Universal truth: when Beck wants to be a pop star, nobody can touch him. The discourse that placed Hansen in the role of The Man around his 2015 Grammy Award win for ‘Morning Phase’ never sat right. Sure, the record in question may have been one of his more ‘serious’ works, but when aiming in the right direction, Beck is a pop polymath - a legitimate genius without peer.
He’s been promising a return to direct immediacy since the point ‘Morning Phase’ was announced. A second album would follow - one that played up to his mainstream hugging brilliance. Something in the lineage of ‘The New Pollution’, ‘Devil’s Haircut’ and ‘Girl’. If ‘Dreams’ is the first sign of it, then that’s no outlandish statement. Beck still knows where it’s at.
Like the lead single from the second album MGMT’s management wanted but never received, there are so many ideas buzzing throughout five minutes of sugar crush vibes other acts would string them out for a whole record. Tempo changes, pseudo drops, psychedelic haze and all out euphoria all hook themselves to that trademark guitar shrug. With a Hyde Park set to come before the end of the week, it’s safe to start hoping - will Beck bring the pop show to the big stage in London? If he does, the party starts here.
‘Dreams’ is out now.