Title - 'The Sound of Bacharach & David' (Cherry Pop)
Artist - Hazell Dean
Now, I have to say I've loved everything that this lady has ever put out. And as far as I'd assumed all these years, they had all been Hi-NRG albums. Dancefloor smashes and songs written for others in the same musical ilk.
But then Cherry Red send me this delightful album and wow, did it change everything I thought I knew about her! Funnily enough I've interviewed her (2011), I've run into her at a radio show event in London (circa @ 1985) and yet we never discussed this album.
And here's why. It was originally a promo-only LP (remember those?!) recorded in 1974 BUT actually released to the press back in 1981 by Carlin Music Corporation. Featuring classic songs by songwriters Burt Bacharach and Hal David, of course, and produced by Paul Curtis, The Sound of Bacharach & David contains the same songs as Hazel Dean sings Bacharach & David, but with a different track order.
Confused? Please don't be, for first-time-on-CD anywhere release has been mastered by a vinyl restoration expert using all the latest techniques to ensure the best possible sound. The original master tapes are long since lost, obviously, but the musical quality of a young; oh so young Dean is there to lovingly behold on each and every track, trust me.
I mean, sure the album features Bacharach & David's best loved tracks, such as 'What The World Needs Now Is Love,' ‘I Just Don't Know What To Do With Myself,' ‘Walk On By,' ‘Close To You’ and even ‘Trains & Boats & Planes.' But it's truly hard to explain just how crisp, how clear her vocal tones are here.
A true Queen of the aforementioned Hi-NRG scene back in the '80s and early '90s, Essex (UK)-born Hazell Dean found mainstream success in 1984 with the #6 hit ‘Searchin’ (Gotta Find A Man)’ on the Proto label. The Stock Aitken Waterman-produced follow-up, ‘Whatever I Do (Wherever I Go)’, reached #4, giving the Hit Factory team their first Top Ten single and marking the beginning of a partnership with Hazell which continued until 1991.
Dean continued to release other albums, and still does today in a more limited capacity, but this is one TRUE musical highlight that flew so far under the radar that I can well assume most everyone associated with it - even Dean herself - never even believed that it would/could ever see the light of day again.
The extensive booklet features a complete discography and features rare photographs of Hazell from the period. The CD booklet features the original sleeve and the actual sleeve notes have been written by Hazell Dean herself.
1. 'YOU'LL NEVER GET TO HEAVEN'
2. 'TO WAIT FOR LOVE'
3. '(THERE'S ALWAYS) SOMETHING THERE TO REMIND ME'
4. 'I JUST DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH MYSELF'
5. 'WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS NOW IS LOVE'
6. 'TRAINS & BOATS & PLANES'
7. 'ANYONE WHO HAD A HEART'
8. 'WALK ON BY'
9. 'WISHIN' AND HOPIN'
10. 'CLOSE TO YOU'
11. 'MESSAGE TO MICHAEL'
CD Purchase Link