Orphans: Brawlers, Bawlers and Bastards is a spectacular musical journey, which visits almost every genre of American song tradition.
Now officially RIAA-certified gold, this box set redefines the words "Deluxe" or "Collectors Edition." With 7 LPs of 180 gram vinyl, six previously unreleased songs, a 32-page book featuring lyrics and insight, and a beautiful hardbound box,the collection captures the full scope of Tom Waits' shamanic powers as a vocalist, literary lyricist, romantic melodist, innovative arranger and pioneer of sonic worlds.
The set, which took over three years to compile and record, is grouped by genre with songs guaranteed to move and shake the heart, the body, the mind and most unquestionably the soul.
Each of the albums separately arranged and sub-titled - "Brawlers," "Bawlers" and "Bastards" to encapsulate the full range of Waits' nomadic scope of musical styles.
Brawlers is packed with full throated juke joint stomp, boogies and riotous blues. It's roadhouse Waits,..He chugs, whistles and screams. It's primal steaming surreal blues. He channels the Stones, Beefheart, Muddy Waters and T-Rex. One new one, "Low Down"is raw garage rock with Waits' 20 year old son, Casey on drums and San Francisco's white trash blues icon, Ron Hacker, on guitar.
Bawlers- Lonesome ballads about the sadness at the end of the road are framed by tender songs of innocence and green hope. The plaintive hill country laments of, "Tell It To Me" and the cautionary tale, "Fannin Street" blend poignantly with saloon songs of betrayal and despair ("The World Keeps Turning") Celtic waltzes and bitter cabaret torch songs like, "It's Over" and "Little Drop Of Poison", all of which explore what the heart gives and what it takes away.
Bastards - explores the strange and unusual side of Waits, who is peculiar by nature. Contained here is experimental music and scary tales. There are uncategorizable diversions into this dark side. It tunnels beneath the city with spiels, rants, mouth rhythms, including a poignant reminiscence of car ownership, a Ramones cover and a version of Daniel Johnston's, "King Kong," a disturbing bedtime story,(not for children faint of heart),and a poem by Charles Bukowski. It has insects, murder, drowning and insanity. Or as ma says, the full dinner menu.