Beck - Sea Change
Published in 2002
First off, I want to thank my buddy Tobias, who reminded me that I hadn't listened to Beck in forever, a situation I quickly rectified. Tobias is one of the most incredibly talented musicians that I know, a multiple instrumentalist, and a hell of a creative force. His first album Flesh.Bones.Teeth.Words is out now. Get it.
Sea Change is my favorite Beck album. There is something so genuine and open about the album that it sucks you in and makes you listen.
Let's get specific, my favorite song on the album is Paper Tiger, an incredible mesh of orchestral backgrounds and one of the most underrated voices in rock and roll.
First, we start off with a tiny drum riff, followed directly by a simple melody line, sung quietly over a twangy electirc guitar. This is followed by a responding string section which is the defining sound, to me, of a Jon Brion production.
Future album project and fucking amazing album Extraordinary Machine, by Fiona Apple, introduced me to this aesthetic. Jon Brion is a pretty amazing producer. He develops an incredibly deep sound out of the contrast between pop instrumentation and orchestral instrumentation. Obviously, I quite enjoy it.
This albums power lies in the voice of Beck. There is something meloncholy and sweet about it at times and husky and scarred at times. The songs feature this well, giving his voice time to stretch over long notes, allowing the beauty of it to really come out.
I love this albums introspection, and the amount of time needed to really get into the album is so short that I would suggest that you stop reading this and just give it a try. Who knows, maybe you'll love it.