Trafalgar is the Bee Gees' ninth album (seventh internationally), released in September 1971 in the US, and November 1971 in the UK. The album was a moderate hit in the United States, and peaked at No. 34. The lead single "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart?" was the first Bee Gees' No. 1 single in the United States but failed to chart in Britain as did the album. "Don't Wanna Live Inside Myself" was released as the second single and only reached No. 57 on the USA charts. "Israel" was only released in the Netherlands and reached No. 22. Trafalgar is noted in Robert Dimery's book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.
In December 1970, just after two months before the group recorded their last session for the 2 Years On album, they recorded "Together", "Over the Hill and Over the Mountain", "Merrily Merry Eyes" and "When Do I". On January 11, 1971, Maurice Gibb contributed writing, producing and play guitar on Lulu's 1971 single "Everybody Clap" with Jack Bruce of Cream and Maurice's friend, John Bonham of Led Zeppelin on drums.
The group also did the 2 Years On Tour to support their album and they returned to the studio with new band members guitarist Alan Kendall, who remained as lead guitarist with the Bee Gees until their final album in 2001. Although the Gibb Brothers had reunited in 1970, they were still working separately as evident in the writing credits. Several songs were recorded around this time, many of which have never officially been released. All of the songs chosen for release were ballads, which gives the album something of a concept feeling. The group started to record for this album on 28 January 1971 when they recorded "We Lost the Road", "When Do I" and "How Can You Mend a Broken Heart" ("We Lost the Road" was not included on this album and released in 1972 on their next album). Recording continued through April with several demos and outtakes recorded but never released.