Beck‘s new album is called ‘Mutations’ and will be out on October 20 on the Geffen label.
The album, described by Beck as “space-age folk-rock”, has been the centre of a tug-of-war between major Geffen and tiny indie Bong Load, which released ‘Loser’. Although signed to Geffen, Beck is allowed to release material through independents, and he originally intended to release ‘Mutations’ through Bong Load. However, Geffen has won the battle to release the album worldwide.
Produced by Nigel Godrich, who worked on Radiohead’s ‘OK Computer’, the album was recorded live in the studio and is said to eschew the sample-heavy experimental style of his last album ‘Odelay’. It features more acoustic guitar and low-key electric guitars along the lines of his 1994 pared-down indie blues album, ‘One Foot In The Grave’.
‘Mutations’ will feature the full touring band that have been working with Beck for a number of years, featuring bassist Justin Meldal-Johnson, guitarist Smokey Hormel, drummer Joey Waronker and Roger Manning on keyboards and percussion.
A spokeswoman for Beck said the album had been finished in May. Of the style, she said: “It’s like ‘Deadweight’ (from the film A Life Less Ordinary) meets ‘One Foot In The Grave’ meets ‘Jackass’.” Song titles include ‘Cold Brains’, ‘Dead Melodies’, ‘Electric Music’, ‘Sing It Again’, ‘Tropicalia’, ‘Nobody’s Fault’ and ‘Diamond Bollocks’.
Geffen are not treating the album as a follow-up to the commercially successful ‘Odelay’. The company says that Beck will start recording his next ‘official’ album for them this autumn. Beck will once again work with The Dust Brothers on that project, which is due for release sometime in 1999.