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on 16 June 2012
My first reaction to this new line of Rufus' was: hmm, liked the old Rufus better. Then I caught myself playing the CD over and over again. I had to think of an interview with Ringo Starr in the seventies I once read, in which he was asked what he thought of his estranged pal Paul's new effort 'Venus and Mars'. His first response was 'not great' and then a moment later walking down the street or so he found himself whistling a tune of it over and over again. 'Out of the Game' is a great record. There is undiluted old Rufus here too, 'Montauk', 'Song for you', 'Candles' for example. But he has clearly set out to broaden his appeal, inviting Mark Ronson as producer and going for dance music, music that befits Top 40 Radio. The first three songs 'Out of the Game', 'Jericho' and 'Rashida' is an irresistible, triumphant trio of songs. Philly Soul comes to mind in 'Bitter Tears', 'Welcome to the Ball.' This is Rufus too. He has merely harnassed his talent, directed it differently. I imagine he has seen a club or two in his wilder days, so making dance music is not alien to his core. His talent as a composer and musician is so vast, he can adopt many guises and still be Rufus. And if I suddenly hanker for wall to wall undiluted old Rufus, the composer of pop 'lieder', 'Lulu' has not ceased to exist.
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VINE VOICETOP 500 REVIEWERon 1 January 2013
I have to admit that, prior to this album, my faith in Rufus Wainwright had been shaken a little. His previous studio album, All Days Are Nights: Songs For Lulu, an album for piano and vocals proved to be very difficult to get into and, in the end, left me a little cold. I haven't heard or seen his opera Prima Donna, but was starting to get concerned that the Rufus Wainwright I fell in love with had gone forever, leaving an artist solely concerned with the highbrow artistic pursuits. Very noble and all that, but I honestly believe that his contemporary albums, with all of the literary and musical influences in tact, truly play to all of his strengths. It was, then, with great relief that I heard that his latest album was going to be a "pop" album, although my heart sank a little when I also heard that he was working with Mark Ronson. How good could a Mark Ronson-produced Rufus album possibly be?

It turns out that it's utterly magnificent and quite simply the best thing he's done since 2007's Release The Stars - perhaps even better. The whole album certainly does have a popular sheen to it, but Ronson's slick production values, coupled with Wainwright's artistic integrity proves to be a brilliantly winning combination. The songs are extremely strong with one stunner following another. The opening trio of songs, Out Of The Game, Jericho and Rachida are perfect, intelligent alternative pop, with the latter two having a few moments so great that the hairs on the back of your neck stand up in appreciation. Montauk is a beautiful insight into Rufus' family life, Bitter Tears virtually invents a new genre: baroque disco, Respectable Dive reminds me of something Rufus' friend and band mate, Teddy Thompson would write and Perfect Man is one of the catchiest compositions Rufus has ever penned. He saves two of the best for last, as Song For You is a heavenly song with a magnificent vocal to match and Candles, an absolutely gorgeous song, finishes Out Of The Game on a real high.

This may very well be the most mainstream album Rufus Wainwright puts his name to, but it's not too far away from the Want or Release The Stars albums so you won't feel as if it's a massive change of direction or, perish the thought, that he's sold out. This album will move you, bring tears to your eyes, make you smile, make you move your body, make you fall in love with Rufus Wainwright all over again. I'm just sorry I ever doubted him.
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on 27 July 2012
Absolutely fell in love at first sight with Rufus, he woke me up from a very deep sleep and when I opened my eyes, he was on TV, singing, I was totally captured by his voice and passion! That was a few years ago, I can't say I liked all the songs on his previous albums but this one is really fantastic, I have been singing along for days now, I just can't stop listening to his lyrics and his stunning voice. These songs are really hard to sing, he sings with so much abandon, he opens his heart and lets us in! And what a cute smile! (yes, yes, I know he is...never mind hey!)
Well done Rufus for a stunning piece of music and for singing what I want to hear, have you actually written some of the songs for me?? I love Jericho! Bravo! :)
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on 10 May 2012
It's great to have Rufus back with a new pop album, after the Garland concert folly and the cathartic Lulu project. Out of the Game is easily his strongest set since the two Wants. If the lead single didn't grab you, don't be deterred - the record just gets better and better from track 2, the Ronson collaboration clearly giving fresh vim to his songwriting and vocal performance. This is an album that combines delightful surface with real emotional weight - the kind that has endless replayability. The many highlights include `Rashida', `Montauk' and `Perfect Man'; however, it doesn't get better than the epic, swoonsome build of `Song of You', which stands with `Dinner at Eight' and `The Art Teacher' as a knockout Rufus classic.
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on 7 September 2013
I'm a big rufus fan but i still think that he has yet to make a great album, they always seem to be let down by a few really dull songs. Rufus' first 3 albums had some awesome material and want 2 has some real growers on it however in spite of it's initial critical impressions, i think release the stars is a pretty poor offering. all days are nights won me back a little however the songs rufus added from other projects brought that album down a little, but it's good to see that rufus is making a slow return to the form of his first three albums as out of the game is a very fresh release with some great melodies. The first three songs are instant winners and songs such as sometimes you need, montauk and bitter tears are sure to become fan favourites too however in some places the ronson production does come out a little cheesy (Barbara, song of you) but on the whole this is rufus' best since want 2 i'd say, great stuff!
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on 7 May 2012
Great album, but very disappointed not to find WWIII on there. My fault for not reading the iTunes page correctly, where it is a free download *if* you download the album. For a sad traditionalist as myself, who wanted the disc in his hand to play in the car, once ripped onto iTunes, this is rather annoying.

But yes, great album and a rare talent.
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on 8 March 2014
Had this on my wish list for sometime, based on reviews and the fact that I loved Release the Stars, but, for me it is not his best and am still trying to get into it. Just too many melancholy tracks and not enough variety. Sorry Rufus!
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on 25 February 2017
Love this album. What more can I say?
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on 30 June 2012
What a great CD from Rufus,"Out Of The Game" is one hell of a album, the Title track instantly grabs you, by play 3 of the album, you are hooked, as the tunes just get stuck in your brain.

Lovers of Billy Joel music should check this out, as at times Rufus almost sounds like the man himself (Not The Uptown Girl Billy Joel I may add).

This is personally so far Rufus Wainwrights best CD yet IMO
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on 23 May 2012
Back on form with this album, first few listens as always you think its not up to his previous, but now both my wife and I are singing the songs round the house, and looking forward to his Bath concert. Favourite tracks Rashida and respectable dive. Shame I cant persuade my freinds to give Rufus a try,they are missing out.
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