Jeff Beck Performing This Week... Live at Ronnie Scott's

Any Jeff Beck release is cause for celebration and this full-length live set does little to dispel the myth of his godlike stature amongst guitar fans everywhere. What's to criticize? All one can ever complain about is what song was missed or which band member might have contributed more colour. Yet as Beck rips through this fully instrumental set of 16 tracks, there's little to do except wish you'd been there. Drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, bassist Tal Wilkenfeld and keyboardist Jason Rebello hang on for dear life as the dark master steers funk, fusion, jazz and rock into his personal Cuisinart for jaw-dropping recreations or violent rebirths. His first official live offering since 1976's Wired tour, Beck teases with a career's worth of material, from the majesty of the then-progressive "Beck's Bolero" of 1968's Truth to more aggressive fare like Billy Cobham's "Stratus" or his "Blast From The East." His signature guitar sound intact, the backdrops for his aural sculptures are ever changing, ever challenging and always mesmerizing. Consider his reconstruction of Lennon/McCartney's "A Day In The Life" for the ultimate in musical exploration as only the maestro can deliver. Singers need not apply. (Eagle Rock)