Take a look at your favorite album's cover. The album cover to many often seems like just a picture of the artist, perhaps a nice looking one. Most album covers just seem to blend in with the crowd, however, true originals seem to stand out. Sgt. Pepper's
comes to mind, with it's vibrant colors and assortment of many people, not just the band. Jeff Buckley's Grace
also comes to mind, with a portrait of Jeff, mic in hand, ready to sing his heart out. Wired
is another one of those album covers, and is almost instantly recognizable by many music fans. The image of Beck and his Stratocaster seemingly moving at lightning fast speeds in a shade of blue stands out to others.
was Beck's first foray from his blues/Yardbirds roots into the world of electronic music. There is a lot of synth on this album, and Beck merges the digital sounds with electric guitar seamlessly. The result? It's your judgement call.
It's interesting to note that Beatles legend George Martin produced on this album along with Blow By Blow
. Bruce Dickinson, of Blue Oyster Cult Saturday Night Live fame, produced the remaster. It's also interesting to note that this is the first album cover that Beck has appeared with a Stratocaster on, with his others being Les Pauls.
The album starts off with Led Boots
, and it's very clear that this song is very electronically influenced. There is a main synth riff repeating over and over, and Jeff playing over it. This song seems to give Beck's guitar a more electronic sound. It's not distorted, but it seems to sound like an effect on a synth. Whatever sound, it sounds good, and Beck's soloing is phenomenal.
is a funky song, with a groovy beat and sparse guitars. This however changes when Beck rips into a distorted solo, which literally notes a complete change of direction of where Beck was taking this. No longer is this song electronically dominated with Beck's stacatto guitar lines as a linear note, this turned into a real rocker. It breaks into a short interlude and Beck begins to start ripping again until the eventual fade out.
Goodbye Pork Pie Hat
is a Beck masterpiece. It begins with some slow bends and is a step away from the previous two songs. No longer are the funky drumbeats and keyboards present, but just Beck and some slow blues. This song continues in this pattern. Drums enter, and Beck starts ripping it up. His way of expressing emotions through vibratos are present here, and you can just imagine Beck, standing on stage, just playing the hell out of this song, until the final cymbal hit fades out.
Head For Backstage Pass
is like the first 2 songs, but it seems like a disco song at first. With it's moderate tempo and groovy feel, one can definetly dance to this number. Beck's tone here is impeccable, and almost indescribable. It's a real treat and one of my favorites on the album.
starts off with some light ride tapping, then bursts out into a fast pace duel between Beck and... himself? He solos for a bit, then plays a rhythmn section. Lather, rinse, repeat. Overall, this song is very fast paced and a fun listen.
is the longest song on the album and one of my favorites. With a frantic lead guitar line, pounding drums and some very interesting hooks, this song is a nice listen to, albeit a bit long.
Play With Me
starts out with a synth riff and a fill. It then turns into another electronically oriented rocker orchestrated by the mighty Beck. Becks' tone is simply superb here, again. Near the end of the track, Beck begins to play fast. One begins to wonder how he was able to pull all this off without using a pick, especially getting the tone he is. This song is a clear precise attack of a solo.
The final track Love is Green
starts out with double tracked guitars, some soft piano and a relaxing bass riff. It's very relaxing to listen to. A synth-like guitar line comes in and adds that little more to completely fuse the workings of electronic music and a classical composition together. An excellent closing, and one of the best tracks on here.
is a good album, although some might turn a blind eye to it because A) it has the word 'jazz' in the genre title and B) it's all instrumental, if you couldn't tell. This may turn off some non-avid music fans from it. If you're looking for a awesome guitar oriented album that fuses a lot of different genres together, check this out.