This is a Random Album Generator.
One album a day.
From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Sea Change

Beck

2002

Buy At Rough Trade
Sea Change
Album Summary

Sea Change is the eighth studio album by American musician Beck, released on September 24, 2002 by Geffen Records. Recorded over a two-month period in Los Angeles with producer Nigel Godrich, the album features themes of heartbreak and desolation, solitude, and loneliness. For the album, much of Beck's trademark cryptic and ironic lyrics were replaced by simpler, more sincere lyrical content. He also eschewed the heavy sampling of his previous albums for live instrumentation. Beck cited the breakup with his longtime girlfriend as the major influence on the album. Sea Change peaked at number 8 on the Billboard 200, later being certified gold in 2005 by the RIAA. It was met with favorable responses from critics, who considered Beck's transition from sonically experimental work to emotionally charged balladry to be successful and convincing. The album later appeared in many publications' lists of the best albums of the 2000s, and it remains one of Beck's best-reviewed recordings."Lost Cause" and "Guess I'm Doing Fine" were released as promotional-only singles.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.32

Votes

12164
Genres
Rock
Folk

Reviews

Like a review? Give it a thumb up to help us display relevant reviews!
Sort by: Top Date
View Author
Wed May 19 2021
4

Beck is sad. Sad Beck make song. Good time listen, feel bad for Beck. Golden Age, Lost Cause, and Round the Bend were great tracks.

👍
View Author
Sat Feb 27 2021
5

Man what a beautiful album. The guitar playing is superb, Beck’s voice is on point and I love the lushness of the strings. The sadness is palpable here and I don’t know if this is an album that I can come back to often for that reason. But I do love this record. Favorite song: It’s All In Your Mind Least favorite song: Little One (I guess)

👍
View Author
Tue Oct 05 2021
3

I refreshed the page and it ate my review, so you get bullet points this time: • I just yesterday said I want my downer albums to at least thrash about a bit before collapsing under the weight of the world, so I appreciate that Sea Change has a little bit of that going on. • "Break up with Beck" produces solid results for a sad sack LP, although not as good as "introduce Trent Reznor to heroin." • This thing is way too long. Beck adheres to a "mope around with an acoustic guitar > introduce strings, maybe some synth > get all spacey in the closing seconds" flowchart far too closely here. • By the time he's singing "It's nothing that I haven't seen before" around the halfway point, I feel like I'm being pranked, except the only funny gag Sea Change has to offer is on Sunday Sun, where the little scamp seems to have recorded his verses with an Ed, Edd, n Eddy-sized Jawbreaker in his mouth. It's fine. I would've preferred Odelay, but of course I would. Key Tracks: The Golden Age

👍
View Author
Wed May 12 2021
2

While I didn’t hate the album, nothing held my interest.

👍
View Author
Thu Mar 04 2021
5

I love Beck. I never know what to expect, but it always sounds like him but never repetitive or boring

👍
View Author
Mon Jan 18 2021
5

I feel like this album is from the point of view of Major Tom, stuck out in space by himself after communication is lost from NASA, From David Bowe's song Space Oddity.

👍
View Author
Wed Jul 28 2021
5

Beck is one of my favorite artists so far and it was great to hear something a little more serious from him. Great stuff!

👍
View Author
Fri Sep 25 2020
5

A little somber but excellent lyrics and songwriting

👍
View Author
Fri May 28 2021
5

Incredible vibes, and such a different sound from what I'm used to from Beck, especially the albums preceeding this. That being said, can't go wrong with this sound.

👍
View Author
Mon Jun 07 2021
5

Know it all too well. Can’t listen to it right now.

👍
View Author
Wed Nov 10 2021
5

I love this album so much. My first breakup album in 2017. It was perfect. Still perfect to this day.

👍
View Author
Tue Dec 14 2021
5

So different from what I expected with my knowledge of other Beck albums. A much more calm, melancholy vibe and feeling with slower tracks and more ambience. The riff-driven songs I know from Beck are replaced with swelling strings, soft acoustic guitars, and more feeling and emotional impact. What a cool album and a pleasant and welcome surprise.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 19 2022
5

Much like everyone listening to this record for the first time, I was expecting Beck's jokey, white-boy self. I was not expecting a genuine and deeply personal-sounding record. A similar vibe, in my mind, to "You Want It Darker" by Leonard Cohen: a record that I don't feel like I'm getting everything on first listen, and really want to sit down with and explore the layers. If I ever get my heart broken again, think this is the first record I'll look for. Favorite tracks: "Guess I'm Doing Fine", "Sunday Sun", "End Of the Day"

👍
View Author
Sat Apr 09 2022
5

Super tranquille et mélancolique, mais tellement bien fait. Les arrangements sont superbes et ce n’est jamais mou.

👍
View Author
Fri Jun 18 2021
4

This album is the equivalent of like, doing the bare minimum extremely well. Production is PHENOMENAL and songwriting is primitive. It’s less impressive than his previous outings like mellow gold and odelay but some bangers hit the feels pretty well. Beck has no edge on sea change but he’s riding sad boy wave pretty well.

👍
View Author
Wed Dec 01 2021
3

I was a huge Beck fan beginning with "Mellow Gold" and I must admit that this was the first album of his that was a disappointment to me. From this point on in his career I started to slowly drift away from him. My difficulty with this album stems from a couple things: 1) him reigning in his lyrics to be more conventional, and 2) the consistently depressed tone. I get it, he's human and went through a shitty ordeal with his girlfriend. It's completely understandable that he would want to express his feelings about that, but perhaps for a song or two, rather than a whole album. I don't expect him to be some kind of postmodern cartoon his whole career but what I always liked about him was the way he was able to balance a wide variety of emotions on an album, or even in a single song. Another thing that bugs me on this album is illustrated by "It's all in your mind," which is a remake of a much older song of his. I love the original version of that song but somehow the dour tone of "Sea Change" as a whole kind of drags it down - takes some of the raw spirit out of it somehow. I can enjoy these melancholy types of songs of his in a different context but as they are presented here all together I find them slightly off-putting. I think what it really comes down to is this: I find this album to be too pretty, too perfect. The lush string arrangements being a good example of this. I can understand why he would want to try for something like this as an artist; to carefully craft something pristine and beautiful, but to me it lacks the loose soul he so naturally exuded in the past. It's like if your girlfriend never really put on makeup or dressed in fancy clothes and then suddenly one day she decided to get this total makeover and buy a Versace evening gown. It's not that she wouldn't look beautiful, but it would come as quite a shock, and somehow it wouldn't feel like "her." However, one thing I didn't have back when it originally came out was a really good pair of headphones to listen this album with. I do now and must say the sound of the album is pretty exquisite. If I separate it from my own personal baggage and hang ups I can at least appreciate it as a sonic achievement. For an album of his that has similar qualities but isn't so completely emotionally bogged down and humorless, try "Mutations" - it is more balanced, and I believe, a superior album.

👍
View Author
Fri Jun 18 2021
5

Melancholy Beck. Great stuff.

👍
View Author
Tue Dec 28 2021
5

I’m not the biggest Beck fan. I like most of his stuff and admire how diverse his music is. But man… I love this album. I come back it occasionally when I’m in a certain mood. Great wallowing in sadness album. Great production by Nigel Godrich.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 12 2022
5

Congratulations Beck, you sad Scientologist son of a so-and-so, you made one of the best albums of the early 2000s.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 12 2022
5

Gently pulling my heart into the water

👍
View Author
Fri Feb 04 2022
5

Wow - so sad and so beautiful to listen to. Sonically fantastic, worth sitting down with a decent set of headphones. And a nice bottle of red. Turn it up and relive your most recent heartbreak, and cry just a little.

👍
View Author
Fri Feb 11 2022
5

I have a long standing love for this album - Beck does dreamy alt-country. "Mellow Gold" is my absolute fave Beck album, but you have to take the rough with the smooth there, whereas "Sea Change" is smooth sailing all the way. Fave track - "Guess I'm Doing Fine", maybe, or "Already Dead". This is very much a listen-to-the-whole-album piece for me, though, rather than picking out individual tracks...

👍
View Author
Mon Apr 18 2022
5

Got this when it came out and it blew me away. That hasn't changed with time. While it's a far cry from his usual near-mania - and may be lacking in appeal as a consequence - as a confessional album, it drives right to the center of me, and I hold it in slightly higher esteem than much of his other material.

👍
View Author
Mon Apr 18 2022
5

An album that lets you know right up front that this is going to be a sad, wistful journey. Opening track "The Golden Age" is an absolute gut punch, and the hits keep coming from there. Great soundtrack for driving through wide open spaces while contemplating life and how you got there. The strings! My god, the strings.

👍
View Author
Thu Apr 21 2022
5

Even though it is a real slow pace, the songs are well written, passionate in the right places, and nearly all of them have a hook that i really enjoy. If you're in the mellow mood, this is perfect.

👍
View Author
Tue Apr 26 2022
5

Can't separate this one from real life. This came out almost exactly when I was ending a long-term relationship. That then became a relationship again. And then ended again. So dumb. But this was kind of the soundtrack to that, so it's hard to be objective. Still, I think all of this sounds great. I'd been a big fan of Beck since the beginning and this was all sort of a whole new range that really worked for me. Great stuff.

👍
View Author
Sat Apr 30 2022
5

Like a warm blanket next to a fire on a rainy day

👍
View Author
Sat Apr 30 2022
5

Never listened to this album closely. Always wrote it off as a boring departure for Beck. Of courses was way wrong.

👍
View Author
Sun May 08 2022
5

I enjoyed this album a lot. It's serious and sombre, which I like. I like how he touched on deep lyrical themes. I also like his vocals and the soft instrumentals.

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 01 2022
5

Absolutely brilliant... reminds me of mellow Pearl Jam.

👍
View Author
Mon Sep 05 2022
5

Really emotional sound, the story of breaking up and loss flows through the album.

👍
View Author
Tue Sep 13 2022
5

I put this on when I am feeling down and I really want to wallow in it. It's not fun but it's so heart-wrenchingly beautiful. The end of Lonesome Tears goes on and on and on, climbing to the stratosphere, tugging and tugging until you can't bear it any longer, and still keeps going. Past the point of discomfort to a kaleidoscopic mad huge picture of loss and grief.

👍
View Author
Tue Sep 13 2022
5

I’ve long lived this record. Perfect on those rainy days. Beck is versatile and amazing.

👍
View Author
Thu Oct 06 2022
5

I love Beck. Of all of his albums, this one probably doesn't have as wide a range of musical styles. The songwriting was amazing. I didn't pay attention to the lyrics, but my guess is that this is Beck's version of a break up album.

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 17 2022
5

Fantastic. Beck gets serious and changes the trajectory of his career. Fitting name for the album.

👍
View Author
Tue Nov 15 2022
5

Modern production with nick drake melancholia, great. There’s no way the song Sunday sun isn’t a reference to nick drakes Saturday sun

👍
View Author
Mon Nov 21 2022
5

One of my all time favorites !

👍
View Author
Thu Nov 24 2022
5

How can such a downer of an album be so good? I know that heartache is responsible for many great songs but I thought an album of depression might be too much. Nope! I'm now listening to Sunday Sun, where a ray of light is piercing through the gloom. He's taken me on a journey that I'll have to visit again.

👍
View Author
Mon Nov 28 2022
5

This album made a powerful impression on me, probably the most I’ve taken from a 1001 album so far. I had never listened to Beck beside his song Loser. He really is a master of genre-bending. This is one of those albums that, looking back, I will associate with this particular time in my life. Paper Tiger is when the orchestra comes in and it’s stunning. Guess I’m Doing Fine is devastating track. His voice sounds country, and has an almost Bruce quality to it. It’s All in Your Mind is another spot I turn the volume up: “and I wanted to be, I wanted to be, wanted to be, your good friend.” Already Dead has to be my favorite on the album. It has a beautiful Celtic lilt. It reminds me of something Orpheus might sing in Hadestown: “Because it feels like I’m watching something dying.” I will be listening to this album for a while. I will admit that I was partial to him because his name is, no doubt, a cooler version of my own. But this 5/5 rating has nothing to do with my namesake and everything to do with a stunning and desolate album.

👍
View Author
Tue Dec 06 2022
5

What a perfect mellow album. Awesome production, mixed with outstanding vocals. Easy 5. So many bangerz! Too many to list, but here’s some to remember. TBz 1. Lonesome Tears 2. Little One 3. Lost Cause 4. Sunday Sun 5. Paper Tiger

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 09 2022
5

This somehow works in Neil Young-does-Goldfrapp kinda way. Love the orchestration, and it feels smarter and more polished than Odelay.

👍
View Author
Sat Dec 17 2022
5

I listened to this album a lot when it came out, it was tough not too, as it was when Beck was at his height of changing genres and sounds from album to album, and this beautiful record showed a matured and more personal side of him--and he also toured on it forever. It's been a bit since I've heard it, but it fit perfectly in on this cold Friday morning. Excellent as always.

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 23 2022
5

Listened to this one a lot when it was released. Still holds up. It’s weird, interesting and sad music. This and Mutations are my favorite Beck albums.

👍
View Author
Sun Jan 15 2023
5

His broken heart has allowed Beck to reach top form here and create a real masterpiece.

👍
View Author
Thu Jan 19 2023
5

The best Beck album. Period.

👍
View Author
Mon Jan 23 2023
5

Amazing album -- great production, songwriting, and orchestration...

👍
View Author
Mon Jan 23 2023
5

A perfect album, the last truly high height from Beck’s discography. Good stuff is still to follow, but this one is stunning.

👍
View Author
Wed Jan 25 2023
5

Ahhhh, one of the albums that saved my life. I'm not saying that listening to this album is therapy, but listening to this album feels like what I perceive good therapy would feel like. You even get to break shit with Sunday Sun. Except for Lonesome Tears and Side Of The Road, every other song is fully engaging. For me this is as close as Beck has gotten to perfect. However, Guero is my favorite cause it's just more fun.

👍
View Author
Thu Feb 16 2023
5

Beck is 100% my soft spot. This album is just one more masterpiece from him.

👍
View Author
Sat Feb 18 2023
5

This was the "breakup album" of my college years. It was the first time hearing Beck in a serious tone. "Lost Cause" and "It's all in Your Mind" really hit you in the feels.

👍
View Author
Sun Apr 02 2023
5

I didn't really like Beck when he was trying to be weird. But starting with this album, he moved into a more mature style with lush layers and more cohesive sounds and messaging. This record sounds like it was recorded during a series of sunrises and I really like it.

👍
View Author
Wed Apr 12 2023
5

Beautiful lonely morning listen.

👍
View Author
Fri Apr 21 2023
5

This album is not a Lost cause

👍
View Author
Thu May 25 2023
5

Very good album, I really enjoyed the songs!

👍
View Author
Tue Jun 27 2023
5

excellent album similar to cocteau twins heaven or las vegas it was very relaxing and i found myself liking every song i put them all on playlists that i love it had a very consistent theme throughout which could have been boring had you not liked the theme but fortunately it didnt take away from the album for me

👍
View Author
Thu Jul 20 2023
5

Sad. Orchestral. Layered. This album beautifully executes layered arrangements of strings with minimal guitar riffs to create a unique atmosphere. The record sits in a strange space that moves you through waves of depression and grief. While difficult to listen in regard to Beck's depressive lyrics, each song has its own purpose and feel. When listening, you could easily close your eyes and feel like you're immersed in a vast ocean landscape moving over and under the waves. Favorite Songs: Paper Tiger, Lonesome Tears, Lost Cause, It's All In Your Mind, Sunday Sun

👍
View Author
Mon Dec 06 2021
3

Beck gets dumped and all mopey. The songs are fairly similar in tempo throughout and kind of blend in to one. Maybe he got dumped because he was already mopey and this album was the final straw. I don't blame her. Best Tracks: The Golden Age; Paper Tiger; Lost Cause

👍
View Author
Fri Jul 21 2023
5

oh hello there stranger! even more beautiful than I remembered. Worth listening to in full! I love it so much, I may need to buy it on vinyl so I can hear it all the time

👍
View Author
Mon Aug 07 2023
5

This is a perfect choice for this list. While albums like Guero, Modern Guilt and Mellow Gold might be more obvious choices, Sea Change is a snapshot of Beck at a pivotal moment in his career. A departure from a celebrated artist's then-signature production style that proves he's no one-trick pony. Post-breakup Beck strips it all back to plumb the depths of melancholia and psychedelia and yet nothing here feels plodding or tired. String arrangements on Paper Tiger are incredible, which makes sense given that's what his dad did for a living. B side of the record introduces elements more atmospheric like Sigur Ros, harmonic like the Beach Boys, and grungy like Nirvana alternatively. I thought I would enjoy this but I didn't anticipate it holding up THIS well.

👍
View Author
Mon Aug 28 2023
5

Where has this album been all my life? It’s perfect. Prod by Nigel Godbitch. What a legend. Need to let this one sink in

👍
View Author
Tue Sep 05 2023
5

Spaced out country and sad, string-laden pop. A beautiful album with fantastic production. The music captures the melancholy fog of heartbreak. But the songwriting is so strong that I don’t mind spending 50 minutes with that tone. And Beck has a gorgeous singing voice. His typical style doesn’t get to showcase it as much.

👍
View Author
Tue Sep 12 2023
5

Really loved and connected with this one! I had not heard this style from Beck before.

👍
View Author
Thu Sep 14 2023
5

I've been sleeping on Beck. this is such a beutiful somber album. one of my favorite parts was when the left ear was an electronic sound and the right ear was and acoustic guitar

👍
View Author
Mon Sep 18 2023
5

Great album, really showed the artistic side of Beck.

👍
View Author
Tue Sep 19 2023
5

The orchestration is straight up yummy, especially in Paper Tiger and Round The Bend. Wonderful, chilled out vibes with more to it than might initially hit the ear. End Of The Day forces me to slow down and match its pace in a way that's really luscious. LOVE when Sunday Sun gets a little bit crunchy, it's so freaking fun. Overall a great listen, I loved it.

👍
View Author
Mon Sep 25 2023
5

Nice change of pace. Honestly surprised how much I liked this album.

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 02 2023
5

so depressing but exactly what I needed Good for him for getting catharsis!

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 09 2023
5

Classic album that I’ve played many times and now heard live. Quintessential folksy Beck, one of my all-time favorite artists.

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 16 2023
5

10/10 I will love Beck till the day I die

👍
View Author
Tue Oct 17 2023
5

Stone cold banger. Slaps from beginning to end. Often overshadowed by funkier/bigger albums by Beck, Sea Change is exactly that. It's so good they gave him a make-up grammy a decade later for a lesser album

👍
View Author
Mon Oct 23 2023
5

This album hit me like a ton of bricks. I'd never really listened to Beck before, and the album art (which looks like it could've been done in photoshop in about 5 minutes) didn't give me high hopes for the album itself. But I've been going through a melancholic phase and this was exactly what I needed to reflect on that and get through it. It's the rare album that shows up for you exactly when you need it. The album itself is filled with that bittersweet sensation - joy, sadness, melancholy, it's all there in Beck's voice, the melodies, and the quiet background. To me it captures the feeling of a lonely sunset drive. It's exactly what you need to reflect and get through a moment, and that to me is ultimately what a great album can capture. A good album has great tracks that you love to listen to, and is maybe full of them. A great album transcends that, capturing a feeling, an experience, perhaps even taking through a series of emotions and is something you turn to when you need to move through those, for whatever reason. This is that, and I would contend is one of the best albums on this list as a result. A true masterpiece.

👍
View Author
Tue Nov 07 2023
5

Love this album from beginning to end.

👍
View Author
Sat Nov 11 2023
5

One of my favorite Beck albums. Mellow and relaxed.

👍
View Author
Thu Nov 23 2023
5

What an amazing twist in Beck's journey. I have always thought his lyrics were his weak point and the creative musical structures carried things and here he strips everything down and it would interesting were it mediocre but he makes a beautifully realized album and doesn't rely on his strengths. Its a marvel. I bought this album on the day my daughter was due.. it had just come out... We played it on repeat when my wife was in labor at the hopsital so it will always bring up a slew of emotions for me.

👍
View Author
Mon Dec 04 2023
5

A huge and welcome departure from his earlier albums. Melancholy provides a beautiful counterpoint to the party music he's known for.

👍
View Author
Wed Dec 20 2023
5

Beck is one of the rare artists that has had 30+ year carrier and has been relevant with every album released over time. I think Beck is incredibly talented and i fucking love his music! This is a wonderfuly beautiful album ❤️

👍
View Author
Fri Dec 22 2023
5

I cannot believe I loved it that much. I've always recognized this album cover, but I wasn't that interested in Beck at age 6. Now, though? Hell yes.

👍
Load more reviews