American singer/songwriter Beck continues to shape shift in his new album Colors
For nearly 25 years, singersongwriter Beck has been keeping himself open to change, veering among musical styles — from the junkyard hip-hop of Loser to the swinging soul-funk of Sexx Laws to the crisp
60s rock of Gamma Ray — with the dogged curiosity of someone convinced his next discovery could be his best.
Now, the 47-yearold has undertaken what might be his most surprising shift yet. As the follow-up to 2014’s Morning Phase — a lushly arranged collection of orchestral folk tunes that won the Grammy Award for album of the year — Beck teamed with producer and songwriter Greg Kurstin to create Colors, which trades moody, slow-moving acoustic guitars for ecstatic pop melodies and slick dance beats.
Released earlier this month, Colors also feels like an unabashed stab at mainstream currency by an artist who not long ago was reaching for something more like timelessness. “I think we treated this album like it was one that a lot of people would hopefully like,” said Kurstin, known for his blockbuster collaborations with Adele (Hello) and Kelly Clarkson (Stronger). “It seemed like it might not be too weird to get played on the radio.”
In that regard the men have succeeded, with two