Last fall, Rufus Wainwright released a new track, “Trouble In Paradise,” to serve as a teaser for his first pop album since 2012’s Out Of The Game. Now he’s formally announcing that album, which is called Unfollow The Rules and will be out in April. The album was produced by Mitchell Froom around a handful of Los Angeles studios, and Wainwright has some pretty big ambitions for his new release.
“What I would like this album to symbolize is a coming together of all the aspects of my life which have made me a seasoned artist,” he said in a press release. “My aim is to emulate the greats of yore whose second acts produced their finest work — Leonard Cohen when he made The Future, when Sinatra became Sinatra in his 40s, when Paul Simon put out Graceland. Pop music isn’t always about your waistline. Many songwriters improve with age. I’m flying the flag for staying alive!”
Today, he’s sharing a new single called “Damsel In Distress,” which he says was inspired by Joni Mitchell:
“Damsel In Distress” is an homage to Joni Mitchell in some ways. Particularly the structure. My husband and I now live in Laurel Canyon. I wasn’t that familiar with Joni’s music but Jörn became obsessed and took me on a journey into her music. We ended up hanging out with her and I get now why she’s one of the greats. So it’s part Laurel Canyon, part a song about a personal relationship that I’m trying to come to terms with, but mostly my Mitchell virginity being broken.
01 “Trouble in Paradise”
02 “Damsel In Distress”
03 “Unfollow The Rules”
04 “You Ain’t Big”
05 “Romantical Man”
06 “Peaceful Afternoon”
07 “Only The People That Love”
08 “This One’s For The Ladies (That Lunge)”
09 “My Little You”
10 “Early Morning Madness”
12 “Alone Time”
Unfollow The Rules is out 4/24 via BMG. Pre-order it here.