June 12, 2017

Beck - Sea Change (2002)


Sea Change is one of the few worthwhile rock albums from this millenium. Seriously, I'm rarely able to give a shit about any white people music released after 2000; nothing new happens and it all feels like uninspired re-hashings. Sea Change defies both of these gripes I have with modern rock music. The compositions are all folky, but the digital elements put this album in a world of its own. Beck isn't the only artist to do this, but there are few albums which match this more-than-natural blend of synthesizers, electric keyboards, and folk guitar. Sea Change is one of the slowest albums I've ever heard and this might be a turn-off or an acquired taste for some people--this was certainly true for me. The music definitely ranges into slowcore territory; I guess there are aesthetic differences between this and more traditional slowcore that prevent it from being considered a staple of that genre, but if you enjoy Codeine or Low, I can't see why you wouldn't love this. The album is essentially a product of Beck's then-recent breakup and the songwriting is as overtly desolate and depressing as you'll ever hear from him. The somber Nick Drake influence is obvious, especially on the second half. An album like I Could Live In Hope is more likely to make you want to kill yourself, but if you want a melancholy album to drink and think to, then Sea Change will be your cup of tea.

Sample

Sea Change