While his previous couple of albums found former solo folkie Loudon Wainwright expanding to full-band backing, Unrequited features his most elaborate production up to that time. "Sweet Nothings" bears an ironic disco groove. "The Lowly Tourist" offers up a reggae pastiche, while "Kings and Queens" takes a country stroll, and "Whatever Happened to Us" could be an outtake by The Band if not for the acerbic lyrics. But the second half of the album is the polar opposite of the first -- it consists of tunes from a 1974 live solo show at New York's legendary Bottom Line. Not only does the stripped-down sound provide crucial contrast to the studio tracks, it suits the subtleties of Wainwright's songwriting and the spontaneity of his performance style. He satirizes spiritual leaders on "Guru," plays a deceptively unrepentant cad on the Randy Newman-worthy "Mr. Guilty," and lampoons the histrionics of heartbreak on the title tune," winning the audience over with every lyrical barb. He even gets laughs out of infant son (and future star) Rufus's breastfeeding on the uproarious "Rufus Is a Tit Man."

Release Date:
January 1, 1975
Produced by:
Loudon Wainwright III, Mark Harmon, Milton Kramer & Bruce Dickinson (1998 CD reissue)
Track Listing
  1. Sweet Nothings - 2:47
  2. The Lowly Tourist - 3:28
  3. Kings and Queens - 2:21
  4. Kick in the Head - 2:49
  5. Whatever Happened To Us - 2:02
  6. Crime of Passion - 3:01
  7. Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder - 2:28
  8. On the Rocks - 3:15
  9. Guru - 2:16
  10. Mr. Guilty - 3:25
  11. The Untitled - 2:58
  12. Unrequited to the Nth Degree - 3:59
  13. Old Friend - 2:53
  14. Rufus Is a Tit Man - 2:28
  15. Rufus Is a Tit Man (Alternate Version) - 2:59*
  16. Over the Hill - 2:50*
  17. Hollywood Hopeful - 2:39*

*Bonus tracks