‘The earth died screaming’
Tom Waits’s Bone Machine
in Monstrous media/spectral subjects
Abstract only
Log-in for full text

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

manchesterhive requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals - to see content that you/your institution should have access to, please log in through your library system or with your personal username and password.

If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/extracts and download selected front and end matter. 

Institutions can purchase access to individual titles; please contact manchesterhive@manchester.ac.uk for pricing options.

ACCESS TOKENS

If you have an access token for this content, you can redeem this via the link below:

Redeem token

Tom Waits’s album Bone Machine (1992) sounds like an apocalyptic vision, the clattering of percussion like a dance of skeletons, Waits's gravelly voice a necromancer conjuring America’s ghosts of both past and future. The album is itself a bone machine, a thing stitched together with all the scars showing. Its monstrosity articulates the spectres that surround an imminent apocalypse. Gothic media images are conjured up to show how much haunting, spectres and ghosts have always been part of the American national imagination. Drawing on David Wills’s concept of dorsality, in which the human is constituted in and through the technological, this chapter argues that Waits’s dorsal music employs unexpected sounds, disruptive musical technologies and vocal rasp in order to surprise and sometimes disconcert the listener. This disruptive and disrupted listening experience enables Waits to realise in auditory form a tradition of American Gothic that identifies with the outsider.

Monstrous media/spectral subjects

Imaging gothic from the nineteenth century to the present

Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 49 30 10
Full Text Views 49 14 0
PDF Downloads 13 3 0