HERE's What Tom Waits Has Been Up To
Well, after a week and a half of waiting, August 7th is finally here. And, as he put it in his own announcement...
TOM ENDS THE SUSPENSE.
After several days of cryptic messages and mysterious pictures from Tom Waits...
I hoped, with skepticism, for the album. Most hoped, knowingly in vain, for the tour.
The one rumor that surfaced time and again was a cruise. A cruise!!! Rolling Stone Magazine hinted at it, pointing to other recent music-themed cruises as evidence. Every time I brought up this buzz-building campaign, someone mentioned a cruise. I hoped not. But, I conceded, if anyone could make a music cruise cool...Tom Waits could.
The day is here...and the end to the suspense is....
A new video!
For a song from an album that came out almost a year ago!
Seems like a little bit of an overkill build-up in my book. But that's just me. And I'm not one to question Tom Waits. To do so would be to engage in an exercise in missing the point.
I was excited to see that it was a video for "Hell Broke Luce", one of my favorite tracks from Waits' "Bad As Me" album from last year. Waits has only in recent years ventured into political/anti-war topics, and he (probably wisely) does it infrequently. But when he dips his toe in that water, he does it well. With quite an impact.
When I saw Waits perform at the Fox Theater in St. Louis a few years ago, he brought the audience to their feet three times. Once upon taking the stage and once upon departing. The only standing ovation during the show was following a beautiful rendition of his heartbreaking anti-war song, "The Day After Tomorrow".
"Hell Broke Luce" is a much angrier tune than "The Day After Tomorrow". Where "Tomorrow" is longing, plaintive, and sad, "Luce" is pissed off and disillusioned.
While I still maintain that a week and a half lead-up to a video debut seems like a bit much, this does come pretty close to being worth it. This is a magnificent work of art; powerful and impacting. The graphics, animation, etc., accommodate the song perfectly, illustrating the hell, fury, confusion, absurdity, and horror that is war.
Have a look. And turn it up LOUD.
Ryan Mifflin is the host of Dirty Roots Radio, a "Quentin Tarantino-ization of a spaghetti western style old-school record show" featuring renegade country, vintage gospel, raw blues, greasy soul, punk, and funk. Tune in to Dirty Roots Radio every Thursday night from 8 to 10 p.m. (central) on WGRN 89.5 FM. Listen online from anywhere in the world at www.wgrn.net.
Mifflin blogs at: www.OtisRyanProductions.blogspot.com