When You Lower Your Expectations: Beck Album Review

by Dwayne Sullivan

When you’re 13 albums in a storied career such as Beck’s, you need to take pause and have fun with the music you once felt so passionate about. Colors isn’t a genre defining audible masterpiece that will nest a place in your mind for decades, but rather Beck just wanting to put his own take on the pop music of today. Some of the melodies you’ll find packaged inside Colors hint of Beck pushing for chart relevance and casual listening for the commoner.

On my daily commute I was carpooling with a friend trying to absorb this new record, when she turned to me and was surprised that Maroon 5 came out with another album. There was an intense 20 minutes that followed of me struggling to withhold my laughter, “Adam Levine just never knows when to stop, huh.”

Although the Beck that innovated when least expected doesn’t return here, there is still a lot to vibe to when not taking the project so sternly. Beck’s vision for this LP seems to translate for the “easy to digest while driving back and forth from occupation to home” crowd.

However, Colors is not without its weakpoints. On the uninspiring track “Wow” it’s easy to pick up on the haphazard writing that would’ve had even longtime fans accentuating an eyebrow or two. It is indeed “right now” when you physically feel the quality bottoming out at a feverish pace.

Once more, there are definitely bright spots to soak in that make you realize the more simplistic tonality of the record can still add up to some ear-catching waves. “Dear Life” returns me to a time when Beck could revive your sense of place in the universe. The angst is still there, 30 years later, just more dormant than prior. The rough is always coming, but we’re still holding on for the oncoming monsoons.

Overall Colors is one of his easiest listens without too much to wrap your mind around— just a feel good pop record to keep the feelings of freedom and joy abound for the afternoon.


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