Tom Waits - Real Gone

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Dying to know if anyone's heard this yet. Or, if not, here is the place for anticipation.

Mmmm, scratching.

Simon H., Saturday, 17 July 2004 22:56 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I heard this is going to be a return to the blues'n'country stuff of Mule Variations. I hope not.

dog latin (dog latin), Sunday, 18 July 2004 21:06 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Oh come on, you've got to get behind the mule.

Gribowitz (Lynskey), Sunday, 18 July 2004 21:52 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

that was a dog of a song. the only ones i liked on that were "what's he building" and "come on up to the house". as far as i'm concerned it's his only low point since the 1983 turnaround.

dog latin (dog latin), Sunday, 18 July 2004 22:51 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"cold water" is immense, no?

jed_ (jed), Sunday, 18 July 2004 23:49 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

they's scratchin on mule v.

bowers, Monday, 19 July 2004 16:04 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Why do all the press releases say it's Marc Ribot's first collaboration with TW since Rain Dogs? He's on tunes on Bone Machine and Mule Variations, right?

Jordan (Jordan), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 00:38 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I think he was on tour with him for mule variations when i saw him live, too.

M@tt He1geson (Matt Helgeson), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 00:40 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Any chance of a UK tour at all?

Stewart Osborne (Stewart Osborne), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 08:43 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

yes please.

dog latin (dog latin), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 10:46 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I've heard that Waits'll be beatboxing on the album. Or adding, more accurately, 'his own brand of vocal percussion.' Any confirmation?

j e r e m y (x Jeremy), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 11:00 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I heard he's learning how to breakdance.

dog latin (dog latin), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 11:01 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

From Billboard:

Known for refusing to conform to any style or structure, Waits is said to have combined everything from funk and Jamaican rhythms to urban and rural blues on "Real Gone." The set features such cuts as the comic, funky and instructional "Metropolitan Guide," the R&B/hip-hop inspired "To of the Hill" (featuring vocal percussion supplied by Waits) and the rock-steady groover "Sins of the Father.

No word on the breakdancing yet.

j e r e m y (x Jeremy), Tuesday, 20 July 2004 11:15 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
An intriguing (p)review.

Stewart Osborne (Stewart Osborne), Friday, 20 August 2004 09:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

That sounds awesome.

The Lex (The Lex), Friday, 20 August 2004 09:34 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

oh yes indeed.

jed_ (jed), Friday, 20 August 2004 10:17 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

It comes out the day before my birthday! Yippee!

dog latin (dog latin), Friday, 20 August 2004 10:18 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

and five days after mine! yippee!

er, no - 33 FUCK!

jed_ (jed), Friday, 20 August 2004 11:34 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I've heard that Waits'll be beatboxing on the album. Or adding, more accurately, 'his own brand of vocal percussion.' Any confirmation?

-- j e r e m y

That's a 10-4. He does these pseudo-beatbox rhythms all over the place. It's a little weird, actually, because he uses the same technique on almost half the songs. But it sounds v. cool.

Mark (MarkR), Friday, 20 August 2004 12:40 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i'm trying to image what this "beatboxing" will sound like - all i can think of is the beginning to "big in japan"

dyson (dyson), Friday, 20 August 2004 13:59 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

hmmm....sounds interesting, but i worry that dyson's right about the big in japan thing, I never really dug that song too much.

M@tt He1geson (Matt Helgeson), Friday, 20 August 2004 14:03 (fourteen years ago) Permalink


Closer to jazz scat than beatbox, except that the same phrase repeats over and over.

Mark (MarkR), Friday, 20 August 2004 14:09 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

This is the only thing I'm anticipating right now.

adam. (nordicskilla), Friday, 20 August 2004 14:48 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

me too. It sounds like it's going to be really good. i'm worried it might go the 6-minute blues direction of mule variations though...

dog latin (dog latin), Saturday, 21 August 2004 11:19 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

oh i never liked that song "Big in Japan" either.

jed_ (jed), Saturday, 21 August 2004 11:21 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Me either. This album is better than Mule Variations; less blues, more rock.

Mark (MarkR), Saturday, 21 August 2004 11:39 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

But songs lengths are definitely still a problem.

Mark (MarkR), Saturday, 21 August 2004 11:40 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Bjork and Tom Waits back 2 back.
Paula Cole had something to do with this i think.

Forksclovetofu (Forksclovetofu), Sunday, 22 August 2004 05:53 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I rate the Tom Waits albums I own out of 10:

Closing TIme: 3
Nighthawks at the Diner: 5
Small Change: 6
Swordfishtrombones: 9
Rain Dogs: 10
Frank's Wild Years: 8
Big Time: 4
The Black Rider: 8
Bone Machine: 6
Alice: 6
Blood Money: 9

dog latin (dog latin), Sunday, 22 August 2004 10:38 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

and then i kill you

AaronHz (AaronHz), Sunday, 22 August 2004 10:40 (fourteen years ago) Permalink


*falls over dead*

dog latin (dog latin), Sunday, 22 August 2004 10:41 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I mean I'm gonna restrain myself from declaring a full on Waits fanboy fatwa on you, but only a 6 for Bone Machine? Surely you jest.

AaronHz (AaronHz), Sunday, 22 August 2004 10:48 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

exactly what i was gonna say - have another listen DL, bone machine is incredible.

jed_ (jed), Sunday, 22 August 2004 12:28 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I would rate Alice and Blood Money exactly opposite. Bone Machine would be a 10 for me.

Jim Reckling (Jim Reckling), Sunday, 22 August 2004 12:41 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

no way nohow do i rank blood money over frank's wild years, closing time, or alice (my top three waits)(maybe)(fuckit My Top Three Waits).

cinniblount (James Blount), Sunday, 22 August 2004 12:51 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i will buy any waits any time.

kirsten abbot, Sunday, 22 August 2004 13:24 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

bone machine is a tenner, definitely. as is nighthawks. dog latin's ratings are totally off the mark. i also never understood the appeal of swordfishtrombones.

alex in mainhattan (alex63), Sunday, 22 August 2004 13:52 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I Like Bone Machine just fine. Remember, I'm working on a scale of 10 being perfect, five being average/good, zero being bad. I like Alice too, but I found it maybe a bit too eerie - I appreciate the moods and subtleties but it frightens me to the core. Blood Money is also quite a disturbed album but more full on and spiteful than creepy. It has two of Waits's best ballads (Coney Island Baby, All The World Is Green) and as for Starving in the Belly of a Whale, well it's one of his best songs.

Swordfishtrombones is a little better than Franks Wild Years - the Mr Rogers-drowning-in-bourbon of "In The Neighbourhood", the twilight subterranea of "Underground" and "Shore Leave", two very affectionate instrumentals, whimsical piano ballads like "Soldier's Things" and "Johnsburg, Illinois". It's all good and it's as if Tom's character has gone through being a debauched bar-propper to the verge of insanity. He sounds like a shell-shocked veteran, the musical equivalent of the town drunk - frightening, sad, funny, moronic at points but with a twinkle of magic in his eye - on the surface, a madman but with a certain spark of twisted genius.

Maybe I should have given Nighthawks and Small Change slightly higher scores, admittedly. I'm still not that into the pre-Swordfish stuff but there are songs I particularly love off of both albums.

dog latin (dog latin), Monday, 23 August 2004 00:38 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I'll rate what I own just for a laugh:

The Early Years: 4
The Early Years Vol 2: 8
Closing Time: 8 (for sentimental reasons)
The Heart Of Saturday Night: 6
Small Change: 7
Heartattack & Vine: 6
Swordfishtrombones: 10
Franks Wild Years: 9
Bone Machine: 8
Mule Variations: 7
Alice: 7
Blood Money: 8

piers (piers), Monday, 23 August 2004 01:03 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Looking at your ratings dog latin I can understand why you gave the great mid-80s stuff the highest ratings. Those albums I do believe are superior to the 90's releases, but Bone Machine does have some terrific songs on it, which has inspired me to pose another question. And I really must buy Raindogs.

piers (piers), Monday, 23 August 2004 01:41 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

what question?

and yes, you should buy rain dogs.

bone machine has got great tracks (Little Rain, I Don't Wanna Grow Up, Earth Died Screaming) and others that are not so great. It's my friend's favourite one but for me it's like his token heavy metal album.

Oh I forgot to rate Mule Variations. I give that a "4", although it can sound good if played loud enough and I really like "Come On Up To The House".

dog latin (dog latin), Monday, 23 August 2004 07:06 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

In addition to a new album, it looks like he'll be appearing the next Robert Altman film as well:

Charlie Rose (Charlie Rose), Monday, 23 August 2004 13:40 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Real Gone=faux-Cuban dadrock is STILL the best music there is.

adam. (nordicskilla), Sunday, 29 August 2004 01:13 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

just hook it up to my veins and fucking leave me be!

adam. (nordicskilla), Sunday, 29 August 2004 01:14 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

the first song is like standing way back and looking in a shoe box where a tiny ape anda tiny giraffe are making music with in a little kitchen.

kyle (akmonday), Sunday, 29 August 2004 07:00 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Yes, you said.

adam. (nordicskilla), Sunday, 29 August 2004 15:09 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

the kitchen is a new development

kyle (akmonday), Sunday, 29 August 2004 15:13 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I have Chuck Eddy on conference call for you.

adam. (nordicskilla), Sunday, 29 August 2004 15:19 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

it's been leaked. my copy is extremely muffled, especially towards the beginning. it's sounding good though - maybe a bit like a cross between mule variations and blood money and with a pinch of bone machine. favourite track so far is "don't go into that barn". not sure about the scratching - especially that "are you ready?" sample that gets played on a lot of hiphop tracks, it doesn't sound right on a waits track.

dog latin (dog latin), Tuesday, 7 September 2004 09:11 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

it leaked about 10 days ago, didn't it?!

toby (tsg20), Tuesday, 7 September 2004 09:27 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I love it: just can't understand why it's been getting so much lousy press.... or maybe, I can - because it's the most dangerously "out there" album he's released since Swordfishtrombones!

So glad to be seeing him on this tour, expecting great things - I think the only tour I'd rather have seen him on would have been the Big Time one.

Stewart Osborne (Stewart Osborne), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 11:37 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

lousy press? i've only seen good reviews. where's the negative stuff been?

Pete W (peterw), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 12:01 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Does no one know what song it is that "Hoist That Rag" reminds me of?!

Sick Mouthy (Nick Southall), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 12:02 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"lousy press? i've only seen good reviews. where's the negative stuff been?"

Mojo / Q / Ucunt - all lukewarm to poor IIRC.

Stewart Osborne (Stewart Osborne), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 12:06 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

i thought the mojo review was quite positive. not seen the other two but i was told a while ago the uncut review was going to be a bit of a downer. wire gives guarded praise.

i agree, though, it's a fantastic album.

sorry nick, no idea what song it reminds you of.

Pete W (peterw), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 12:16 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

southy - i know what you mean - it reminds me of something too but I can't place it. "Sins Of My Father" reminds me of "Since I've Been Loving You" by Led Zep for some reason.

dog latin (dog latin), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 16:53 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Hold on, I'm a Luton lad. Can you elaborate on this? It would be kind of weird if Waits' red barn turned out to be the one used to live down the road from. Although fairly unlikely."

"Murder in the Red Barn" was the title of a Victorian melodrama. Based on a true incident IIRC. Maybe even in Luton?


Soukesian, Wednesday, 13 October 2004 17:14 (fourteen years ago) Permalink


Soukesian, Wednesday, 13 October 2004 17:16 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

"Sins Of My Father" reminds me of "Since I've Been Loving You" by Led Zep for some reason.

Holy shit - the album totally made me think of LZIII, that track particularly, and I've been listening to them together. Maybe something about bluesy and folky dirges perverted by noise, improvising guitarists, and scratchy voices. (Not that straight blues voices aren't scratchy to start with or that trad songs can't be noisy or improvisatory.)

sundar subramanian (sundar), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 19:57 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Mind you, I compare everything to Zeppelin anyway.

sundar subramanian (sundar), Wednesday, 13 October 2004 20:07 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

also setting a precedent w/ intimate protest politicking of "Day after Tomorrow"(beautiful song, overlooked til today due to superficial resemblance to other recent Waits ballads). Can be construed as a general "warrior's lament", and I assume that's what Tom would say if asked, but the timing suggests otherwise, has he done anything remotely this direct before? I can't think of anything (without jumping through metaphorical hoops)

tremendoid, Wednesday, 13 October 2004 22:54 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Um. I can't help thinking the verse section of "Hoist That Rag" is some kind of Destiny's-esque power ballad pastiche... it's great.

Chuck Tatum (Chuck Tatum), Friday, 15 October 2004 16:26 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one month passes...
oh dear.

This is the first Waits album I don't like. Well, I might grow to like it, I've only had it for a week, but uhhh... it just isn't very compelling to me at all. I've never had a problem with his whole I-do-the-same-thing-each-time schtick before but there just doesn't seem any need for this album to exist.

Also his voice is mixed way way too low.

At least he's not actively embarrassing like Nick Cave though.

The Lex (The Lex), Tuesday, 30 November 2004 22:38 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

it's pretty hard for me to listen to. He's channeling some inner demon or something like he mostly always does, and to tell the truth he bores the shit out of me. I find something maudlin in what he does these days. I still like "Bone Machine" and a few of his Beefheart ripoffs OK, and have grown to like his earlier stuff better. But it's nothing that really compels me.

eddie hurt (ddduncan), Tuesday, 30 November 2004 23:00 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I probably feel the same way but w/o disappointment, strangely.
there's plenty of reason for the album to exist, just not as much overwhelming reason to listen to the whole album w/ any regularity, which has never been the case before. Doesn't seem tossed off, but doesn't seem lived in/bled on like his other releases(since Swordft).

tremendoid (tremendoid), Tuesday, 30 November 2004 23:03 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

I'm only disappointed because I loved everything he did up til this, even including Mule Variations which a lot of people seem to hate, so I figured he was a rare example of a singer-songwriter managing to stay good and relevant (to me AND generally) into old age.

But bloody hell, all the songs are EXACTLY THE SAME here and - I'm listening to it right now trying in vain to find a way in - oh my christ here's another spoken word exercise which there is no excuse for.

The Lex (The Lex), Tuesday, 30 November 2004 23:09 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

The production ruins it.

Chris Rda, Tuesday, 30 November 2004 23:13 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

Also his voice is mixed way way too low.

B-b-but it's ALL his voice!

It is true that they didn't mix his vocal percussion like drums so it mixes with the melodic vocal parts and gets a bit muddy, but I don't mind it so much.

I still really like everything on it except the last track. Marc Ribot just shines.

Jordan (Jordan), Tuesday, 30 November 2004 23:26 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

it takes a few listens definitely and i must admit some tracks are a lot better than others but i kinda think that about all his 90s releases - hit and miss.

Sins Of My Father, Hoist That Rag, Don't Go Into That Barn, How's It Going To End are all top notch though.

dog latin (dog latin), Wednesday, 1 December 2004 01:39 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

At least he's not actively embarrassing like Nick Cave though.

the new Nick Cave album is great, though (I admit the last two were not). As for this Waits album: I can't get into it. I keep trying, but it slips by and nothing sticks in my memory.

kyle (akmonday), Wednesday, 1 December 2004 14:04 (fourteen years ago) Permalink

one year passes...
Lay your head where my heart used to be
Hold the earth above me
Lay down in the green grass
Remember when you loved me

Come closer don't be shy
Stand beneath a rainy sky
The moon is over the rise
Think of me as a train goes by

Clear the thistles and brambles
Whistle 'Didn't He Ramble'
Now there's a bubble of me
And it's floating in thee

Stand in the shade of me
Things are now made of me
The weather vane will say...
It smells like rain today

God took the stars and he tossed 'em
Can't tell the birds from the blossoms
You'll never be free of me
He'll make a tree from me

Don't say good bye to me
Describe the sky to me
And if the sky falls, mark my words
We'll catch mocking birds

Lay your head where my heart used to be
Hold the earth above me
Lay down in the green grass
Remember when you loved me

Steve Shasta (Steve Shasta), Wednesday, 4 October 2006 15:58 (twelve years ago) Permalink

three years pass...

I wonder if I still have this. I thought maybe I made the mistake of buying Real Gone while I was feeling pretty burned out on Tom and that was why never got into it, though this thread's got me feeling I may have been right. I feel like I could start listening to the guy again, but I'm wondering if all I really need is like, The Black Rider, and Rain Dogs, and one or two others.

retrovaporized nebulizer (â•“abies), Wednesday, 11 November 2009 03:03 (nine years ago) Permalink

i really love this record but it would have benefited from being a lil shorter

myndbloom, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 05:09 (nine years ago) Permalink

No, dig it out, this is a great one!

Soukesian, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 11:44 (nine years ago) Permalink

It is! Love the stripped-down sound, that incredible guitar, and some of the lyrics are among Waits' best in my op: Just check out "How's it gonna end", "Make it rain" and "Day after tomorrow", which I'm sure has already been discussed to death.

the Dirt, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 13:31 (nine years ago) Permalink

One of his most rockin' albums IMHO. The call-and-response section of "Don't go into that barn" always raises the hair on the back of my neck.

Soukesian, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 13:59 (nine years ago) Permalink

Great album, not a bad track on it.

I am flesh and blood. You are software and circuitry. (chap), Wednesday, 11 November 2009 14:09 (nine years ago) Permalink

Probably his most solid since Rain Dogs actually.

I am flesh and blood. You are software and circuitry. (chap), Wednesday, 11 November 2009 14:13 (nine years ago) Permalink

Loved it when it first came out-have not listened to it lately

Pinto Basin, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 18:10 (nine years ago) Permalink

This is one of those albums that I liked when it came out but I didn't love it. Took it out the other night and for some reason it hit home and now I would rate it one of his best.

Jim, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 21:32 (nine years ago) Permalink

this album rules. Ribot's guitar solo in Hoist that Rag kills me every time.

black lightning light (herb albert), Wednesday, 11 November 2009 22:39 (nine years ago) Permalink

New live album is tons of fun, even if it is a heavily bootlegged date.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 11 November 2009 23:09 (nine years ago) Permalink

Is the new album one show or a comp from different places? I have the NPR show from Atlanta that got bootlegged so I haven't bothered to check the official disc out.

EZ Snappin, Thursday, 12 November 2009 02:14 (nine years ago) Permalink

One show, the Atlanta one, I believe. With a second disc of banter!

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 12 November 2009 02:47 (nine years ago) Permalink

That's cool - thought it was a comp from different places with a typical show's setlist. Actually, it can't be the NPR show as the Atlanta concert is over two hours long! Must be from somewhere else.

EZ Snappin, Thursday, 12 November 2009 02:54 (nine years ago) Permalink

new live one super cheap at amazon:

tylerw, Saturday, 14 November 2009 16:39 (nine years ago) Permalink

he is *great*, isn't he? sometimes when I think about his schtick, it seems a little tired, but then I hear/see something like that and am amazed all over again.

tylerw, Saturday, 14 November 2009 17:51 (nine years ago) Permalink

one year passes...

Why are his albums so long?

My only real problem with them. By the time I get to track #16, I've forgotten what the first 5 songs sound like.

But yeah, I like this one.

If Assholes Could Fly This Place Would Be An Airport, Thursday, 13 October 2011 00:51 (seven years ago) Permalink

You'll like his new one then, it's a tidy 45 mins. And it's great!

Simon H., Thursday, 20 October 2011 05:23 (seven years ago) Permalink

from the pitchfork interview:

My wife Kathleen wanted to do 12 three-minute songs. Get in, get out. No fucking around. Because people don't have a lot of time. The way I think is more like, "Oh, you got time for 19 songs on there? Put 19 songs on there, baby." She says," No, no, no. Twelve." Like the eggs, 12. You can do a lot in two minutes. So I'm starting to get more economical as I go. Don't overstate, don't restate.

encarta it (Gukbe), Thursday, 20 October 2011 06:03 (seven years ago) Permalink

Dug the new one as well, having only heard it once. A nice condensation of his schtick - and I mean that in the best possible way.

Turangalila, Thursday, 20 October 2011 16:45 (seven years ago) Permalink

Thirded. Like it on first listen, which isn't always the case with his albums.

Matt M., Thursday, 20 October 2011 17:09 (seven years ago) Permalink

six years pass...

The newly remixed version of Real Gone is, believe it or not, worth everyone's time. Everything that dragged this album down (beat-boxing, slightly harsh production) has been toned down and a few subtle tweaks here and there make for a much better listen

FREEZE! FYI! (dog latin), Saturday, 30 December 2017 19:00 (one year ago) Permalink

Abrasive production is why I like it tbh but interested to hear this

kolakube (Ross), Saturday, 30 December 2017 20:11 (one year ago) Permalink

Hoist that Rag was perfect tho

Gukbe, Monday, 1 January 2018 01:27 (one year ago) Permalink

oh wow this sounds WAY different from the original mix, way more of an overhaul than I was expecting

Simon H., Wednesday, 3 January 2018 20:59 (one year ago) Permalink

xp I definitely prefer the new version of HTR with the trumpet intro, just lifts it a bit

FREEZE! FYI! (dog latin), Thursday, 4 January 2018 16:45 (one year ago) Permalink

I'd have liked some deep, subtle horns added to 'How's It Going To End'. Have to say, other than HTR, the rest of the changes are a lot more subtle. Or what else am I missing? It's been a little while since I listened to the original.

FREEZE! FYI! (dog latin), Thursday, 4 January 2018 16:53 (one year ago) Permalink

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