“Real Gone” sounds like an orgy hosted by drunken Koala bears atop of a Eucalyptus tree. Or having sex in the back of a Hillman Avenger, whilst, (unbeknownst to you), being watched by a police sniper.
My God, what's going on here? Real gone is he? He's really Real Gone? Yep. I guess he is this time, momma. He's Real Gone. But where? Where's he gone? Can you, you, or you, any of you tell me where he's gone, man, cos you know I need to know, man. I need to know where he's gone, man cos he's real gone. Real Gone, man... Man...Hey, nam! Maybe he's gone to Real Gone, you know? Maybe Real Gone is a place man, maybe he's gone to Real Gone, man... Man? Where's real Gone? I don't know the way to Real Gone, man...
"Real Gone" sounds like an orgy hosted by drunken Koala bears atop of a Eucalyptus tree. Or drowning in the vat of chocolate at Willy Wonka's factory. Or chasing an effeminate camel wearing flip flops, (not you, the camel). Or King George the Fifth putting his underpants on in the dark. Or the rattling sound made by the small go cart carrying the alabaster image of Scott Walker, that, in turn, is being pulled by a pug dog. Or the rebellious eel fishermen of Utrecht eating their sandwiches. Or having sex in the back of a Hillman Avenger, whilst, (unbeknownst to you), being watched by a police sniper. Or the burning of the mad guy's collection of 5437 Thriller lps (by Michael Jackson). Or the dragging of 20 tins of pear soup through the automatic carwash. Or the ingestion of said same soup by a band of stoats. Or the staff of Wonkees restaurant in Leicester Square doing the Charleston whilst wearing shoes made of cabbages. Or Leon Trotsky's earwax being fried. Or Glenda Jackson blowing through a trumpet full of bubblebath. Or an invasion of ducks. Or the re-enactment of the battle of Ligny by plastic squirrels, bought from the garden centre. Or the devastation caused by two neurotic elephants in a bulb factory. Or Bruce Springsteen with a cold, (actually that's wrong; sorry, it doesn't sound like Bruce Springsteen with a cold).
Before any of you think I'm taking the piss, both of Tom Waits and this album, I must assure you that, contrary to the impressions you may have garnered from the previous section, I think Real Gone is pretty brilliant. Further analysis is irrelevant. Like "Franks Wild Years", or "Bone Machine", or "Black Rider", "Real Gone" is brilliant, eccentric and hermetically sealed. Waits chases his muse in his way, and we must be thankful. If you can't handle it, fair enough. Don't slag it though, you do yourself a disservice.
Words : Richard Foster