BECK TURNS WORKAHOLIC FOR WILLIE, EMMYLOU, BJORK, AIR…

Beck, despite releasing a fresh album later this year, has been up to his hit-pickin' ears in collaborations with a variety of stars...

Beck will release a new album later this year and has recorded duets with country music veterans Willie Nelson – for a forthcoming Martin Scorsese movie – and Emmylou Harris – for a Gram Parsons tribute.

The album, which Beck begins recording this summer, is to be released on small US label Bongload, rather than Geffen, via the clause Beck has in his contract allowing him to record for other labels. Insiders say they expect it be more experimental than 1996’s ‘Odelay’ although details about the project remain sketchy.

A spokeswoman confirmed that the album would be produced by Nigel Godrich, who produced Radiohead’s ‘OK Computer’, and that it was expected to be released in the autumn. Beck has recorded a duet with Willie Nelson for the soundtrack of forthcoming new Martin Scorsese-produced movie, Hi Lo Country, based on an unfinished Sam Peckinpah script. It’s thought the song will just be used for the movie’s soundtrack and will not be released as a single.

Beck has also recorded a duet with country singer Emmylou Harris for a forthcoming tribute to Gram Parsons. The pair covered ‘Sin City’, from Parsons’ former band The Flying Burrito Brothers’ ‘The Gilded Palace Of Sin’ LP. And, just to keep himself extra busy, Beck has also remixed Bjvouml;rk’s next single, ‘Alarm Call’, which is due out next month. He has also created a new version of Air’s ‘Sexy Boy’ for use as a B-side on the French duo’s next single, ‘Kelly, Watch The Stars’, due out on May 4.

Beck makes his only UK festival appearance of the year at Universe ’98 on May 23 & 24 at Knebworth House, near Stevenage. He joins a bill that includes Tricky, Roni Size and Moby. For tickets, call the NME 24-hour Ticketline on 0870 1212 500. All calls are charged at UK national standard rate.

You can buy tickets online right here.