  • Nick Carter

Taylor also played in Robbie Williams's touring band for a solid decade.

"We played Knebworth for three nights...and many big places," Taylor said. "Ten years of that was brilliant. I really felt as though I got to be where I wanted to be."


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