No, you are not going to hear Lady Gaga performing a duet with Sir Elton John on this soundtrack. You may have heard about the new song “Hello Hello” John wrote for the animated feature, and how the knighted singer had asked Gaga to join him for the song. What you are going to get here is his solo version – but that’s perfectly fine with us because the rest of the album is, well, still music to the ears.
Featuring music by John, Portuguese Canadian singer songwriter Nelly Furtado (she performs a new version of “Crocodile Rock”), Kiki Dee (she performs the beloved duet “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” with John) and selections from the score composed by Chris P. Bacon and James Newtown Howard, this 60 minute album is, like the Kelly Asbury directed film, one fun family affair.
Fans of the English singer/ composer/ pianist will love the inclusion of hits like “Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting”, “Your Song”, “Rocket Man”, “Tiny Dancer” and “Bennie and the Jets”. While we are assuming that this group of fans is of a certain demographic, younger listeners will find out for themselves why the celebrated award winning artist is well loved worldwide. Originally a tenor during his earlier performing days, John now sings in baritone – uninitiated fans would be glad to hear that this album’s collection of songs showcases both styles.
Besides “Hello Hello”, the other new song John wrote for the animated film is the somewhat melancholically romantic “Love Builds a Garden”, a tune which is very apt for the film’s garden gnomes.
There are only four score tracks on the album, and those who are familiar with Newton Howard’s (Water for Elephants) works would be hungry for more. Using themes from John’s music, the 17 minutes of score co composed with P. Bacon (Source Code) isn’t groundbreaking material, but it makes for a pleasant listen any time of the day.
Recommended Track: (1) Hello Hello (Album Version)
Reviewed by John Li
Posted on 3 May 2011