- Side one
- “Breaking Down Barriers” (John, Gary Osborne) – 4:42
- “Heart in the Right Place” (John, Osborne) – 5:15*
- “Just Like Belgium” (John, Bernie Taupin)– 4:10
- “Nobody Wins” (Jean-Paul Dreau, Osborne) – 3:40
- “Fascist Faces” (John, Taupin) – 5:12
- Side two
- “Carla/Etude” (John) – 4:46*
- “Fanfare” (John, James Newton Howard) – 1:26*
- “Chloe” (John, Osborne) – 4:40*
- “Heels of the Wind” (John, Taupin) – 3:35
- “Elton’s Song” (John, Tom Robinson) – 3:02*
- “The Fox” (John, Taupin) – 5:20
The Fox is the twenty-first album (the fifteenth in the studio) by the British artist Elton John, published May 20, 1981.
The LP, recorded in several studios (Superbear Studios, Nice, Sunset Sound, Los Angeles, Wessex Studios, London, Village Recorders, Los Angeles, EMI Studios, Abbey Road, London), underwent a troubled work: first produced by Elton and by Clive Franks, is rejected by the American label MCA Records that judges little commercial: it is so distributed in the US by Geffen Records after recording more tracks to a new producer, Chris Thomas, in a (vain) attempt to make it more appealing to public.
The artistic result is remarkable: pieces such as the impressive orchestral suite Carla Etude / Fanfare / Chloe, the Elton’s Song ballad, the blues rock of Heart in the Right Place and the pop rock of Nobody Wins and Just Like Belgium have impressed the critical attention. The Fox was instead definitely a flop from a strictly commercial point of view: including a few, barely reached a # 21 USA and an English # 12. The video clip of Elton’s Song (song recorded during the sessions of the previous LP 21 at 33, along with Heart in the Right Place and Chloe) was also censored in many countries because of its contents (it dealt clearly with homosexuality). Individuals Nobody Wins, Chloe and Just Like Belgium also had little feedback. In a 1999 concert at Leeds Castle, Elton made it clear how negatively the album was received in his homeland.
In some CD versions, there are 10 tracks in all (Chloe is separated from Carla Etude and Fanfare), while in the French version of the record Nobody Wins is replaced by J’veux de la Tendresse. The latter, a song composed by Jean-Paul Dreau, was liked by Elton, who had made a cover in French: Gary Osborne then wrote a different text in English, and gave birth to Nobody Wins.