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    Rufus Wainwright

    release the stars

    Release The Stars( 2007 )
    Do I Disappoint You / Going To A Town / Tiergarten / Nobody's Off The Hook / Between My Legs / Rules And Regulations / Not Ready To Love / Slideshow / Tulsa / Leaving For Paris / Sanssouci / Release The Stars

    I'm fairly new to Rufus at the time of writing. I saw him last night on Jonathon Ross and when I get round to reviewing all his catalogue, this comment won't make sense. This is my first exposure to Rufus and was written on the 12th of May, 2007, four days before I turn 33. I've seen footage of him singing Judy Garland and have long admired his voice. 'Do I Disappoint You' is full of a suitable amount of drama over which his voice sails as if he's stood on a moutaintop trying to be heard across the sea crashing against rocks. The strings are absolutely beautiful and long-term readers of this site will know I like my string sections, even if i'm famously lukewarm about classical music as such. I stay out of those kind of arguments. I prefer orchestral pop to Beethoven and Rufus Wainwright does damn fine orchestral pop music with suitable crescendo's and everything else you could wish for. The title track combines Rufus's love for musicals with a brass instrument, a knowing smile and much drama, of course. He's taken five albums to hopefully start selling lots of records, lord knows he deserves to. 'Not Ready To Love' starts all Thom Yorke in his 'Bends' era, sweeter voice. It's a gorgeous, slow moving ballad. If you scan the feature 'Ten Reviews' in the news and features section of the site, this next comment will make sense to you. 'Rules And Regulations' is about the fortieth song i've reviewed this afternoon and i'm still hoping all the different bits will form whole and wholly readable individual album reviews. I like the trumpet on this track, by the way and I realise none of the tracks on the album are especially weak, clearly a good thing. Go Rufus, go. 'All my life I have wanted.... to roam' he sings, utterly beautifully.

    I recognise a Beach Boys influence a mile off. The beginning of 'Tiergarten' has that Beach Boys 'Pet Sounds' rhythm. Slow and beautifully spiritual. His voice suddenly reminds me of Ron Sexsmith, props to Ron Sexsmith really. 'Between My Legs' is a song that's a little funky but if you're heterosexual, you don't really want to be thinking what's between the guys legs, really! With Rufus, it seems influences can be bandied about all over the place, but none of them quite do justice to the man. 'Between My Legs' has everything including the proverbial kichen sink production and comes out smiling as the best uptempo tune here, even with a borrowed melodic strand here and there. We don't mind too much when the guy sounds quite as happy as he does here. Varied with the ballads, another beautiful, classy piano tune arrives with 'Leaving For Paris No 2' for example and you have a sterling album work that's repeat playable and constantly wins over admirers. Well, at least in our house. Everybody that's heard it, Rufus fan or not, has been won over. I hope in the wider world the reaction is similar to that.

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    this page last updated 12/05/07



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