[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/beck_1177.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:He's upset because someone misplaced his [[WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}} Becktionary]]...]]

Beck (a.k.a Beck Hansen, born in 1970 as Bek David Campbell) is an American AlternativeRock musician and singer-songwriter [[SampledUp with two turntables and a microphone]]. He first rose to popularity with his underground works, gaining a hit with his breakthrough single "Loser" in 1993. Afterwards, he earned great critical acclaim and commercial success with the album ''Odelay'', escaping the threat of becoming a OneHitWonder.

Since then, he has released seven more albums, his latest being 2014's ''Morning Phase''. During this time, he had become noted for the [[NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly large variety of genres]] his work takes in.

Not to be confused with Music/JeffBeck, Radio/GlennBeck, or [[Manga/{{BECK}} the anime]].

!!Discography:
!!!Home Recorded / Indie Label Albums:
* ''Banjo Story'' (1990)
* ''1992 Demo'' (1992)
* ''Beck, Like The Beer'' (1992)
* ''Don't Get Bent Out Of Shape'' (1992) - A complete demo album that has two different variations.
* ''Fresh Meat And Old Slabs" (1993)
* ''Golden Feelings'' (1993) - A home recording that is widely considered his first album because it was sold at early Mellow Gold era shows. Very strange experimental material, and a cult classic. Briefly released on CD by the record label in 1999, before being withdrawn due to Beck not being consulted on the rerelease.
* ''A Western Harvest Field By Moonlight'' (1994) - His first 10" EP. Although it has 12 tracks, it's considered an EP because there are only four actual songs on it - "Totally Confused", "Gettin' Home", "Lampshade" and "Pinefresh". The remaining 8 tracks are noise experiments.
* ''Stereopathetic Soulmanure'' (1994) - These first two albums comprised largely lo-fi, country- and folk-influenced material, quite different from what he made his name with. This was the earliest album of his to be released on CD, a week before Mellow Gold came out. Most of the songs on here are from 1992 and 1993. Despite being an obscure album it's known for the song "Rowboat" which Johnny Cash heard and covered.
* ''One Foot In The Grave'' (1994) - Another lo-fi, folky album. This album is most representative of the types of songs Beck used to perform during radio sessions, of which he did many that year. The album was reissued in 2009 with 16 bonus tracks.

!!!Studio Albums:
* ''Mellow Gold'' (1994) - The debut of Beck's famous [[AlternativeRock Alt Rock]] GenreBusting style. A.k.a. TheOneWith "Loser".
* ''Music/{{Odelay}}'' (1996) - Returning to the NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly, produced by Music/TheDustBrothers (with some contributions from [[Music/BeastieBoys Mario Caldato]], Tom Rothrock and Rob Schnapf). Widely considered his masterpiece, sometimes compared to ''[[Music/BeastieBoys Paul's Boutique]]'' due to being produced by the same team of Music/TheDustBrothers and Caldato.
* ''Mutations'' (1998) - A mellow album that introduced the types of ballads that Beck would be known for on Sea Change, although the album still has upbeat moments like the latin-influenced "Tropicalia".
* ''Midnite Vultures'' (1999) - Upbeat, [[NewWaveMusic New Wave]], SynthPop, and especially {{Funk}}-influenced, and highly danceable material.
* ''Sea Change'' (2002) - Super-depressing FolkRock, produced by [[{{Radiohead}} Nigel Godrich]]. Considered his second masterpiece after ''Odelay''.
* ''Music/{{Guero}}'' (2005) - A return to the ''Odelay'' sound and a reunion with the Dust Brothers.
* ''The Information'' (2006) - Nigel Godrich-produced AlternativeRock.
* ''Modern Guilt'' (2008) - Produced by {{Music/Danger Mouse}}. Highly influenced by PsychedelicRock and SurfRock from TheSixties and TheSeventies.
* ''Song Reader'' (2012) - See {{Retraux}} below.
* ''Morning Phase'' (2014) - A ConceptAlbum about mornings and a musical sequel-of-sorts to ''Sea Change'' (though not quite as angsty). Notably won the 2015 Album of the Year Grammy, alongside two other Grammys.
* An as-of-yet-untitled tenth studio album (2015) - On June 15, Beck released the single "Dreams" from his next album. WordOfGod says it started as a garage-rock album, but will be more a funky sequel to Midnite Vultures.

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!!Tropes demonstrated by Beck include:
* ArcWords: While they're more used in pre-''Odelay'' albums, a few words are unusually common in his WordSaladLyrics, such as:
** Plastic
** Cyanide
** Whiskey
** Mayonnaise
** Taco
** "Aw, my goodness," usually delivered in a falsetto faux-country accent (this one appears mostly on ''Mellow Gold'').
** "Hollow log" has always seemed to be one of his favorite phrases, especially in his bluesier songs.
** His song "Whimsical Actress", known only from a performance on a radio session (though a home demo is supposed to be in Beck's vaults), is loaded with his favorite words at the time, such as "mango", "hoffy dog" and "squeegee". These words also appear in other songs, but their use in Whimsical Actress is particularly funny.
* ArtisticLicensePhysics /BadassBoast: As part of Beck's BadassBoast in "In A Cold Ass Fashion", he mentions that he can "Squeeze the breeze" and "Smoke a pack of whiskey". He does the latter with JesusChrist, implying that Beck has these powers because he's a godlike figure.
* BunnyEarsLawyer: Known for being quite an eccentric guy (especially in his younger days ), but also has gone through so many genres and styles, being called a "musical chameleon", he's well respected in the alternative/indie music community.
* BonusMaterial:
** Deluxe versions of ''The Information'' included a DVD containing music videos for ''every song on the CD''.
** "Diamond Bollocks" is a bonus track on ''Mutations'' (hidden on the US release but separate on others) because Beck couldn't find a way to fit it in the tracklisting. He described it as "the wayward son at the Thanksgiving dinner who just doesn't really fit in with the family anymore, is the black sheep. So you put him at the end of the table..." Other versions of ''Mutations'' also include bonus material - UK, German and Japanese versions add "Runners Dial Zero", German Limited Edition has "Halo Of Gold" and "Black Balloon" in addition to the usual German tracks, Japanese version has the re-recorded version of "Electric Music And The Summer People" inserted in the main tracklisting.
* CarefulWithThatAxe:
** "Lord Only Knows" begins with a startling scream that is either terrifying or comical.
** The endings of "Minus" and "Sissyneck".
* ChurchOfHappyology: Beck was raised a Scientologist and is one of the more prominent examples. He's far from preachy about it, and in fact used to end interviews if it was brought up. Whilst he's willing to talk about it (if sparingly) this days, his accounts of his childhood remain pretty lacking because he leaves out anything about his religion (which took up a lot of his time).
* ClusterFBomb: Swearing was rather common on ''Mellow Gold'' and other early albums. As of late, though, he's been cutting down on the amount of swearing in his lyrics. Special note to the song "Mutherfuker" which is this deliberately abrasive on purpose.
* ConceptAlbum: ''Morning Phase'' is a concept album about mornings.
* {{Corpsing}}:
** The end of "Corvette Bummer," in which Beck starts [[WordSaladLyrics listing random items]] until breaking into a fit of laughter.
** He also cracks up on the song "Bogusflow", as well as several radio sessions.
* {{Crossover}}: He once did a crossover performance with The Music/FlamingLips, and the band toured with him on his ''Sea Change'' tour in 2002.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: A lot of newer fans of Beck feel this way when they hear his early demo work. The album "Golden Feelings", which is widely considered his first album, is a completely bizarre collection of home recordings, filled with mutated blues, country and soundscape experiments. A lot of people got into Beck thinking he was a rapper.
* FakeOutFadeOut:
** "Chemtrails"
** "Fume" seems to come to a natural conclusion after about two minutes... then we get a StudioChatter snippet of Beck's friend Steve Moramarco jokingly singing a {{bowdlerize}}d version of the chorus, followed by a complete GenreShift into NoiseRock with HarshVocals, which then goes on for another two minutes.
* FiveFiveFive: The number 555-4552 is seen on a payphone in the video for "Nausea."
* GenreRoulette:
** ''Mutations'' is a good example, with its combination of influences from all over the world - the Indian influenced "Nobody's Fault But My Own", the Brazilian influenced "Tropicalia", the blues-influenced "Bottle Of Blues", the Eastern European waltz of "We Live Again", the folky "Lazy Flies" and the straightforward indie-pop of "Cold Brains", just to name a few.
** His early albums, especially ''Golden Feelings'' have this, alternating from folk, blues, lo-fi, and noise rock.
* GrammarNazi: "In A Cold Ass Fashion" has the immortal line "I love you, but you don't know how to spell".
* GratuitousSpanish:
** The chorus for "Loser".
** The chorus for "Hotwax".
** "Que Onda Guero" has this throughout in both lyrics and voice clips.
** "Burro", an alternate version of "Jack-Ass", is entirely in Spanish.
* HiddenTrack: All his pre-''Sea Change'' albums (sans ''One Foot In The Grave'') have one at the end:
** "Ken" and "Hidden Noise" from ''Stereopathetic Soulmanure''
** "Analog Odyssey" from ''Mellow Gold'', [[JumpScare which is quite a shock after the calm "Blackhole"]].
** "Computer Rock" from ''Odelay''. Same kind of thing as "[[JumpScare Analog Odyssey]]".
** "Diamond Bollocks" from ''Mutations''
** An untitled one from ''Midnite Vultures'', which includes [[MindScrew "fast-paced drumming, static, a lounge-like synthesizer scape, a reprise of the drumming and static, and some slowed down vocalizations"]].
* IndecipherableLyrics:
** The vocals to "Sweet Sunshine" are so distorted that even 15 years after the fact, many fansites have different interpretations of the lyrics.
** Fans still disagree as to what the chorus of "Girl" is. It's either "my cyanide girl," "my sun-eyed girl," or "my sonar girl". The lyric sheet only says "Hey, my... girl".
* IntercourseWithYou: Pretty much every song on ''Midnite Vultures''.
* InTheStyleOf: "Paper Tiger" both sampled and performed like Music/SergeGainsbourg.
* LastNoteNightmare: "Earthquake Weather".
* LighterAndSofter and DarkerAndEdgier:
** ''Mutations'' and ''Sea Change'' are musically more laid back but lyrically more somber compared to their predecessors ''Odelay'' and ''Midnite Vultures''.
** ''Morning Phase'' is typically regarded as a LighterAndSofter sequel to ''Sea Change'', having a similar sound but being a ConceptAlbum about mornings instead of a breakup album.
* LyricalDissonance:
** "Girl", which sounds like a cheery pop song unless you listen closely to the lyrics.
** "Lost Cause" is a milder case, with fairly depressing lyrics set to upbeat acoustic guitars.
* MindScrew: "The Horrible Fanfare/Landslide/Exoskeleton", the final track from ''The Information''. Starts off as a song, becomes a British-accented weather report, and ends up with Spike Jonze and Dave Eggers talking like two really baked college sophomores.
* MinimalisticCoverArt:
** ''The Information''... well, at first. Each CD comes with a sticker sheet, allowing you to [[DesignItYourselfEquipment customize the album cover]] as you see fit. Four different sticker sheet editions were made and randomly inserted into the [=CDs=]. Beck said that he wanted some kind of interactivity in the packaging, with no two covers ending up looking the same.
** The front cover of ''Stereopathetic Soulmanure'' is actually an upside down, cropped version of a stock image that appeared on [[http://i277.photobucket.com/albums/kk62/kovats6262/lokko015.jpg many]] [[http://photos1.blogger.com/x/blogger/512/38/1600/459857/Toby.jpg private]] [[http://www.divshare.com/img/display/15168697-6d1 presses]], usually for school bands, in the 60s.
* MinisculeRocking: His more "indie" albums like ''One Foot in the Grave'' and all his pre-''Mellow Gold'' releases are mostly made up of songs two minutes or shorter.
* MohsScaleOfRockAndMetalHardness: Varies to the point that anyone getting into Beck expecting a single kid of sound will be sorely disappointed:
** Beck's earlier stuff tends to be higher on the scale, ranging from a steady 4 ("Loser") all the way to a very hard 10 with parts reaching 11 ("Mutherfucker").
** As a whole, however, songs tend to stay within 4-6, occasionally having heavier 8-9 sections ("Devil's Haircut", "Hotwax") or softer 1-2 sections ("Lost Cause", "Think I'm in Love"). It is always hard to predict what you'll get from Beck.
* MoodWhiplash:
** The ''Mutations'' secret track "Diamond Bollocks" is heavier and darker than "Static" or any other song on the album. It's even more pronounced on some foreign copies on which it isn't a secret and occupies its own track after "Static" without the buffer of silence. Whiplash also occurs within the song as it changes styles abruptly.
** Many of his albums (''Odelay'' and ''Mellow Gold'' especially) end with 5-10 minutes of silence followed by a frightening "bonus noise" that can sometimes be frightening. See HiddenTrack above.
* NeoclassicalPunkZydecoRockabilly
* NonAppearingTitle: "Rollins Power Sauce", "Whiskeyclone, Hotel City 1997", "Beercan", "Cyanide Breath Mint", "Atmospheric Conditions", "Minus", "Sissyneck", "E-Pro", "Earthquake Weather", "Emergency Exit" and "Movie Theme" among many others.
* OlderThanTheyLook: He is in his 40s but has looked about the same since TheNineties. He was 23 when "Loser" was popular, but looked 19 at most.
** His voice [[YoungerThanTheyLook is the opposite]], especially in early songs, in which he sounds like a gruff, hoarse old man. However, he was a fan of slowing down or speeding up his voice in those days so it is not always accurate.
* OneWomanSong: "Debra" is a subversion--the song is sung to Debra's sister Jenny.
* PerishingAltRockVoice
* PissTakeRap: According to the guy himself, "Loser". The story goes like this: Beck and Carl Stephenson decided to record a song in Stephenson's kitchen. He decided to start rapping, made up lyrics as he went, and the two got a laugh out of how terrible it sounded. When they listened, Beck started sarcastically singing "I'm a loser, baby, so why don't you kill me." The song took all of six and a half hours to record and produce, and only released it because his record label, Bong Load, pressured him to. And so, Beck got his first big break.
* PungeonMaster: When they're not WordSaladLyrics, chances are the lyrics are a HurricaneOfPuns.
* RearrangeTheSong:
** "Soul Suckin' Jerk". Originally appearing on the ''Loser'' EP under the title "Soul Suckin' Jerk (Reject)", the first and second verses switched places when it was re-recorded for the ''Mellow Gold'' album. Musically, the two versions are pretty distinct too - the ''Loser'' version is slower and primarily based around drums and bass, and it's a few minutes longer due to a lengthy instrumental outro.
** "It's All In Your Mind" was originally a ''One Foot In The Grave'' outtake, which saw official release as a standalone single in 1995, though the better-known version was a re-recording done for ''Sea Change'' around ten years later. The original recording was very much in the ThreeChordsAndTheTruth style of ''One Foot In The Grave'': Just Beck backing himself up on a slightly out of tune acoustic guitar, with the only other instrumentation being a brief overdubbed guitar solo at the end. The re-recording was done with a full band and had a more complex arrangement including keyboards and cello.
** The BSide "Got No Mind" is "Pay No Mind (Snoozer)" with alternate lyrics and the acoustic guitar replaced with electric.
* RecycledLyrics: In general, Beck seems to pick a certain turn of phrase he likes and use it in multiple songs written around the same time - for instance "Ziploc Bag" and "Corvette Bummer" both include the line "yellow cat laying flat on the road", while "The Spirit Moves Me" has "Phony lady laying flat on the road". Also, numerous lines in "Diamond Bollocks" are originally from the BSide "Erase the Sun". The line "Out On The Highway, I'm Doing It My Way" and the general tune of Electric Music And The Summer People came out of the One Foot In The Grave outtake Piss On The Door.
** A subversion occurs in Ace Of Spade which was recorded twice. The second version added a line "You'll be living, one foot in the grave" which was soon after used as the basis for the song "One Foot In The Grave" which otherwise bore no resemblance to Ace Of Spade.
* RefrainFromAssuming: "Where It's At" is often mislabeled as "Two Turntables and a Microphone."
* {{Retraux}}: Beck's 2012 "album" ''Song Reader'' was originally released not as a record, or a CD, or a collection of MP3 files, or as any kind of recorded performance at all--it was published as ''printed sheet music''. 20 tracks worth. If you can read traditional music notation and you have a piano or guitar, knock yourself out. Beck himself performed "I'm Down" and "Sorry" from ''Song Reader'' in live shows before finally releasing ''Song Reader'' as a record in 2014, except he only sang "Heaven's Ladder" and outsourced the rest to artists such as Music/JackWhite, Music/{{Fun}}, Music/JarvisCocker, Music/{{Sparks}}, among many others.
* {{Sampling}}: A big part of his style, to the point that he complained that due to crackdowns and massively inflated sampling fees he would be unable to do an album like ''Odelay'' again without having to pay huge sums of money for clearance. There's a noticeable reduction in the amount of sampling on his 2000s albums compared to the ones from TheNineties.
* SelfBackingVocalist
* TheSlacker: At first categorised as such because of the success of "Loser". Beck was quite annoyed by this, pointing out that at the time the song was recorded, he was trying to make ends meet working various minimum wage jobs and had previously been homeless trying to make it in New York.
* SomethingCompletelyDifferent: This being Beck, not only will this occur from album to album, but sometimes in the middle of a song itself.
* TheStoner: His early folk stuff. It is less evident on later work.
* SubliminalSeduction: At one point in "Loser," the chorus is sung backwards.
%%* SurrealHumor: Frequently.
%%* SurrealMusicVideo: Plenty.
* TakeThat: His first single, "MTV Makes Me Want To Smoke Crack."
* TakeThatMe:
** "Loser".
** "Hotwax"'s GratuitousSpanish chorus translates to "I'm a broken record/I've got chewing gum in my brain".
** And we can't forget his ''{{WesternAnimation/Futurama}}'' appearance.
* TextlessAlbumCover: ''Sea Change''.
* ThisIsASong:
** "Title of This Song" from ''Song Reader''.
** "Where It's At" has the line "That was a good drum break" [[ShapedLikeItself right after a drum break.]]
* ThreeChordsAndTheTruth:
** Depends on the album, as his post-Nineties output seems more polished and albums like ''Odelay'' hide it under attention-deficit-style {{Sampling}} and genre-mixing, but his earlier albums and basically any of his folk, blues, or punk influenced songs fall under this.
** Most of ''Sea Change'' fits this trope, mixing fairly simple song arrangements and direct lyrics about heartbreak.
* TwentyMinutesIntoTheFuture: "Whiskeyclone, Hotel City 1997" was recorded in 1994.
* UncommonTime: The chorus of "Blackbird Chain" jumps all over the place.
* VocalDissonance: Looks very baby-faced even to this day, but his voice is very deep.
* WordSaladLyrics: In his earlier material.

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