Tom WAITS – Rain Dogs 1985

Tom WAITS – Rain Dogs 1985
ILPS 9803

Blues

With its jarring rhythms and unusual instrumentation — marimba,
accordion, various percussion — as well as its frequently surreal
lyrics, Rain Dogs is very much a follow-up to Swordfishtrombones,
which is to say that it sounds for the most part like The Threepenny
Opera being sung by Howlin’ Wolf. The chief musical difference is the
introduction of guitarist Marc Ribot, who adds his noisy leads to the
general cacophony. But Rain Dogs is sprawling where its predecessor
had been focused Tom Waits’ lyrics here sometimes are imaginative to
the point of obscurity, seemingly chosen to fit the rhythms rather than
for sense. In the course of 19 tracks and 54 minutes, Waits sometimes
goes back to the more conventional music of his earlier records,
which seems like a retreat, though such tracks as the catchy Hang Down
Your Head, Time, and especially Downtown Train (frequently covered
and finally turned into a Top Ten hit by Rod Stewart five years later)
provide some relief as well as variety. Rain Dogs can’t surprise as
Swordfishtrombones had, and in his attempt to continue in the direction
suggested by that album, Waits occasionally borders on the chaotic
(which may only be to say that, like most of his records, this one is uneven).
But much of the music matches the earlier album, and there is so much of
it that that is enough to qualify Rain Dogs as one of Waits’ better albums.
By William Ruhlmann, AMG.
**
William Shimmel- Accordion (tracks: A3, A9, B1)
Robert Musso- Banjo (tracks: A7)
Tony Levine- Bass (tracks: B8)
Greg Cohen- Double Bass (tracks: A5, B3, B4) ,
Larry Taylor- Double Bass (tracks: A1, A3, A4, A6 to B2, B5 to B7) ,
Tony Garnier- Double Bass (tracks: A2)
Mickey Curry- Drums (tracks: B8) ,
Stephen Taylor Arvizu Hodges- Drums (tracks: A1 to A4, A6, B1, B2, B6, B7)
Chris Spedding- Guitar (tracks: A1) ,
G.E. Smith- Guitar (tracks: B8) ,
Keith Richards- Guitar (tracks: A6, B5, B6) ,
Marc Ribot- Guitar (tracks: A1 to A4, A7, A8, B1) ,
Robert Quine- Guitar (tracks: B6, B8)
Michael Blair- Percussion (tracks: A1 to A4, A7, A8, B1, B3 to B5, B8 to B10)
John Lurie- Alto Sax (tracks: B7)
Ralph Carney- Saxophone [Bass], Clarinet (tracks: A4, B2 to B5, B9)
Bob Funk- Trombone  (tracks: A3, A5, B1)
**
A1.  Singapore  2:43
A2.  Clap Hands  3:45
A3.  Cemetery Polka  1:47
A4.  Jockey Full of Bourbon  2:45
A5.  Tango Till They’re Sore  2:50
A6.  Big Black Mariah  2:43
A7.  Diamonds and Gold  2:32
A8.  Hang Down Your Head  2:30
A9.  Time  3:55
B1.  Rain Dogs  2:53
B2.  Midtown (Instrumental)   1:01
B3.  9th & Hennepin  1:57
B4.  Gun Street Girl  4:37
B5.  Union Square  2:23
B6.  Blind Love  4:19
B7.  Walking Spanish  3:05
B8.  Downtown Train  3:50
B9.  Bride of Rain Dogs (Instrumental)   1:07
B10. Anywhere I Lay My Head  2:47
**

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