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Albert Hammond - Legend II

  by Lisa Torem

published: 9 / 3 / 2013

Albert Hammond - Legend II
Label: Hypertension
Format: CD


Fantastic retrospective album from Albert Hammond, who has taken some of his best known songs from his fifty year career as both a singer and songwriter and reworked them

Born in the UK, but raised in Gibraltar, Albert Hammond took songwriting to new levels. His first partnership with Mike Hazelwood resulted in 1968’s ‘Little Arrows.’ Once moving to the US west coast,‘It Never Rains in Southern California’ afforded him more acclaim. By the 1970s he was dishing out tunes for Mama Cass, Petula Clark, Olivia Newton-John, Elton John and Johnny Matthis. His collaborations with Hal David and Carole Bayer Sager also kept him on the map. Hammond also worked with successful Latin artists. Julio Iglesias recorded ‘The Air That I Breathe’ and ‘To All The Girls I Loved Before’ – as a duet with Willie Nelson. In the 1980s and 1990s, he continued attracting interest. In 1988, ‘One Moment in Time,’ was used for the Olympic Games in Seoul, Korea. For that song he was awarded an Emmy.‘The Air That I Breathe’ was covered by the Hollies and Simply Red. In 'Legend II', he invites us in to listen to a diverse set of his standards, many of which have evolved over a 50-year history. Consisting of 18 tracks, sung solely by the songwriter, with modest keyboards and good support from the guitar and percussion, he reveals his story-building prowess. His voice conveys great yearning in the first one, ‘Don’t You Love Me Anymore?’ – “Why do you pull away when you used to hold me close, baby?” In ‘I Don’t Wanna Live Without Your Love,’ he really nails structure and deep emotion. ‘I Don’t Wanna Lose You’ has a decidedly Bowie appeal with R & B undertones. A lover unappreciated moves centre stage in ‘Ask Me How I Feel’ Two very romantic songs follow: ‘The Way of the World’ and ‘Be Tender With Me Baby.’ Continuing along those lines is ‘I Need to be in Love,’ with its delicate fairytale introduction and stark piano. Another piano-infused ballad, ‘When You Tell Me That You Love Me’ is compelling, but understated. It is given a royal instrumental treatment, which frames the inspiring words firmly, but gently. ‘The Snows of New York’ combines loneliness with place. “When you’re feeling lost in the snows of New York/Lift your heart and think of me…” The tone remains fairly even keel until the more rocking ‘I Guess I Really Had It Coming’ and the caustic ‘If You Gotta Break Another Heart’, ‘Rebecca’ is a portrait of an emerging woman - "She’s riding her bike up on Mulholland Drive, and then reading magazines in a chic salon.” ‘Everything I Want To Do’ has a contagious Calypso feel and is unique to this collection of mostly straight-ahead ballads. The CD ends with ‘Down by the River,’ where “silver fish lay on its side…” 'Legend II', which follows 2010’s 'Legend', gives us a wonderful way to hear Hammond’s ideas flow and to discover his talents when collaborating with the likes of Mike Hazelwood, Diane Warren and Holly Knight and even Richard Carpenter.

Track Listing:-
1 Dont You Love Me Anymore
2 I Don'T Wanna Live Without Your Love
3 I Dont Wanna Lose You
4 Ask Me How I Feel
5 The Way Of The World
6 Be Tender With Me Baby
7 I Need To Be In Love
8 When You Tell Me That You Love Me
9 One Moment In Time
10 The Snows Of New York
11 Room In Your Heart
12 Looking Through The Eyes Of A Child
13 I Guess I Really Had It Coming
14 Careless Heart
15 If You Gotta Break Another Heart
16 Rebecca
17 Everything I Want To Do
18 Down By The River

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Interview (2017)
Albert Hammond - Interview
Multi-award winning performer and songwriter Albert Hammond rose to the challenge of releasing 'In Symphony', in which he reimagines some of his best known songs with the help of an orchestra. He speaks with Lisa Torem about fulfilling a lifelong dream and more
Interview (2015)

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Memorial Hall, Sheffield, 21/5/2014
Albert Hammond - Memorial Hall, Sheffield, 21/5/2014
At the Memorial Hall in Sheffield, Nicky Crewe watches musician and producer Albert Hammond play a revelatory set from across his fifty year songwriting career


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