Never one to shy away from a challenge, Rufus Wainwright returns with possibly his most ambitious project to date. Collaborating with a whole host of famous names including Carrie Fisher, William Shatner, Florence Welch and even his sister Martha Wainwright, 'Take All My Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets' aims to combine the lyrical poetry of William Shakespeare's sonnets and put them against a backdrop of atmospheric compositions.
Though all the sonnets are spoken word verbatim, it is in the music where we get to see Wainwright's influence. Shakespeare and music has never been a natural fit as the writer never pursued that path so the avenue to create a new soundtrack to his work is almost limitless, and it seems Wainwright understands this very well. Cutting up the sonnets with a whole host of musical directions that include opera, rock and even his own whimsical experimentation, 'Take All My Loves: 9 Shakespeare Sonnets' makes for a diverse but not altogether easy to listen to release.
The main problem with this dynamic is it's too surprising for its own good. Just when you think you've got a handle on it, it moves at such a tangent, it almost becomes jarring. Individually, each work is brilliant but bring it all together, and it's a little too messy.