A Little Rain - Bone Machine [195]

Amateur meteorologist and part-time Muppet Tom Waits takes another stab at bleak reportage in this song about loss and the threat to childhood. Jenny Owen Youngs returns for another discussion around Randy Newman, Django Reinhardt and our old friend the Smooth Marble Egg.

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
A Little Rain, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

I Think It's Going To Rain Today, Randy Newman, Randy Newman (1968)

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Jesus Gonna Be Here - Bone Machine [194]

Our latest guest-host Jenny Owen Youngs joins us as Waits goes full-spiritual for this street-corner preacher scream. We chat about ironic or revolutionary attitudes to religion in LA and Scotland, some of our own religious experiences in music, and the role of coughing in exorcisms.

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
Jesus Gonna Be Here, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam, Enter The Vaselines, The Vaselines (1987/2009)

Jesus Doesn't Want Me For A Sunbeam, MTV Unplugged in New York, Nirvana (1994)

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The Ocean Doesn't Want Me - Bone Machine [193]

For our third track with Eliza and Greg, we delve into a bleaker and more introspective world in Waits's atmospheric poem contemplating seaside suicide. Returning to his attitude to alcohol and growing up, we also take a look at a longer theatrical piece for comparison, via the work of Samuel Beckett.

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
The Ocean Doesn't Want Me, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

A Piece Of Monologue, Sound For Spaces, Scanner/Robin Rimbaud/Samuel Beckett (1979/1998)

Maker of My Sorrow, Footnotes for the Spring, Eliza Rickman (2015)

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Who Are You - Bone Machine [192]

Greg and Eliza return to question Martin and Sam’s identity in this fifth track from Bone Machine, as Waits challenges an old lover… or maybe interrogates the music industry… or both? We make comparisons with a more even-handed musical picture of a breakup, and discuss how the song represents Waits and/or Brennan’s ideas of relationships.

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
Who Are You, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

Somebody That I Used To Know, Making Mirrors, Gotye feat. Kimbra (2011)

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All Stripped Down - Bone Machine [191] ​

As Song by Song progresses through Bone Machine, Sam & Martin welcome Eliza Rickman and Greg Alison for a conversation around the ambience of the album, both thematically as well as sonically. We discuss the overlap of religion and sexuality in this song, the presence of material things in this song as well as our interval artist Bessie Smith, and the antiquing opportunities around the Sebastopol, CA area.

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
All Stripped Down, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

Nobody Knows You When You're Down And Out, The Best of Bessie Smith, Bessie Smith (1929)

UPCYCLerS Episode 1 - DJ Wind-Up (2018)
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Such a Scream - Bone Machine [190] ​

A third week with guest hosts Vanessa & Kent brings Martin & Sam to Poetic Analysis 101 in this funhouse-mirror love song to Brennan. We talk about the depth of imagery that Waits employs, the vocal storytelling that he and our interval artist deploy, and Vanessa finally books that gig at Martin’s much-anticipated funeral!

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
Such a Scream, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

Acrobat, Half Way Home, Angel Olson (2012)

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Dirt in the Ground - Bone Machine [189] ​

More music chat (which is the goal, after all) with Kent, Vanessa, Martin & Sam, as Waits releases some of the tension established in the previous track with this weird breathy hymn to the end of life. With discussion of other weird vocal styles, a comparison between bleakness vs acceptance in death, plus an exciting bonus track featuring the resonant space inside Sam’s mouth, Song by Song continues it’s journey through Bone Machine.

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
Dirt in the Ground, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

Satisfied Mind, For Pete's Sake, Pete Drake & His Talking Steel Guitar (1965/2005)

Pete Drake and His Talkbox on the Jimmy Dean Show, via YouTube

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Earth Died Screaming - Bone Machine [188] ​

Hey there - how’s it going? Oh nothing much, you? Yeah, it has been a while, but you know how it goes. Hey, you want to talk about some new Tom Waits songs? Cool.

As we embark on our 14th season, Sam and Martin welcome Vanessa Lowe and Kent Sparling to talk through the quasi-religious eco-disaster anthem which opens Waits’s 1992 offering. We take a look at the contributors to this track and their relationship to Waits, the technical expertise both in this as well as the the work of Primus... plus Martin Austwick’s Tom Waits Secret Origin story, true believers!

Music extracts used for illustrative/review purposes include:
Earth Died Screaming, Bone Machine, Tom Waits (1992)

Tommy The Cat, Sailing the Seas of Cheese, Primus (1991)

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