I’ve held my tongue about something important for too long, and it’s time that hahamusic‘s loyal readers knew about it. It’s my civic duty to occasionally bring you hard-hitting reports, and also I couldn’t think of anything else to write about.
So I got Beck’s new album The Information (Buy It), and it’s not the greatest thing in the world, but it’s damn good. Beck always manages to come up with something interesting if not brilliant, and the new songs don’t disappoint. But oddly, the song “Cellphone’s Dead” (which has a very sweet Michel Gondry-directed video) sounds very familiar. Jazz/funk fans’ ears might perk up when hearing the bass/drum-line, which is an almost direct rip from the song “Chameleon” by Herbie Hancock, from his classic album Head Hunters (Buy It). Having played it in my high-school jazz band, I should know. I don’t really have any problem with this, since it’s basically just sampling. But this isn’t the first time I’ve noticed Beck using somebody else’s music, oh no. I got the Velvet Underground box-set Peel Slowly and See (Buy It) a while back and recognized the song “Countess from Hong Kong (Demo).” That’s because I had already heard it, as the Beck song “Beautiful Way” from Midnight Vultures (Buy It). Shocking! Are you shocked? Because you should be. The songs have the same chords, same basic lethargic pace, and well … the Beck song doesn’t have the terrible harmonica playing, but it’s still pretty suspect … don’t you think?
Beck – Cellphone’s Dead
Herbie Hancock – Chameleon (sample) Apologies for just posting a sample of this one. My file-hosting site apparently doesn’t want to host big files.
Beck – Beautiful Way The Velvet Underground – Countess from Hong Kong (Demo)
posted by Adam