3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Another excellent album from a consistantly excellent artist,
This review is from: Guero (Audio CD)
Guero has received generally strong reviews. People have often mentioned how it harks back to the era of Odelay, but in Guero he has created something that I have found to be new and very unlike Odelay. The strong opener E-Pro sounds like the beginning of a danceable and uncompromising rock album, yet it blends and blends well into the unusual and joyous hip- hop track Que Onda Guero, filled with horn samples and shouting. Then another twist with the short Computer Gamey introduction to Girl, which soon emerges as a wonderful acoustic-ish sing along, with a creepy and ghostly narrative.
These changes in style continue throughout the album, but they blend so well together because they often maintain a strong rhythm. Missing sees Beck singing more clearly than ever before and the strong bossa nova rhythm is maintained throughout Missing, making the sparse funkiness of Black Tambourine seem a natural follow up. The Spanish sounds continue with Earthquake Weather which also melds hip hop and pop and Money Mark on the Organ.
The terse Hell Yes is funky, but is much simpler than the layered tracks of Midnite Vultures. Christina Ricci's Japanese vocals add charm. The album becomes quite subtle for the next few tracks, but doesn't dip in quality- the epic Broken Drum, the countrified and danceable Scarecrow, the toe tapping Go It Alone and the death march of Farewell Ride. A car engine starts up beginning Rental Car. It starts out quite rocky and then leads to it's amazing, somewhat baroque yeah, yeah, yeah chorus with clavinet. As if it could get no better, you hear Petra Haden's quirky and cheerful vocals. The track stops quite abruptly for the reflective and prayer- like Emergency Exit. The following two bonus tracks, Send A Message to Her and Chain Reaction are pretty different covering 60's pop and folk hop to anthemic bonus noise. Try to get a listen of Clap Hands, the weird hip- hop bonus track for Japan and the Guero DVD.
Guero is an album to enjoy and get a little bit lost in, an album to play to other people or in the car because it's exciting and interesting. The artwork by Marcel Dzama is good too. It might not be a good comparison for Guero, but try to imagine a radio that has overnight been possessed by sharks, Los Angeles, Japan, cowboys, ghosts both sad and happy, game boys, ice lollies and spacemen. Then when you turn it on in the morning you hear a variety that radio stations often promise. It's not like a Beck "best of", but it is very good.