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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2014 | Capitol Records (CAP)

Hi-Res Distinctions 4 étoiles Rock and Folk - Hi-Res Audio - Grammy Awards
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2002 | Interscope

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
Beck has always been known for his ever-changing moods -- particularly since they often arrived one after another on one album, sometimes within one song -- yet the shift between the neon glitz of Midnite Vultures and the lush, somber Sea Change is startling, and not just because it finds him in full-on singer/songwriter mode, abandoning all of the postmodern pranksterism of its predecessor. What's startling about Sea Change is how it brings everything that's run beneath the surface of Beck's music to the forefront, as if he's unafraid to not just reveal emotions, but to elliptically examine them in this wonderfully melancholy song cycle. If, on most albums prior to this, Beck's music was a sonic kaleidoscope -- each song shifting familiar and forgotten sounds into colorful, unpredictable combinations -- this discards genre-hopping in favor of focus, and the concentration pays off gloriously, resulting in not just his best album, but one of the greatest late-night, brokenhearted albums in pop. This, as many reviews and promotional interviews have noted, is indeed a breakup album, but it's not a bitter listen; it has a wearily beautiful sound, a comforting, consoling sadness. His words are often evocative, but not nearly as evocative as the music itself, which is rooted equally in country-rock (not alt-country), early-'70s singer/songwriterism, and baroque British psychedelia. With producer Nigel Godrich, Beck has created a warm, enveloping sound, with his acoustic guitar supported by grand string arrangements straight out of Paul Buckmaster, eerie harmonies, and gentle keyboards among other subtler touches that give this record a richness that unveils more with each listen. Surely, some may bemoan the absence of the careening, free-form experimentalism of Odelay, but Beck's gifts as a songwriter, singer, and musician have never been as brilliant as they are here. As Sea Change is playing, it feels as if Beck singing to you alone, revealing painful, intimate secrets that mirror your own. It's a genuine masterpiece in an era with too damn few of them. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 18, 1996 | Geffen Records

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
As crazy as its cover art (a Komondor running hurdles), Odelay confirms Beck’s genius as an assembler. While Mellow Gold and its hit song Loser was defined by its thrifty, lo-fi style, Odelay boasts a more luxurious production. But the founding idea is the same: combining the uncombinable! Sexual funk, psychedelic rock, lewd country blues, old school rap, wonky folk, flashy easy listening, Beck mixes, matches and unmatches! The samples are just as wild with a blend of Van Morrison’s Them, Rare Earth, Mandrill, Mantronix, Sly Stone, Dick Hyman, Edgar Winter, Lee Dorsey, and a few others… Despite these unlikely combinations, Odelay has its own identity. Yet another gem based on a healthy anti-rut philosophy. Indeed, Beck is not only a mad scientist when it comes to sound, but also a genuine songwriter at heart. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released October 13, 2017 | Capitol Records (CAP)

Hi-Res Distinctions Grammy Awards
Those following Beck Hansen since the dawn of the 90s know that he can play anything. Anything! From rural blues in Son House/Skip James fashion to Prince-like funk, slacker hip hop, Dylan-ian folk and lo-fi electro. If the tinkering ace from California first skyrocketed thanks to a convincing blend of folk and hip hop rhythms (the inevitable hymn Loser from 1993), he will over the years tend towards more classicism with Sea Changes (2002) and Morning Phase (2014). He’s done a complete 180° with Colors. This thirteenth album from Beck certainly isn’t lacking any hues. A vibrant mix of psychedelia à la Beatles, 80s pop, contemporary dancefloor, and funk crossed with hip hop, the stylistic kaleidoscope is complete! The wide variations are incidentally so far apart that they will probably rattle some newcomers. © CM/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2014 | Capitol Records (CAP)

Distinctions 4 étoiles Rock and Folk
Often pigeonholed as being prolific to a fault, Beck took an extended break from recording after the 2008 release of Modern Guilt. He kept himself busy, producing acclaimed albums for Charlotte Gainsbourg, Thurston Moore, and Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks, blowing off steam via his mischievous Record Club (an online series where he and his friends covered classic albums), and then easing back to original songwriting through the ambitious Song Reader project, a folio containing sheet music for 20 unrecorded songs. He also suffered a spinal injury in 2008, a fact not publicized until he was ready to release Morning Phase, his first album in six years, early in 2014. As Morning Phase is a slow, shimmering album deliberately in the vein of classic singer/songwriter LPs, it's easy to think of it as a pained, confessional sequel to Sea Change, the 2002 record written and recorded in the wake of a painful romantic breakup. Beck didn't shy away from these comparisons, calling it a "companion piece" to his acclaimed 2002 LP, and as "Morning" glimmers into view, sounding for all the world like "Golden Age," it almost seems as if Beck covered himself as part of the Record Club. Morning Phase soon develops its own distinct gait, one that's a little more relaxed than its cousin. Crucially, Beck has swapped sorrow for mere melancholy, a shift in attitude that makes this 2014 album sweeter than its predecessor, a distinction sometimes distinguished by moments where words, traditionally the sadness signifiers for sensitive troubadours, are washed away by cascading waves of candy-colored sound. Underneath this warm, enveloping aural blanket lie some sturdily constructed compositions -- the haunting "Heart Is a Drum," bringing to mind memories of Nick Drake; the loping country-rock "Say Goodbye" and its sister "Country Down"; "Blue Moon," where the skies part like the breaking dawn -- but the abiding impression left from this album is one of comfort, not despair, which makes Morning Phase distinctly different than its companion Sea Change. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 22, 2019 | Capitol Records

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When he exploded in 1993 with his brilliant single Loser, Beck was rather ahead of his time with his fusion of acoustic blues/folk and hip-hop beats. In its wake he unveiled an even wider palette with his album Odelay, mixing sexual funk, psychedelic rock, salacious country blues, old school rap and flashy easy-listening, all interspersed with samples from Van Morrison, Mandrill, Mantronix, Sly Stone, Dick Hyman, Edgar Winter and Lee Dorsey. Later, he indulged in a more classical folk-rock style with his beautiful album Sea Change. At 49 years old, Beck is no less innovative, this time sharing the task with a five star co-writer and co-producer: Pharrell Williams. Initially, the duo only planned to release a single, then an EP, then finally eleven tracks. While Beck is an expert in sophistication with bountiful ideas, Pharrell is more of a refined, minimalist type. Beck opts for the second approach here. The result is a stripped-back sound drenched in melancholy, largely due to the beautiful ballads, both delicate (Stratosphere) and electric (Everlasting Nothing). The Californian plays the role of the relaxed hedonist (like on the sugary smooth track See Through), as well as toying around with auto-tune (Uneventful Days) and letting himself be carried away by a pop wave with a light groove. And to keep his fans happy, Beck stays true to himself right from the opening track, Saw Lightning, with a slide guitar, a rap beat and a vintage microphone. The real strength of Hyperspace is that it does not try to turn the album into a hit machine - something that one might have expected from a Beck/Pharrell collaboration. And throughout this crazy pop-soul-rap-folk-rap-R&B-rock record, everything is much more subtle than it seems. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2002 | Interscope

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Rock - Released January 1, 2008 | Geffen

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Rock - Released March 16, 2005 | Interscope

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 1994 | DGC

From its kaleidoscopic array of junk-culture musical styles to its assured, surrealistic wordplay, Beck's debut album, Mellow Gold, is a stunner. Throughout the record, Beck plays as if there are no divisions between musical genres, freely blending rock, rap, folk, psychedelia, and country. Although his inspired sense of humor occasionally plays like he's a smirking, irony-addled hipster, his music is never kitschy, and his wordplay is constantly inspired. Since Mellow Gold was pieced together from home-recorded tapes, it lacks a coherent production, functioning more as a stylistic sampler: there are the stoner raps of "Loser" and "Beercan," the urban folk of "Pay No Mind (Snoozer)," the mock-industrial onslaught of "Mutherfuker," the garagey "Fuckin' With My Head (Mountain Dew Rock)," the trancy acoustic "Blackhole," and the gently sardonic folk-rock of "Nitemare Hippy Girl." It's a dizzying demonstration of musical skills, yet it's all tied together by a simple yet clever sense of songcraft and a truly original lyrical viewpoint, one that's basic yet as colorful as free verse. By blending boundaries so thoroughly and intoxicatingly, Mellow Gold established a new vein of alternative rock, one that was fueled by ideas instead of attitude. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 23, 1999 | Geffen

By calling the muted psychedelic folk-rock, blues, and Tropicalia of Mutations a stopgap, Beck set expectations for Midnite Vultures unreasonably high. Ironically, Midnite Vultures doesn't feel like a sequel to Odelay -- it's a genre exercise, like Mutations. This time, Beck delves into soul, funk, and hip-hop, touching on everything from Stax/Volt to No Limit but using Prince as his home base. He's eschewed samples, more or less, but not the aesthetic. Even when a song is reminiscent of a particular style, it's assembled in strange, exciting ways. As it kicks off with "Sexx Laws," it's hard not to get caught up in the rush, and "Nicotine & Gravy" carries on the vibe expertly, as does the party jam "Mixed Bizness" and the full-on electro workout "Get Real Paid," an intoxicating number that sounds like a Black Album reject. So far, so good -- the songs are tight, catchy, and memorable, the production dense. Then comes "Hollywood Freaks." The self-conscious gangsta goof is singularly irritating, not least because of Beck's affected voice. It's the first on Midnite Vultures to feel like a parody, and it's such an awkward, misguided shift in tone that it colors the rest of the album. Tributes now sound like send-ups, allusions that once seemed affectionate feel snide, and the whole thing comes off as a little jive. Musically, Midnite Vultures is filled with wonderful little quirks, but these are undercut by the sneaking suspicion that for all the ingenuity, it's just a hipster joke. Humor has always been a big part of Beck's music, but it was gloriously absurd, never elitist. Here, it's delivered with a smug smirk, undercutting whatever joy the music generates. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Pop - Released January 1, 1994 | DGC

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 12, 2020 | Capitol Records

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2006 | Interscope

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2004 | DGC

From its kaleidoscopic array of junk-culture musical styles to its assured, surrealistic wordplay, Beck's debut album, Mellow Gold, is a stunner. Throughout the record, Beck plays as if there are no divisions between musical genres, freely blending rock, rap, folk, psychedelia, and country. Although his inspired sense of humor occasionally plays like he's a smirking, irony-addled hipster, his music is never kitschy, and his wordplay is constantly inspired. Since Mellow Gold was pieced together from home-recorded tapes, it lacks a coherent production, functioning more as a stylistic sampler: there are the stoner raps of "Loser" and "Beercan," the urban folk of "Pay No Mind (Snoozer)," the mock-industrial onslaught of "Mutherfuker," the garagey "Fuckin' With My Head (Mountain Dew Rock)," the trancy acoustic "Blackhole," and the gently sardonic folk-rock of "Nitemare Hippy Girl." It's a dizzying demonstration of musical skills, yet it's all tied together by a simple yet clever sense of songcraft and a truly original lyrical viewpoint, one that's basic yet as colorful as free verse. By blending boundaries so thoroughly and intoxicatingly, Mellow Gold established a new vein of alternative rock, one that was fueled by ideas instead of attitude. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 2002 | Interscope

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 13, 2017 | Capitol Records (CAP)

Those following Beck Hansen since the dawn of the 90s know that he can play anything. Anything! From rural blues in Son House/Skip James fashion to Prince-like funk, slacker hip hop, Dylan-ian folk and lo-fi electro. If the tinkering ace from California first skyrocketed thanks to a convincing blend of folk and hip hop rhythms (the inevitable hymn Loser from 1993), he will over the years tend towards more classicism with Sea Changes (2002) and Morning Phase (2014). He’s done a complete 180° with Colors. This thirteenth album from Beck certainly isn’t lacking any hues. A vibrant mix of psychedelia à la Beatles, 80s pop, contemporary dancefloor, and funk crossed with hip hop, the stylistic kaleidoscope is complete! The wide variations are incidentally so far apart that they will probably rattle some newcomers. © CM/Qobuz
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Rock - Released June 18, 1996 | Interscope

As crazy as its cover art (a Komondor running hurdles), Odelay confirms Beck’s genius as an assembler. While Mellow Gold and its hit song Loser was defined by its thrifty, lo-fi style, Odelay boasts a more luxurious production. But the founding idea is the same: combining the uncombinable! Sexual funk, psychedelic rock, lewd country blues, old school rap, wonky folk, flashy easy listening, Beck mixes, matches and unmatches! The samples are just as wild with a blend of Van Morrison’s Them, Rare Earth, Mandrill, Mantronix, Sly Stone, Dick Hyman, Edgar Winter, Lee Dorsey, and a few others… Despite these unlikely combinations, Odelay has its own identity. Yet another gem based on a healthy anti-rut philosophy. Indeed, Beck is not only a mad scientist when it comes to sound, but also a genuine songwriter at heart. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Alternative & Indie - Released November 7, 2019 | Capitol Records

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 22, 2019 | Capitol Records

When he exploded in 1993 with his brilliant single Loser, Beck was rather ahead his time with his fusion of acoustic blues/folk and hip-hop beats. In its wake he unveiled an even wider palette with his album Odelay, mixing sexual funk, psychedelic rock, salacious country blues, old school rap and flashy easy-listening, all interspersed with samples from Van Morrison, Mandrill, Mantronix, Sly Stone, Dick Hyman, Edgar Winter and Lee Dorsey. Later, he indulged in a more classical folk-rock style with his beautiful album Sea Change. At 49 years old, Beck is no less innovative, this time sharing the task with a five star co-writer and co-producer: Pharrell Williams. Initially, the duo only planned to release a single, then an EP, then finally eleven tracks. While Beck is an expert in sophistication with bountiful ideas, Pharrell is more of a refined, minimalist type. Beck opts for the second approach here. The result is a stripped-back sound drenched in melancholy, largely due to the beautiful ballads, both delicate (Stratosphere) and electric (Everlasting Nothing). The Californian plays the role of the relaxed hedonist (like on the sugary smooth track See Through), as well as toying around with auto-tune (Uneventful Days) and letting himself be carried away by a pop wave with a light groove. And to keep his fans happy, Beck stays true to himself right from the opening track, Saw Lightning, with a slide guitar, a rap beat and a vintage microphone. The real strength of Hyperspace is that it does not try to turn the album into a hit machine - something that one might have expected from a Beck/Pharrell collaboration. And throughout this crazy pop-soul-rap-folk-rap-R&B-rock record, everything is much more subtle than it seems. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz

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