KXT Interview: Beck

Photo: Peter Hapak

KXT’s Brad Dolbeer chatted with Beck on the heels of the release of his 13th studio albu, Colors.


Interview highlights:

On how he knows when an album is ready:

It depends on what you’re trying to achieve with the record. Some records, they’re better left a little bit undone. I would say I have a handful of records that are like that. They’re a little rough around the edges on purpose, and that’s part of the charm. I think with this record, I had in mind to make something that was, you know, crystalline and honed and every idea was taken all the way to it’s end.

On the production of Colors:

I’ve always loved the way records sound and always been a student of that and gone very deep. So, this record is a culmination of a lot of years of exploring how records sound. And thinking of the idea that in the genre that I’m in, we’re always looking to hip-hop and rap music to push things sonically. At least since I’ve been making music, that’s always the one that’s always pushing forward. So, I was trying to bring that into my genre. No different, really, than what we were doing on Odelay. That was sort of the equivalent of it back then.

On artists that influenced him growing up:

I had many of those — at different times, too, and for different reasons. Whether it was seeing Prince writhing on the floor when “Purple Rain” was playing at the Fox Theatre. Or if it was, you know, seeing Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds play on their second or third tour in the states at this club just tearing the room a part. Or seeing Kraftwerk on TV when I was 10 years old, just not knowing what that alien music was. It just goes on and on. Or discovering Woodie Guthrie or Hank Williams. Music was sort of the playground of my imagination growing up.


Interview highlights have been edited for clarity and brevity.