Beck’s never written a bad song. While last year’s “Guero” was a combination of literally every element of music that Beck’s jammed into his records over the years, “The Information,” his newest effort, recalls “Odelay” the most, a little more fun, strange and intoxicatingly atmospheric. Nigel Godrich is on hand to produce—he did Beck’s “Sea Change” record, which was one of his best—and Beck shifts from electronic beats and hip-hop melodies to guitar-and-piano-based songs with effortless clarity. He started working on this record with Godrich before he did “Guero,” so that makes “The Information” three years in the making, and the ambition and sprawling nature of the album proves it. It’s a big, big record, fifteen tracks total, a road trip of an album that wears you out, in a good way. What’s sadly gone are the quieter, acoustic moments, but hey, we’ve had enough of those from Beck already. (Tom Lynch)
October 14 at UIC Pavilion.