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Sea Change Enhanced

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Amazon's Beck Store


Image of album by Beck


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Beck has traveled light years from being pegged as a reluctant generational spokesperson when “Loser” metamorphosed from a rejected demo to a ubiquitous smash. Instead he wound up crystallizing much of the post-modern ruckus of the ‘90s alternative explosion, but in his own unpredictable manner: Beck's singular career has been one that's seen him utilize all manners ... Read more in Amazon's Beck Store

Visit Amazon's Beck Store
for 49 albums, 7 photos, discussions, and more.

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Sea Change + Morning Phase + Odelay
Price For All Three: £23.64

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Product details

  • Audio CD (25 Aug. 2003)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Enhanced
  • Label: Polydor Group
  • ASIN: B00006F7S4
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  DVD Audio  |  Vinyl  |  Blu-ray Audio
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,870 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. The Golden Age (Album Version) 4:34£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Paper Tiger (Album Version) 4:35£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Guess I'm Doing Fine (Album Version) 4:49£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Lonesome Tears (Album Version) 5:33£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Lost Cause (Album Version) 3:46£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. End Of The Day (Album Version) 5:03£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. It's All In Your Mind (Album Version) 3:05£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Round The Bend (Album Version) 5:15£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Already Dead (Album Version) 2:58£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Sunday Sun (Album Version) 4:44£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Little One (Album Version) 4:22£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. Side Of The Road (Album Version) 3:23£0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Description


Beck is really bummed. And if song titles such as "Lost Cause", "Lonesome Tears", "Already Dead" and "Nothing I Haven't Seen" don't make the point, his achingly sad lyrics and Sea Change's unerringly downcast sound do. While 1998's Mutations--arguably the singer-songwriter's masterwork and Sea Change's spiritual cousin--was filled with unflinching self-examination, moments of levity were found in songs like "Tropicalia". Not so on Sea Change. Beck's woozy, almost narcoleptic delivery seems to amplify the set's sense of ennui.

But sad isn't necessarily bad, and despite the sombre tone, there's much to praise, not the least of which is the return of producer Nigel Godrich (Mutations, Radiohead) who wraps Beck's gloom in a dreamy, warm blanket of soft strings and floating bleeps and gurgles. Like Daniel Lanois, Godrich is all about vibe, and even Beck's most bare-bones songs benefit from billowy atmospherics. That's especially true of "Paper Tiger" a restless, slowly building epic improbably propelled by a languid orchestra and Beck's expressionless drone. The inky black feel of "Round the Bend"--a glacially slow dirge with muffled vocals--may be the darkest thing Beck's ever written, not counting the very grim "Already Dead".

Whatever's going on in Beck's world, at least we know he's purging. All things considered, this may be better for his soul than ours. --Kim Hughes

BBC Review

Lazy journalism dictates that all reviews of a new Beck album must make reference to the fact that he is a 'post-modern Prince' and that his lyrics tend to be 'surreal wordplay with a hip hop edge'. Well, scratch all that because, compared to his last release - the sexy funk pot-pourri, Midnite Vultures -this is about as straightforward as he's ever been. If Midnite Vultures was his seduction album, Sea Change is his bitter break-up opus. Yes, someone has broken Beck's heart and, for better or worse, we're invited along for the ride.

Always invested with the ability to skip genres, Mr Hansen returns to the melancholy folk template last seen on Mutations tracks such as ''Nobody's Fault But My Own'', but existential angst is replaced by desolate tales of despair and loss. Anyone fond of the white suit-wearing, body popping art terrorist will be disappointed. Maturity, it seems, has taken its toll on our boy, but the stripped back honesty of his approach, with acoustic guitars tastefully picked throughout, perfectly suits the subject matter. The song titles tell the whole story; ''Lost Cause'' (''I'm tired of fighting, fighting for a lost cause''), ''Lonesome Tears'' (''Oh they ruin me every time'') and ''Already Dead (''Days turn to sand'') while the exquisite production, courtesy of Nigel Godrich, perfectly captures the desert-dry keening of crushed dreams. After this and OK Computer Godrich's must be the only number to ring if you wish your album to be as maudlin as a Sunday round at Morrissey's gaff .

Sea Change displays a cohesiveness that, again, defies expectations from the magpie kid. Only the somewhat sullen and perfunctory guitar trashing sequence at the end of ''Sunday Sun'' threatens the ambience. However, the rewards are plenty for the stout-hearted, with minute attention to detail in subtle instrumentation (check Jason Faulkner's tasty licks on the mogadon hip hop of ''Paper Tiger'') and arrangements. Beck's own dad, David Campbell (a veteran of the LA studio scene from Jackson Browne to, gulp, Aerosmith), provides strings that keep the hairs on your neck erect at all times; especially on the Nick Drake homage ''Round The Bend'' and the aforementioned ''Paper Tiger''.

Again and again, Beck's words reflect the cynicism born of betrayal and longing. Desert imagery becomes a metaphor forwashed-up, strung-out weariness. Yet, on the ironically-titled opener ''The Golden Age'', it also serves as a space where care can be sloughed off: ''Let the desert wind cool your aching head. Let the weight of the world drift away instead. These days I barely get by. I don't even try''. The whole album-as-catharsis exercise leaves the listener exhausted but undeniably moved. Its slightly self-pitying tone means that it falls some way short of being Beck's Blood On The Tracks, but taken as a whole this is as finely-crafted and achingly beautiful as anything you''ll hear this year. Bruised, but most definitely unbowed. --Chris Jones

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By John Tree on 22 Oct. 2006
Format: Audio CD
OK, I admit it, I was woefully late coming to this offering from Beck. His first few albums were in the collection, and then for some reason I stopped buying them when Midnight Vultures came out, don't know why. It was only with the release of Guero that interest was rekindled , and I started to look backwards again at what I'd missed.
Beck really is an artist to be treasured.
Sea change is an intimate, heartfelt record, and it's touch is light but it runs very deep. After the first listen, I felt it was OK...but as soon as it finished I thought I'd put it on one more time...and again....and again. It's one of those albums which just grows and gets better with repeat listens.
Criticisms? OK you can spot the wholesale lifting on a couple of songs: Paper Tiger is L'histoire de Melody Nelson by Gainsbourgh...and Round the Bend is almost identical in arrangement to River Man by Nick Drake...but you can forgive him ... if you're going to steal, make it from royalty. This is an album born of heartbreak that will heal the soul. Beautiful.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Ober on 12 Jan. 2007
Format: Audio CD
A beautiful, delicate, sad album that evokes the haunted, slow, rhythmic sway of some of Nick Drake's best music (I'm thinking Riverman in particular). Laden with swooshing, deep, warm strings and strummed guitar Sea Change is not for the Beck fans who don't like him to be unhappy. If you don't mind what mood he's in as long as he's still recording superb music, you'll love this. An absolute stunner.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Paul, Edinburgh on 23 April 2014
Format: Blu-ray Audio Verified Purchase
Having bought the CD on release a decade ago and loving it ever since, I decided it would be worth investing in the Blu Ray to see if the 5.1 added anything. So often these things really are just hype, but in this case I don't think there is enough hyperbole to do the production justice. It is fantastic. Just an absolute aural joy. Really like listening to a different album almost as you pick up sounds you hadn't previously noticed. The separation through the speakers is perfect. I played it to a friend who also loves the album and after listening to the 5.1 he simply said "you realise you've spoiled it for me now". Doubtless he'll have a 5.1 set up soon :-)
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20 of 23 people found the following review helpful By "tonyfordy" on 30 Sept. 2002
Format: Audio CD
Dont even bother reading this review - just go and buy Sea Change....it is an absolute master of an album.
Do you know when you stumble across an under-promoted album and you've got to tell everybody about it because you want to share a little bit of treasure with all your friends?
I had ignored Beck (Mutations/Midnite Vultures) after his Odelay album, which was enjoyable on its release but seemed to date pretty quickly. Imagine then, the sheer delight of hearing an album end-to-end that doesnt contain a bum track and makes you want to play it over and over again (just to check it really is THAT good).
Beck has stripped right down to melancholy and deep songs with an evocative early 70's folk style throughout. If you love the dreaminess of Nick Drake, John Martyn, Tim Buckley (Happy Sad) and Joni Mitchell's style, Beck has adopted all their highest moments and delivered an album that evokes the "floating comfort" which is called for late at night or on a Sunday morning. Listen to how stark and open it is when driving in the dark too!!
Stand out track for me is Round the Bend - an orchestrated masterpiece very similar to the beautiful River Man by Nick Drake.
As a result, I'm going back to the Beck albums I've missed in the hope that there is more of the same.....don't allow yourself to miss this one - you wont be sorry.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By C. Jose TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 8 Oct. 2002
Format: Audio CD
Having been a Beck fan from early '94 and having seen him on several occasions (as well as doing human beatbox onstage at Kings college in 96 with him) I've got just about all of his music to date. Beck was seen as a quirky comedic muscician when he first hit the scene with the genration x anthem Loser. In reality he is farther from that than many would belive. Mellow Gold was experimental, Odelay a polished masterpiece, whilst mutations should never have been released by geffen, it was meant to be an indie realease, but a fantastic album all the same. Beck then changed route again with Midnite Vultures and has now gone full circle and has returned to what I believe he loves best, the accoustic guitar and simple melodic songs that pull on the heart strings. For the first time in his career Beck actually puts together lyrics that make sense. And how. This is Beck's finest work to date without doubt, beautiful string arrangements, fantastic lyrics, haunting melodies, and thought provoking to the end. From the first chords of The Golden age you get the idea what type of album you are in for but nothing prepares you for what is to come. Lyrics such as "Maybe you're a lost cause" "How can this love ever change inside of me" and "Already dead" let you know just how much of a break-up album this is. Favourites from the album, well, to many to chose but Lost Cause, Round the Bend and the spine chilling Lonsesome Tears are the real highlights, Little One is slightly heavier than the rest of the album as is Sunday Sun, but by no means out of place. If you enjoyed songs like "Nobodys Fault but my own, We Sing Again, Brother and One Of these days" you will love this album. There's even a version of the 7" classic "It's all in your mind" (although i prefer the simplicity of the original)
It will be interesting to see how he tours this seeing as Beck is seen as the ultimate showman.... He delivers big style here
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