Two Hearts (Men at Work album)
|Studio album by Men at Work|
|Released||April 23, 1985|
|Recorded||September 1984 – February 1985 at Fast Forward Studios, Melbourne|
|Producer||Colin Hay, Greg Ham|
|Men at Work chronology|
|Singles from Two Hearts|
Two Hearts is the third and final studio album by Australian group Men at Work, released on April 23, 1985. It is currently out of print. Drummer Jerry Speiser and bassist John Rees had left the band prior to the album's production, while guitarist Ron Strykert left the band during recording sessions. Touring behind the album saw sole remaining members Colin Hay and Greg Ham joined by guest musicians.
During 1984 the band took a break as members pursued other interests. Upon reconvening later that year, tensions during rehearsals between Hay and Speiser over songwriting and the band's management led to a split in the band. Both Rees and Speiser were told they were "not required", as Hay, Ham and Strykert used session musicians in their stead: primarily Jeremy Alsop on bass guitar (ex-Ram Band, Pyramid, Broderick Smith) and Mark Kennedy on drums (Spectrum, Ayers Rock, Marcia Hines). Strykert, though credited as a full band member on the finished album, left the group shortly before the album sessions ended, appearing on eight of the ten tracks.
Two Hearts was produced by Hay and Ham. It was a critical and commercial failure compared to their previous albums. It peaked at No. 16 in Australia, and No. 50 on the US chart. Four tracks were released as singles, "Everything I Need" (May 1985), "Man with Two Hearts", "Maria" (August), and "Hard Luck Story" (October); only the lead single charted in Australia (No. 37) and the US (No. 47). The album relied heavily on drum machines and synthesisers, and reduced the presence of Ham's saxophone, giving it a different feel compared to its predecessors.
Two Hearts received poor reviews upon its release. In a brief retrospective review, Allmusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine called it "a bland, synthesized variation on mainstream pop, featuring none of the melodic sensibilities or subtle humor of their first two albums."
Hay and Ham hired new band mates to tour in support of Two Hearts, with Alsop and Kennedy joined by James Black on guitar and keyboards (Mondo Rock, The Black Sorrows). Soon after a third guitarist, Colin Bayley (Mi-Sex), was added and Kennedy was replaced on drums by Chad Wackerman (Frank Zappa). Australian singers Kate Ceberano and Renée Geyer had also worked on the album and performed live as guest vocalists. On 13 July 1985 Men at Work performed three tracks for the Oz for Africa concert (part of the global Live Aid program)—"Maria", "Overkill", and an unreleased one, "The Longest Night". They were broadcast in Australia (on both Seven Network and Nine Network) and on MTV in the US. "Maria" and "Overkill" were also broadcast by American Broadcasting Company (ABC) during their Live Aid telecast. Ham left during the band's time touring behind the album. The final Men at Work performances during 1985 had jazz saxophonist Paul Williamson (The Black Sorrows), replacing Ham. By early 1986 the band was defunct and Hay started recording his first solo album, Looking for Jack (January 1987), which had Alsop and Wackerman as session musicians.
|1.||"Man with Two Hearts"||Colin Hay||3:56|
|2.||"Giving Up"||Greg Ham||3:27|
|3.||"Everything I Need"||Hay||3:35|
|4.||"Sail to You"||Hay, Ron Strykert, Ham||3:25|
|5.||"Children on Parade"||Hay||3:37|
|7.||"Stay at Home"||Ham||3:07|
|8.||"Hard Luck Story"||Hay||3:43|
|9.||"Snakes and Ladders"||Ham||3:17|
- Men at Work
- Greg Ham - keyboards; saxophone; drum programming on "Giving Up", "Snakes and Ladders", and "Still Life"; lead vocals on "Giving Up", "Stay at Home", and "Still Life"; backing vocals on "Everything I Need"
- Colin Hay - acoustic guitar; electric guitar (except on "Sail to You", "Hard Luck Story", and "Still Life"); drum programming (except on "Snakes and Ladders" and "Still Life"); lead vocals (except on "Giving Up", "Stay at Home", and "Still Life"); backing vocals; additional keyboards and marimba on "Man With Two Hearts"; electric sitar on "Maria"; bass and piano on "Hard Luck Story"; drums on "Everything I Need" and "Hard Luck Story"
- Ron Strykert - electric and steel guitars (except on "Everything I Need" and "Snakes and Ladders"); acoustic guitar on "Maria"; bass on "Man With Two Hearts"
- Jeremy Alsop - bass (except on "Man With Two Hearts", "Everything I Need", and "Hard Luck Story")
- James Black - guitar on "Snakes and Ladders"
- George Butrumlis - piano accordion on "Maria"
- Kate Ceberano - backing vocals on "Giving Up" and "Stay at Home"
- Phil Colson - slide guitar on "Everything I Need"
- Paul Gadsby - bass on "Everything I Need"
- Renée Geyer - lead vocal on "Maria"
- J.J. Hacket - drums and percussion on "Maria"
- Mark Kennedy - percussion; drums on "Man With Two Hearts", "Giving Up", "Sail to You", and "Stay at Home"
- Colin Hay, Greg Ham - Producers
- Russell Depeller - Management
- Colin Hay, Greg Ham, Bob Clearmountain - Mixing, except "Children on Parade"
- Tim Kramer, Colin Hay, Greg Ham - Mixing, "Children on Parade"
Album - Billboard (United States)
|1985||Top Pop Albums||50|
Singles - Billboard (United States)
|1985||"Everything I Need"||Mainstream Rock Tracks||28|
|1985||"Everything I Need"||The Billboard Hot 100||47|
- Feely, Marty. "June Hot Album Releases." Billboard 01 June 1985: 74. Print.
- Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Two Hearts – Men at Work". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 August 2014.