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Tom Waits - Swordfishtrombones Click here to see this CD at!

By Daniel Durchholz

The first album of the loose trilogy that also includes Rain Dogs and Franks Wild Years, Swordfishtrombones marked a radical departure for Waits, whose avant-garde ambitions became plain not so much in his lyrics or subject matter--the songs here deal, as do his older albums, with hard life on the wrong side of the tracks and dreams of escape and transcendence--but in the music, a sound somewhere between German cabaret music from between the wars and contemporary Manhattan rush hour. Odd time signatures, unusual instrumentation (glass harmonicas and brake drums, among others), and Waits's barked vocals make this one of his most individualistic and challenging albums.

1. Underground9. Frank's Wild Years
2. Shore Leave10. Swordfishtrombone
3. Dave the Butcher [Instrumental]11. Down, Down, Down
4. Johnsburg, Illinois12. Soldier's Things
5. 16 Shells from a Thirty-Ought Six13. Gin Soaked Boy
6. Town With No Cheer14. Trouble's Braids
7. In the Neighborhood15. Rainbirds [Instrumental]
8. Just Another Sucker on the Vine [Instrumental]


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Artist: Tom Waits

Released: September 11, 1983

Availability: CD, Vinyl


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