First Listen: Lorde Covers ‘Everybody Wants To Rule The World’ By Tears For Fears For ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’


Back in September we got our first listen of Christina Aguilera’s new song We Remain as featured on the upcoming soundtrack to The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (a song that, IMHO, works very well for the film). Today we get to hear a portion of Lorde’s contribution to the Catching Fire soundtrack. A 90-second clip of Lorde’s cover of Everybody Wants to Rule the World by Tears for Fears has been released and as you can hear below, her take on the song is quite a departure from the original version of the song (which was a HUGE hit in the 80’s). Click below to hear Lorde do Tears for Fear for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.

Some covers are just tired re-treads of a jam, and some take the original, rend it asunder, and reassemble it as something wholly different — and equally amazing. Lorde’s “Hunger Games: Catching Fire” track — a cover of Tears For Fears’ “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” — does the latter … Although on the surface a jangly song, Tears For Fears’ 1985 hit is actually pretty dark in theme. “The concept is quite serious — it’s about everybody wanting power, about warfare and the misery it causes,” the band’s Curt Smith said back when the song was released. 17-year-old wunderkind Lorde brings out that inherent darkness with her version, giving the track a layer of grime and an ominous build that culminates in the Pure Heroine singer practically keening, “everybody wants to rule the world.” It’s a dramatic song, a cinematic song, one that evokes all the terror and determination that builds up inside “Hunger Games” protagonist Katniss Everdeen as she prepares to re-enter the deathly arena. “I think it’s absolutely amazing,” Smith told MTV Hive of the cover in an interview slated to run later this week. “But then I love her, I think she’s brilliant…. We love it when other people cover our stuff. Sometimes we steal them and use their version live.”

For those of you unfamiliar with the original version of this song, you can hear it here:

I have always been a BIG fan of the original version of the song but I can also appreciate when a song is given new life with a very inventive cover. Lorde has a distinctive sound and her cover is very representative of that sound. It makes sense that Everybody Wants to Rule the World would be chosen for the Catching Fire soundtrack in regards to lyrical content and it definitely makes sense that a haunting performer like Lorde would be chosen to remake the song in her image. I approve. What do you think? Children of the 80’s, what say you?


  • Emily Lange

    am i the only one who thinks shes pushing those low notes to hard? they sound forced. otherwise amazing! great change of the original!

  • Vilma

    I love Tears for Fears. The version of the song is both haunting and awesome at the same time! I can’t wait to hear the whole thing!

  • D@n

    I’m pretty sure at the time of recording she was singing at a faster pace (Possibly at the speed of the T4F version) and it was slowed down to fit with darker tone of the instrumental. Along with a little pitch editing.. Which I think just makes her sounds like she needs some coffee or a nap. It seems clear they didn’t go in with the specific intention of creating a dark version of Everybody wants to rule the world. They probably already had the Instrumental and went through a list of lyrics they liked until they found something that was kinda fitting.

  • ShinyNZ

    I like this (and not just ’cause I’m a Kiwi). It definitely works for the mood and theme of The Hunger Games stories. As a cover for an action flick – it’s not half bad. It’s obviously been edited pretty heavily but still… will make a good addition to the soundtrack.

    • Kim

      “and not just ’cause I’m a Kiwi” This gave me a little chuckle :)