Beck is soldiering on, and we’re glad to have him back.
Beck has been messing with us for years. Just like that mate who tells you that your birthday present is “on order, promise” but never delivers, he’s been teasing us with talk of a new album since the Actual Dawn of Time. So far there have been zero new albums since 2014’s ‘Morning Phase’. We’ve been keeping a tally. But now, blessedly, he’s confirmed his new record ‘Colors’ with the release of its first official single ‘Dear Life’.
‘Dear Life’ is part bouncy pop banger, part existential crisis. The jaunty piano and sharp guitar riffs bring to mind bright colours and geometric shapes. It’s a big yellow smiley face. Or it would be, if not for lyrics like “you stole away like a thief, reeling from the sticker shock / of the price they put on your soul”. This is where the existential crisis comes in. There’s a relatable sense of having lost one’s way, or struggling with expectation. This vulnerability is key. It makes it all the better when Beck comes out swinging, bursting into a chorus of “dear life, I’m holding on.”
So maybe ‘Dear Life’ is a big yellow smiley face after all. Like the stickers you’d get after an injection, the ones that say ‘I was brave!’. Beck is soldiering on, and we’re glad to have him back. Liam Konemann