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4.4 out of 5 stars 361 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Three years after the critically acclaimed and heart wrenching 'Sea Change' Beck returns with 'Guero', that reunites Beck with classic co-conspirators the Dust Brothers. Beck explores territories uncharted by even this most innovative artist of his generation. Interscope. 2005.


Now that Beck has effectively exorcised his personal demons with 2002's hyperconfessional Sea Change, he can get back to the business of being a total fruit loop. We all know what that involves: videogame sound effects, random shouting in Spanish, and rhymes about popsicles and vegetable vans. And that's just the second track. Guero is like every Beck album condensed into one, a no-holds-barred collision of two-turntables and a microphone with the added bonus of guitars, bossa-nova beats, Jack White, lyrics about spaceships, and dumptrucks full of ideas all fighting to be heard above the ruckus. It's an exhausting and exhilarating listen with lots of peaks, such as the digitized power ballad "Broken Drum" and handclap-drenched folk freak-out "Farewell Ride," and more than enough to restore anyone's faith in Beck as one of the most chaotically inspired songwriters of our time. -- Aidin Vaziri
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 29, 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Interscope Records
  • ASIN: B0007SL1LW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (361 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,336 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 30, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Beck is one of the musicians that you can really call an artist -- he grows, experiments, and works tirelessly on... whatever he's doing next. "Guero" (meaning "white boy") is a glorious, fun album that runs the gamut from distortion rock to Latin hip-hop. It's like a glorious musical collage.

It kicks off with the funky, distorted "e-Pro," which seems to hint at the style and attitude of Beck's "Midnight Vultures." From there he slips effortlessly into steady rock'n'roll set with electronica flourishes, some blues, country, a dash of funk, and a bit of retro pop. A little of this, a little of that, mix and bake at four hundred degrees.

However, Beck seems to try to give "Guero" a Latin flavor to match the title: in one song he raps in Spanish, while he gives a bossa nova flavor to "Missing." There's mentions of mariachi bands, Spanglish and Latin guitars. With that new influence, he does a nearly perfect job of expanding his talents, trying out new tricks and tunes while keeping one foot in the territory of his past albums.

Beck has done it all: He's been a folkie, a melancholy lover, a rocker, and a dancefloor weirdo. Now -- perhaps because of his marriage and baby -- he seems comfortable as a musician, dipping back to his previous albums and his childhood in East L.A. The result is one of the freshest albums that he has made in years.

Given the dozen or so musical styles that get thrown into the mix here, it wouldn't have been surprising if "Guero" had ended up sounding choppy. But startlingly, it doesn't. Instead, the bits of Latin music, funk and rock keep the wildly different songs linked together, like a colorful but fragmented painting that is held together with bright scotch tape.
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By Q on April 8, 2005
Format: Audio CD
People who have been listening to Beck for the past ten years know that Beck's albums tend to stand on their own individually, each one sounding thematically/tonally different than the one that preceded it. The reviews here evidence this. Despite these different themes and tones, Beck's songs are always decidedly "Beck sounding," regardless of whether you are listening to a ballad from Sea Change/Mutations, or a high-paced, beat driven song from Odelay/Midnight Vultures. In other words, the albums are all united by a difficult-to-describe, but very recognizable, "Beck sound," regardless of whether that sound is manifesting itself in the form of jazz/funk/electronica, hip-hop, pop-folk, country, or some other genre of music. This album fits perfectly with its pedigree. All of the songs on Guero are decidedly Beck sounding. It doesn't sound more like Odelay than it does like Sea Change. It doesn't sound more like Mutations than it does like Midnight Vultures. Rather, it sounds as if Beck recorded this new album in order to capture the subtle similarities that unite all of his prior works. Guero combines the best aspects of all of Beck's prior works, and it stands as Beck's smart response to the people who like to harp on the differences between them. Clearly, Beck is a smart man. If you like his prior work, you should enjoy this album just as much as you enjoyed all of his previous ones.
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Format: Audio CD
Although Guero on it's own is a highly worthwhile release (I'd
give it 4 stars), the Deluxe version of Guero is amazing...
considering I got it for $15 on Bestbuy.com

First: The extra tracks.
1. Send A Message To Her
This track is a top quality B-side. Deserves to be left off
the original album. Very straightforward, catchy pop. Could
of worked well with the 'Mutations'-era material.
2. Chain Reaction
WOW!!! This is one weird song. A Black Sabbath sample, distorted
vocals, the whole kitchen sink. As a stand-alone song, this is a hardcore
update of the aggressive 'Mellow
Gold'-era material. It definitely would not flow with the
rest of the tracks on 'Guero.' (except maybe E-Pro.)
3. Clap Hands
This is one song that would totally have fit on 'Guero.' The
groovy beat is so catchy, I prefer this to Hell Yes. It sounds
eerily like that "Milkshake" song by Kelis. Best of the extra
songs by far.

As for the remixes, you get very competent reworkings of Girl,
Broken Drum, Missing, and Hell Yes. The remixes of Broken Drum
and Missing are the most creative.

I had no technical trouble playing the DVD (as other reviewers
have complained about.) The graphics are well done, but sometimes
tend to resemble an elaborate screensaver you see on
computers. The hard to find bonus videos are a nice treat if
you're patient. The photo gallery feels tacked on, with no audio to accompany it.
My biggest complaint is why the DVD has only the original 13
songs. At least there could have been the remixes on here,
if not the 3 bonus tracks. The remixes would have fit perfectly with the video art.
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Format: Audio CD
Once again, everyone's favorite funky Scientologist bares a slice of his soul for all to see, but only through a kaleidoscope of electronic spatters and freestyle lyrics, and to rather mixed response. Many of Beck's loyal fans have complained that there is nothing original on this album, that each song is only a rehashing of a higher-quality past work. But in my opinion, Guero is one of Beck's most subtly crafted, enjoyable works to date.

I really recommend this album to anyone who's heard a bit of this musical mastermind and would like to get an idea of what he's all about. Those previously mentioned loyal fans lament that this CD is like a compressed version of all past albums, but hey, what's wrong with that? Guero would be a delightful shot of flavor to any extensive collection or a great introduction to Beck's eclectic talent.

Guero could very well be a soundtrack to anyone's day. It runs the gamut from...

... bass-driven and consistent (E-Pro, Black Tambourine).

...to lofty and electronic (Missing, Earthquake Weather, Broken Drum, Emergency Exit).

...to delightfully upbeat (Rental Car includes a random Bambi-inspired la-la-la chorus, and Girl's video-game-love-on-the-beach quality makes up for the vaguely sadistic lyrics).

... to all attitude (shadowy Hell Yes is like a rusty robotic porn groove, Que' Onda Guero mixes car horns "honking like a mariachi band" with Spanglish shoutdowns, Go It Alone is simple but driving)

... to Farewell Ride, with its understated lyrics about "two white horses in a line," bone-jangling guitar and antihero tone, is probably one of Beck's best songs to date.

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