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Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
|1. Earth Died Screaming|
|2. Dirt In The Ground|
|3. Such A Scream|
|4. All Stripped Down|
|5. Who Are You|
|6. The Ocean Doesn't Want Me|
|7. Jesus Gonna Be Here|
|8. A Little Rain|
|9. In The Colosseum|
|10. Goin' Out West|
|11. Murder In The Red Barn|
|12. Black Wings|
|13. Whistle Down The Wind|
|14. I Don't Wanna Grow Up|
|15. Let Me Get Up On It|
|16. That Feel|
The abnormal has become the norm for Tom Waits, so, once again, Bone Machine is laden with odd timbres, archaic acoustics, and raw vocals. This time, however, Waits has built his songs around a Harry Partch-inspired fascination with primitive percussion. With a crew of Northern California musicians along to add spare adornments, Waits fashions pretty, sentimental tunes ("A Little Rain", Whistle Down the Wind") and hellish stampedes of clanging metal and hoarse shouting ("Earth Died Screaming", "Let Me Get Up on It", the latter the 53-second distillation of Bone Machine quintessence--just Waits distorted bellowing and banging. Bone Machine is both appalling and appealing. There are elements to this album that seem designed to drive away the faint of heart, and then there are melodies that melt in your hand. --Steve Stolder
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Top Customer Reviews
After that, we have another of Waits' experimental pieces, similar to "9th & Hennepin" from Rain Dogs and "What's He Building" from Mule Variations. I have always enjoyed this piece, and it does especially suit the lyrics of the song (which, personally, I found mildly disturbing). Next, we have a stripped-down, gospel-blues number called "Jesus Gonna Be Here", in which Waits returns partially to his "Prince voice". I really like the rythm and vibe of this song, which I have tried to capture in one of my own recordings. "A Little Rain" I find very beutiful, especially the verse which goes "....she was 15 years old, and she'd seen the ocean.....she climbed into a van, with a vegabond.....and the last thing she said, was "I love you, mom"......and A Little Rain never hurt no one...." Personally, this brings to mind 1960's southern California, in which a young girl is climbing into the back of a van with some shady characters, while storm clouds loom near by.Read more ›
The album opens with Earth Died Screaming, and loud, wierd and apocalyptic song that gives you a good impression of what is to come. The lyrics deal with the end of the world, only Waits is too busy thinking of his lover to notice ("The Earth died screaming while I lay dreaming - dreaming of you"). In essense though, the track is very representative of the experimental nature of the album and Waits incredible lyrics. When I say that Waits is perhaps the best lyricist I've ever heard, I am not exagerating. When coupled with Waits unique voice, at times shaky and emotional and at other times fierce and haunting, some of the greatest music I've ever heard is created.
The album is certainly not repetitive either, nor does it outstay its welcome. Earth Died Screaming, Jesus Gonna Be Here, In The Colloseum and Murder In The Red Barn are all loud, sometimes atonal percussion lead tracks with Waits growling and spitting out bizzare and sometimes scary imagery. All Stripped Down, Such A Scream, Going Out West and I Don't Wanna Grow Up are bluesy rock songs that make you want to bang your head (incidentally, Going Out West was the only other non-electronic track alongside The Pixies' Where Is My Mind used in the Fight Club soundtrack).Read more ›
Instead of even a trap kit for drums, nearly every song employs Tom, Kathleen, and another musician playing "sticks" (as a comical sidenote, the three musicians are called 'The Boners') which literally sounds like a human skeleton being played like a xylophone. Then, the rest of the instrumentation is fairly low-key. If I had to assign instruments that could summarize this album, it would be "sticks", bass clarinet, and acoustic bass. The most essential part of this album is Tom's voice, which has never come closer to convincing half of America that he is dying of throat cancer. To add to the emotional rawness that Tom purveys through these songs, many of the time he sings in falsetto...you can imagine what THAT sounds like.
The songs are very blues-influenced on this album, but early blues. The instrumentation is "All Stripped Down", but extremely original. And if you haven't heard "Goin' Out West" yet, you are missing out on Tom Waits' coolest song ever.
This album is not for the light Waits fans. If you need an intro disc, get "Raindogs" or "Alice", don't start here. But for a Tom Waits fan, this may be his best.
Most recent customer reviews
tom waits is an incredible lyricist, but you'll have to wade through some pretty dissonant tones before you can get to those poetic gems... for the hardcore, only...Published on Nov. 15 2013 by doc
I'm no expert on Tom Waits but I have three favorite albums: Swordfishtrombones, Mule Variations and yes, Bone Machine. Read morePublished on June 4 2013 by Serge A. Simard
Let me state right off that there is no real bad Tom Waits album (well, ok , I never really got 'The black rider'). There are some that are better that the others. Read morePublished on March 29 2004
Waits create a world of whiskey soaked bone men, and step into it as the leading artist, with an everchanging voice. I really love the in-fading percussion in the first track. Read morePublished on March 19 2004 by HMH
Okay, to be honest, I only like 5 songs on here...but they are so good, they each deserve a star, hence the 5 star rating. Here they are... Read morePublished on Feb. 28 2004 by Dokter Pogo
Ok you got like 6 decent songs and alot of boring ones two. Seriously stripped down. I like lo-fi albums, but this goes to far at times. Read morePublished on Feb. 27 2004 by Anapanasati
Tom Waits is the singer/songwriter on whom I can always rely to scare the heck out of my family and college friends. Read morePublished on Jan. 15 2004 by Robert C. Hamilton
I'm not kidding or exaggerating. I put this with The Beatles White Album, Captain Beefheart's Lick My Decals Off Baby, and T. Rex's The Slider. No kidding. Read morePublished on Jan. 4 2004 by Ian Halloran