Saturday, February 3, 2018

Tom Waits - Closing Time (1973 us, great blues jazzy rock, 2009 japan SHM remaster)

Tom Waits' debut album is a minor-key masterpiece filled with songs of late-night loneliness. Within the apparently narrow range of the cocktail bar pianistics and muttered vocals, Waits and producer Jerry Yester manage a surprisingly broad collection of styles, from the jazzy "Virginia Avenue" to the up-tempo funk of "Ice Cream Man" and from the acoustic guitar folkiness of "I Hope That I Don't Fall in Love With You" to the saloon song "Midnight Lullaby," which would have been a perfect addition to the repertoires of Frank Sinatra or Tony Bennett. Waits' entire musical approach is stylized, of course, and at times derivative -- "Lonely" borrows a little too much from Randy Newman's "I Think It's Going to Rain Today" -- and his lovelorn lyrics can be sentimental without being penetrating. 

But he also has a gift for gently rolling pop melodies, and he can come up with striking, original scenarios, as on the best songs, "Ol' 55" and "Martha," which Yester discreetly augments with strings. Closing Time announces the arrival of a talented songwriter whose self-conscious melancholy can be surprisingly moving. 
by William Ruhlmann
1. Ol' '55 - 3:58
2. I Hope That I Don't Fall In Love With You - 3:54
3. Virginia Avenue - 3:10
4. Old Shoes (And Picture Postcards) - 3:41
5. Midnight Lullaby - 3:27
6. Martha - 4:32
7. Rosie - 4:03
8. Lonely - 3:11
9. Ice Cream Man - 3:05
10.Little Trip To Heaven (On The Wings Of Your Love) - 3:37
11.Grapefruit Moon - 4:48
12.Closing Time - 4:24
All songs written by Tom Waits

*Tom Waits - Vocals, Piano, Guitar, Harmonium, Harpsichord, Celeste
*Delbert Bennett - Trumpet
*Shep Cooke - Guitar, Backing Vocals
*Peter Klimes - Guitar, Pedal Steel Guitar
*Bill Plummer - Double Bass
*John Seiter – Drums, Backing Vocals
*Arni Egilsson - Bass Guitar
*Jesse Ehrlich - Cello
*Tony Terran - Trumpet

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