The mad-as-Megan-Fox riff in the beginning starts my love affair with this (rightfully) Grammy winning release by Beck, his only studio album of last decade, to my knowledge. I quite like the mixture of electronica and crazy-ass guitar playing. It’s nothing new in terms of concept, but the execution is another thing already. It surprises me how despite the fact that he has been playing for some 40 years, his playing is still fresher and more original than 99pc of the guitar players around today. I’d put him in the same league of musicians as Tim Bogert and Jon Lord, brilliant and original players who due to some curious twist(s) of fate, haven’t been as influential as they ideally should have been.
This album is highly reminiscent (but much better) than John Frusciante‘s A Sphere in the Heart of Silence, which mashes up electronica and guitar. Damn, I’d like to do this someday, as a bass player. Oh, hold on, we already have Squarepusher. The standout feature of this album (besides the guitar playing, of course), is the electronic drums, which are quite fantastic in that they are simple grooves, but have a stomping hard rock quality that works very well indeed.
The mad-as-Megan-Fox riff in the beginning starts my love affair with this album.
I’m at a loss of words when it comes to criticising this album. It’s simply excellent from beginning to end, and I can’t really point out many flaws in this. Maybe some Beck fans from this Beck, Bogert and Appice days will dislike his electronica expedition, but this is the first Jeff Beck record I’m listening to, and I’m quite badly hooked. What guitar playing! His expressiveness is very, very inspiring. He does absolutely mental things with the whammy bar. Hear “Grease Monkey”, or his Indian stylings on “Trouble Man” and “Plan B” and little other bits nearly everywhere else. Simply excellent.
Hang on…..I’ve just realized what I don’t like about this album; it’s the trying-too-hard-to-be-seductive female voice heard frequently (and irritatingly) on “Hot Rod Honey” and “Grease Monkey”. Oh, and “Line Dancing with Monkeys” is….um….bland as curd. And finally (after much thought), I’ve realised that this album is much too long, more like one and a half albums than a single one. But thats all I can say. This sounds very right
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