Bad as Me comprises mostly love songs: paeans to lasting love, the kind that changes and bends. Even when Waits is yearning for freedom, as he does on the drunk and twitchy "Get Lost", he still wants his longtime girl by his side. "When you wear that real tight sweater/ You know I can't resist/ It's been that way forever baby/ Ever since we kissed," he croons, his voice raw and giddy; he sounds like a guy who was pummeled by a car, got up, staggered off, and started singing. On the title track, over piano, baritone sax, and spastic guitar stabs, he celebrates mutual failure ("You're mother superior in only a bra/ You're the same kind of bad as me"), positioning compatible sin as its own triumph over circumstance. Elsewhere, he adheres to old-fashioned ideals about the "power of a good woman's love," lamenting, as he does on the ramshackle "Raised Right Men", the ways in which imperfect husbands ("Gunplay Maxwell and Flat Nose George, Ice Pick Ed Newcomb") routinely fail their partners.