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CD Review: Beck

Modern Guilt

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The Deal: "Loser" releases his eighth album, produced by Danger Mouse.

The Good: Beck has always been great at taking on a retro sound without sounding dated. Ranging from synth to psychedelic, backed by plenty of funky beats and soundbites, Modern Guilt is just about everything you'd expect, with more maturity – at times he sounds like he's borrowing from The Flaming Lips ("Chemtrails") and Radiohead ("Profanity Prayers"). I don't see many, if any, songs on the album being commercial, but they have their catchy moments. He gets help on "Orphans" in the form of background vocals by Chan Marshall, better known as Cat Power. His lyrics remain introspective with hints of social commentary sprinkled about – most are poetic and open to interpretation.

The Bad: Another one of those discs that leave you wanting more. This one's got 10 tracks and clocks in around 33 minutes. Where's the rest of it?

The Verdict: I gave up on Beck a few years back. I thought I'd heard it all before and that his "shtick" was getting tired. Modern Guilt is enough to make me go back and see if there's anything I missed. It's solid from start to finish.

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