Follow TV Tropes


Music / Bad As Me

Go To
You're the same kind of bad as me!

Bad As Me is the seventeenth studio album by Tom Waits, released in 2011 through ANTI-. At the time it was his first studio album with all new music in seven years. It received very positive reviews and became his highest charting album ever, peaking at #6 in the US billboard charts.


  1. "Chicago" (2:15)
  2. "Raised Right Men" (3:24)
  3. "Talking at the Same Time" (4:14)
  4. "Get Lost" (2:42)
  5. "Face to the Highway" (3:43)
  6. "Pay Me" (3:14)
  7. "Back in the Crowd" (2:49)
  8. "Bad as Me" (3:10)
  9. "Kiss Me" (3:41)
  10. "Satisfied" (4:05)
  11. "Last Leaf" (2:56)
  12. "Hell Broke Luce" (3:57)
  13. "New Year's Eve" (4:32)

Hell Troped Luce

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: "Satisfied"
    Let me bleach like the bones on a beach
    I’ll be hard like a pit from a peach
    (...) Let the bullet go back into the barrel
  • Alliterative Title: "Raised Right Men" and "Last Leaf".
  • Armchair Military: Discussed in "Hell Broke Luce". See War Is Hell, below.
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: "Back In The Crowd"
    There's a battle going on between the blue and the grey
  • Call-Back: "Back in the Crowd" includes the line "Take my picture from the frame," recalling the song "Picture in a Frame" from Mule Variations.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: "Hell Broke Luce" has a couple of F-bombs in it.
  • CrossOver: Keith Richards sings during "Last Leaf".
  • Face on the Cover: Waits' grotesque grin in close-up.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: Waits counts to four in Spanish near the end of "Bad As Me".
  • "I Want" Song: "Kiss Me"
    Kiss me
    I want you to kiss me
    Like a stranger once again
    Kiss me like a stranger once again
    I want to believe that our love’s a mystery
    I want to believe that our love’s a sin
    I want you to kiss me like a stranger once again
  • Just Friends: "Back In The Crowd" is a heartbreaking plea for an ex-lover to go back to seeing him as just another stranger rather than condemning him to the melancholy yearning of being Just Friends when they've been so much more to one another.
  • Location Song: "Chicago"
    Maybe things will be better in Chicago
    To leave all we’ve ever known
    For a place we’ve never seen
  • My Country Tis of Thee That I Sting: "Hell Broke Luce"
    Boom went his head away
    And boom went Valerie
    What the hell was it that the president said?
    Give him a beautiful parade instead
  • Mundane Made Awesome: "Last Leaf", about a tree leaf on an otherwise empty tree.
  • One-Word Title: "Chicago" and "Satisfied".
  • Protest Song: The anti-war song "Hell Broke Luce", about the suicide of Iraq War veteran Jeff Lucey.
  • Real Life Writes the Plot: "Hell Broke Luce" is based on the story of a real soldier, Jeff Lucey, who killed himself after returning home from going to war. This also explains why the title is spelled "Luce" rather than "loose".
  • Record Producer: Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan.
  • Shaped Like Itself: In the song "New Year's Eve," "what sounded like fireworks turned out to be just what it was."
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: "Hell Broke Luce" tells the story of Jeff Lucey, an Iraq War veteran who killed himself due to the horrors he saw and committed.
  • Shout-Out:
    • "Get Lost" mentions radio presenter Wolfman Jack and the song "Love Me Tender".
    Turn up Wolfman Jack
    Please love me tender
    • "Last Leaf"
    They say I got staying power
    Here on the tree
    But I've been here since Eisenhower
    And I've outlived even he
    • "New Year's Eve" quotes from "Auld Lang Syne", both melodically and lyrically in the refrain.
  • Singer Name Drop: Keith Richards, who plays guitar during the track, receives a shoutout in "Satisfied", whose title also brings up associations with The Rolling Stones (Band)' song "Satisfaction" from Out of Our Heads.
    Now Mr. Jagger and Mr. Richards/I will scratch where I've been itching.
  • Slasher Smile: Waits on the cover.
  • Special Guest: Blues harmonica player Charlie Musselwhite is heard during "Chicago", "Raised Right Men", "Bad As Me", "Satisfied" and "Hell Broke Luce". Keith Richards plays guitar during "Chicago", "Satisfied, "Last Leaf" and "Hell Broke Luce" and sings during "Last Leaf". Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea plays his instrument during "Raised Right Men" and "Hell Broke Luce". Les Claypool (Primus) plays bass during "Satisfied".
  • Stock Sound Effects: "Hell Broke Luce" has sound effects of gunfire.
  • Title Track: "Bad As Me".
    You're the same kind of bad as me!
  • War Is Hell: "Hell Broke Luce", in which a soldier rants and eventually commits suicide after returning home safely from the war.
    How is it that the only ones responsible for making this mess
    Got their sorry asses stapled to a goddamn desk?