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4.6 out of 5 stars76
4.6 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 22 October 2006
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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on 23 April 2014
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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on 12 January 2007
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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on 30 September 2002
Dont even bother reading this review - just go and buy Sea 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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on 28 March 2014
The 2 channel music on this disc is in 24/192 PCM. For reasons unknown to me, I did not find it pleasing to my ears. But then I listened to the 5.1 version on this disc. It is absolutely amazing. There are sounds coming from in between the loudspeakers front and back, not just front or back. This must be better than the SACD version that exists of this music. For those of you who like music in surround sound, this disc is a must.
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on 26 April 2014
I've known this album very well having liked the CD for many years. The Bluray Audio was worth the purchase though. Unlike some Bluray Audios, this disc includes 2-channel and 5.1 mixes. The 5.1 mix is outstanding and uses all channels creatively. It's a shame this now long-existing format hasn't been more fully exploited by other labels.

I've noticed a lot of nuances to the recording that are lost completely on CD.
As much as I like the original album, if I'm honest it does tail off slightly toward the end, but curiously the sparkling quality held my attention throughout and I couldn't bring myself to stop the album before the end, which I tend to do with the CD.

Come on Universal (& Sony etc etc) pleeeeeeease release more 5.1 modern recordings on BD Audio not just classical, 60's jazz and 70's rock which may have had pretty dodgy masters in the first place.
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on 8 October 2002
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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on 21 August 2011
Beck's brake up with Wynona Rider spawned a pearl.

If you really just need to chill-out; become part of your Sunday sofa, keep the curtains closed, let Sea Change's surround mix wash over you.
The space around the acoustic guitars and vocals allows strings, loops and wisps of analogue synth to drift around you. A vast and involving sound stage.

Beck at his most fragile (married with Nigel Godrich's production) created a collection of modern folk songs that really deserve to be heard on SACD.
I don't need to tell what each song sounds like, you only need to know that it is so badly worth upgrading to SACD if you can find a copy that you can afford.
This version won't play on a regular CD player, so if you don't have the hardware, know this...
Sea Change is the reason you need SACD.
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on 12 January 2014
This disc is somewhat amazing in places. I felt like I was surrounded by sounds whilst spinning on the spot. It draws you in and never lets go. You won't be disappointed.
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on 1 October 2002
Beck has done it again and created an album that differs immensely from his previous work. If anything, it bears a vague resemblance to the more sombre moments in "Mutations". Sea Changes contains very conventional guitars and strings and most surprisingly, comprehensible lyrics. All are delivered in despairing but beautiful manner reminiscent of artists like Nick Drake. In fact the backing to "Round The Bend" sounds like a reworked "River Man" from Nick Drakes album "Five Leaves Left". A blissfully sweet album.
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