Sea Change

Sea Change

4.8 15
by Beck
     
 

Nearly a decade after he announced himself with the slacker anthem "Loser," Beck Hansen has become one of the most prolific, talented, and well-rounded artists of his generation. Artistic development is a rarity in an age of prefab teenypop, predictable rap, and recycled rock clichés, so Beck, who's delved into country, hip-hop, psychedelic rock, funk, tropicalia, and… See more details below

Overview

Nearly a decade after he announced himself with the slacker anthem "Loser," Beck Hansen has become one of the most prolific, talented, and well-rounded artists of his generation. Artistic development is a rarity in an age of prefab teenypop, predictable rap, and recycled rock clichés, so Beck, who's delved into country, hip-hop, psychedelic rock, funk, tropicalia, and more, is a true standout. But nothing he's done -- not his stripped-down 1994 album One Foot in the Grave or the relatively straight-ahead Mutations -- foreshadowed the soul-baring, artifice-free tack of Sea Change, a sincere, folk-based album spun around breakup songs of the saddest order. Lyrically, the heartbroken Beck douses his beer with tears, sadly admitting that "Baby, I'm a lost cause" ("Lost Cause") and "It's only lies that I'm livin'/it's only tears that I'm cryin'/It's only you that I'm losin'/I guess I'm doin' fine" ("Guess I'm Doin' Fine"). The undecorated lyrics belie a wealth of winning musical touchstones. The lush strings, gorgeous guitar picking, and aching delivery of Nick Drake figure into "Round the Bend" and "Already Dead," while confessional sob singers such as the Red House Painters' Mark Kozelek, Mark Eitzel, and Jeff Buckley inform "Nothing I Haven't Seen" and "All in Your Mind." Beck's intimate delivery makes the songs ring true, casting them in stark relief to the raunchy, Prince-ly funk of 1999's Midnite Vultures. Beck can't, however, keep his upper lip stiff throughout: With its swooning strings, slithery bass line, and funky guitar licks, "Paper Tiger" echoes Serge Gainsbourg's lascivious "Melody." But mostly, Sea Change finds our little musical wunderkind with a bruised heart and soul -- and the daring and artistic wherewithal to make something useful of it.

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Editorial Reviews

Rolling Stone - David Fricke
Sea Change is... the real thing -- a perfect treasure of soft, spangled woe sung with a heavy open heart. It's the best album Beck has ever made.
Spin Magazine - Will Hermes
Ever since Odelay's misleadingly titled "Jack-Ass," Beck's been trying to capture the spiritual fatigue underlying his snarky superhit "Loser." Sea Change nails it just when we could all use a reflective time out. (9)
Blender - RJ Smith
This is folk gone perverse, like a harmonica dipped in Vaseline.

Product Details

Release Date:
09/24/2002
Label:
Geffen Records
UPC:
0606949339326
catalogNumber:
493393
Rank:
340

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Beck   Primary Artist,Synthesizer,Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Piano,Harmonica,Percussion,Orchestra Bells,Electric Guitar,Keyboards,Vocals,Background Vocals,Wurlitzer
Nigel Godrich   Synthesizer,Percussion,Keyboards
Roger Manning   Synthesizer,Piano,Banjo,Percussion,Harmonium,Background Vocals,Clavinet,Wurlitzer,Indian Banjo,Orchestra Bells
Smokey Hormel   Acoustic Guitar,Percussion,Piano,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals,Slide Guitar,Bamboo Saxophone,Bamboo Flute
Joey Waronker   Percussion,Drums,Background Vocals,Beat Box
Justin Meldal-Johnsen   Percussion,Piano,Electric Bass,Orchestra Bells,Background Vocals,Double Bass,Electric Guitar
Jason Faulkner   Percussion,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals
Suzie Katayama   Cello
David Campbell   Conductor
James Gadson   Drums
Jason Falkner   Percussion,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals
David Campbell   Conductor
David Cambell   Conductor

Technical Credits

Nigel Godrich   Producer,Engineer,String Arrangements
Beck   String Arrangements,Art Direction
David Campbell   String Arrangements
Bob Ludwig   Mastering
Kevin Reagan   Art Direction
Autumn de Wilde   Cover Photo
David Campbell   String Arrangements
Paul Bishow   Executive Producer
David Cambell   String Arrangements

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