The Union (Elton John and Leon Russell album)

Last updated

The Union
TU cover.jpg
Studio album by
Released19 October 2010
Recorded20 November 2009 – March 2010 at The Village, Los Angeles, California
Genre
Length63:12 (Standard album)
66:28 (iTunes deluxe LP)
71:22 (Deluxe CD and vinyl)
Label Decca (US)
Mercury (UK)
Producer T Bone Burnett
Elton John chronology
Rocket Man: The Definitive Hits
(2007)
The Union
(2010)
Gnomeo & Juliet Soundtrack
(2011)
Leon Russell chronology
A Mighty Flood
(2008)
The Union
(2010)
Life Journey
(2014)

The Union is a collaboration studio album by singer-songwriters Elton John and Leon Russell, released on 19 October 2010 in the US and on 25 October in the UK. This is John's second collaboration album, after 1993's Duets . This is the first studio release by John since 1979's Victim of Love without any of his regular band members. It is also his highest charting studio album on the Billboard 200 since 1976's Blue Moves , debuting at No. 3, as well as Russell's highest charting studio album since 1972's Carney . The Union was No. 3 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 30 Best Albums of 2010. [1]

Contents

The album features appearances by Booker T. Jones (on Hammond B-3), Neil Young (vocals), Robert Randolph (pedal steel), and Brian Wilson (vocal harmonies). This album was dedicated to Guy Babylon, John's keyboard player who died a year before its release. [2]

"If It Wasn't for Bad" was nominated for the 53rd Annual Grammy Awards for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals and "Hey Ahab" became a staple in John's concert tours.

Track listing

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."If It Wasn't for Bad" Leon Russell 3:43
2."Eight Hundred Dollar Shoes" Elton John, Bernie Taupin 3:23
3."Hey Ahab"John, Taupin5:39
4."Gone to Shiloh" (Featuring Neil Young)John, Taupin4:50
5."Hearts Have Turned to Stone" (Moved to twelfth track on some CD copies)Russell3:47
6."Jimmie Rodgers' Dream"John, Taupin, T Bone Burnett 3:42
7."There's No Tomorrow"John, Russell, Burnett, James Timothy Shaw 3:45
8."Monkey Suit"John, Taupin4:46
9."The Best Part of the Day"John, Taupin4:45
10."A Dream Come True"John, Russell5:07
11."I Should Have Sent Roses"Russell, Taupin5:21
12."When Love Is Dying"John, Taupin4:51
13."My Kind of Hell" (Bonus track on iTunes Digital Deluxe LP, Deluxe CD and vinyl only)John, Taupin3:16
14."Mandalay Again" (Bonus track on Deluxe CD and vinyl only)John, Taupin4:54
15."Never Too Old (To Hold Somebody)"John, Taupin4:58
16."In the Hands of Angels"Russell4:43

Personnel

Production

Reception

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic 76/100 [3]
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svgStar empty.svg [4]
Clash Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svgStar empty.svg [5]
Consequence of Sound Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [6]
Contactmusic.com Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [7]
Daily Mirror Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [8]
Financial Times Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [9]
The Guardian Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [10]
The Independent Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svg [11]
Los Angeles Times Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [12]
Rolling Stone Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svg [13]
Uncut Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg

The Union received mostly positive reviews with critics praising it as some of the pair's best work to date. It reached No. 3 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 30 Best Albums of 2010. [14]

Charts

ChartPeak
Australia28
Austria28
Belgium (Fl.)66
Brazil7
Canada7
Croatia46
Denmark15
Europe19
France51
Germany23
Greece61
Ireland52
Israel5
Italy28
Netherlands60
New Zealand24
Norway5
Russia15
Spain30
Sweden24
Switzerland27
UK12
US Billboard 200 3 [15]

Grammy Awards

YearNominee / workAwardResult
2011 "If It Wasn't for Bad" Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals [16] Nominated

Certifications

CountryProvider Certification
United Kingdom BPI Silver (60,000)
Canada CRIA Gold (40,000)

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References

  1. "The 30 Best Albums of 2010". Rolling Stone (25 December 2010). Retrieved 18 January 2011
  2. Nick DeRiso, Elton John and Leon Russell’s The Union was marked by this bittersweet sense of loss, Oct. 20, 2015
  3. "Critic Reviews for The Union". Metacritic. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  4. Stephen Thomas Erlewine (19 October 2010). "The Union - Elton John,Leon Russell | Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  5. "Elton John And Leon Russell – The Union | Clash Music Latest Album Review". Clashmusic.com. 25 October 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  6. "Album Review: Elton John and Leon Russell – The Union « Consequence of Sound". Consequenceofsound.net. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  7. "Elton John – The Union (feat Leon Russell) Album Review". Contactmusic.com. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  8. "Elton John & Leon Russell – The Union: Album review". Daily Mirror. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  9. "/ Arts / Music – Elton John and Leon Russell: The Union". Ft.com. 22 October 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  10. Alexis Petridis (21 October 2010). "Elton John and Leon Russell: The Union – review | Music". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  11. "Album: Elton John & Leon Russell, Union (Mercury) – Reviews, Music". The Independent. London. 22 October 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  12. "Album review: Elton John and Leon Russell's 'The Union' | Pop & Hiss | Los Angeles Times". Latimesblogs.latimes.com. 19 October 2010. p. m. Retrieved 1 December 2010.
  13. David Fricke (12 October 2010). "The Union | Album Reviews". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  14. "30 Best Albums of 2010: Elton John and Leon Russell, The Union". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 7 January 2012.
  15. billboard.com, The Union (Elton John and Leon Russell album)
  16. "GRAMMY Rewind: 53rd Annual GRAMMY Awards". Los Angeles Times . 5 January 1996. Retrieved 24 January 2013.