This is a much more mature and coherent effort from the Beck-meister. With the hit-making Dust Brothers in tow, he delivers a killer album.
This album certainly does have several of Beck’s “go to” tracks. New Pollution and Devils Haircut are stand out tunes built around great beats and quite unusual but effective samples. Where It’s At has great vocoder action and a cool and catchy chorus. Sissyneck nails an unexpected country-funk feel.
The remainder isn’t quite as consistent or compelling as I had remembered. He certainly has curtailed his indulgences of the previous release (although Minus is decidely unlistenable), and most tracks deliver some interesting or exciting moments (such as the ‘chorus’ on High 5 (Rock the Catskills). But, overall it isn’t as spectacular as I had assumed.
The ‘highs’ of this album justify its existence in my collection. I am intrigued to see if it ends up being the best of the Beck opuses on my shelf.
File under: Expectations outflanking reality