New Coat of Paint

Rating: NNNIn searching for artists to cover the seedy story-songs of Tom Waits, Manifesto wisely went to the wrong side.


Rating: NNN


In searching for artists to cover the seedy story-songs of Tom Waits, Manifesto wisely went to the wrong side of the tracks to solicit contributions from Andre Williams (at the Horseshoe Wednesday, May 31), Lydia Lunch, the Knoxville Girls, Sally Norvell, Neko Case, Carla Bozulich and Floyd Dixon.

A version of Whistling Past The Graveyard by the late Screamin’ Jay Hawkins is as eerie as you’d imagine, but it’s the way everyone handles the sleaze with reverential sensitivity that Waits would find truly horrifying. Regrettably few participants — save Eleni Mandell, who gives Muriel a sensuously sly gender twist — dare to bring anything radically new to the table. A quart of Thunderbird and a hammer would not have hurt.

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