OK, I’ll be the first to admit that I had low expectations for the new Scarlett Johansson all-Tom Waits cover album, “Anywhere I Lay My Head”, when it was first announced. Relating the lyrics and songwriting of one of music’s most revered songwriters seemed too lofty a task for any actress-turned-singer to take on.

But I’ve been listening to the “Listening Party” samples here:

And I’m pleased to say that I like it. I like it a lot. Her voice, deep, echo-y and appearing distant within a lush wall of orchestration, doesn’t try to do more than it should. Her vocals remind me a little of Patti Smith or Johnette Napolitano. I’ll be picking this album up as soon as it’s released, and hopefully getting permission to air a track or two on the show.

There are bigger Tom waits fans out there than me, though. I’d love to hear what you think of her interpretations. (If comments are still not working, send me an email, and I’ll add a few responses to this post)