Jeff Beck Jeff

As someone who was only familiar with Jeff Beck’s ’60s and ’70s output, I was quite shocked when I put on this record. It’s an electronica record. A really good electronica record actually. Beck’s guitar is still the featured instrument but instead of 12-bar blues bass lines, honky tonk pianos and Rod Stewart, he’s surrounded by massive drumbeats, deep bass grooves and cool electronic atmospherics. Beck is masterful as ever on the axe, favouring tasteful musicality over flashy speed and incorporating a wide variety of styles into his playing. Opener "So What” is a fist-pumping techno number with a deliciously nasty guitar tone. Beck lays some mysterious Middle Eastern lines over a throbbing beat on "Pork-U-Pine” and shows he can still play the blues better than anyone on "JB’s Blues.” A forward-thinking, smart record that’s also a hell of a lot of fun. (Sony)