Rufus Wainwright dropped the wistful “Alone Time,” the final track on his upcoming album, Unfollow the Rules, out July 10th via BMG.
The song is accompanied by an animated clip, as handwritten lyrics take a dreamy adventure through a window and out into the world — passing flowers, cars, and rainy skies. “I need a little alone time/A little dream time,” Wainwright sings across fleeting piano chords. “Don’t worry, I will be back, baby.”
The clip was created by Josh Shaffner and features illustrations by the animator and Wainwright. The musician describes the track as “an old-school record that attempts to take the listener on a rich journey through the myriad experiences of this thing we call ‘life,’ ” he said. “It is my belief that with everyone and everything, ultimately, all conclusions are about solitude and the acceptance of that fact, and that often this is a very beautiful realization.”
“But today, in these dark times, I’m thinking a lot about the thousands of people who, due to COVID-19, are forced to experience intense isolation at the end of their days in order to save others, and the incredible fear that that must entail,” he continued. “This track is humbly dedicated to them; it is a wish of hope and a prayer for grace that they feel some sense of joy and comfort in knowing they are performing such an incredible act of sacrifice for humanity.”
“Alone Time” follows the singles “Trouble in Paradise” and “Damsel in Distress,” the latter a tribute to Joni Mitchell. Unfollow the Rules is Wainwright’s first pop record since 2012’s Out of the Game.
Wainwright has been in quarantine at home in Los Angeles, performing daily on his Instagram account. On Thursday, he joined Cyndi Lauper, Troye Sivan, and others for a livestream concert supporting the LGBTQ nightlife industry affected by the coronavirus pandemic. It was organized by Stonewall Inn’s charity, the Stonewall Gives Back Initiative.