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Beck keeps it interesting -- and pretty clean

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Perhaps a bit overly self-obsessed?


Some violent images, wrapped in dense poetry.


Nothing obvious.


All clear.


Nothing obvious.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Does "confection of venom" count?

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that a few conceptually violent words are used, either with gentle instrumental tracks or as poetic non sequiturs.

What's the story?

On GUERO, his sixth major-label album, Beck lets himself loose in a playground of musical influences. There are Bossa Nova and Bo Diddley beats, Spanish-language lyrics, synthesized string sections, hip-hop moments, sensitive balladry, and a space-cowboy-folksy sensibility in stories told with a degree of self-reflection that might seem excessive to non-teenagers. With lyrics that are visceral yet obscure, the songs could be deep, or they might be vapid -- it's just hard to tell, and perhaps beside the point. Occasional violent imagery is defused by its obscure poetic context, and phrases like \"loaded rifle\" or \"confection of venom\" don't seem to be the point either.

Is it any good?


This CD delivers an imaginative and interesting collection of diverse styles and oddly powerful, if sometimes inaccessible, poetry. All of this is wrapped inside richly textured arrangements and perfectionist instrumental performances, sung with Beck's familiar expressive, adenoidal vocal stylings. Overall, it's a strong offering from an interesting artist who can't help but be his own weird and wonderful self.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the power of musical context, and whether the words "trigger" and "noose" (for example) seem more or less threatening over soft, sweet instrumentals than visceral hip-hop beats.

Music details

Release date:March 29, 2005
Label:Geffen Records
Parental advisory:No
Edited version available:No

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Kid, 10 years old November 14, 2010

Very nice poetry.

However, I like "E-Pro", which describes frank violence and drinking: "Shoot your mouth if you know where you're aiming" and "Heaven's drunk from the poison you see" are as bad as it gets. The worst track is "H**l Yes", in which "h**l" and "d**n" are repeated. Also, it depends on how you think of "Guero", which is slang for "white boy". After all, it's some catchy poetry.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 15 years old Written byNetGhost April 9, 2008

One of Beck's less imaginative albums, but still top-notch

Guero, which is Spanish slang for "white boy", feels more like a compilation of all Beck Hansen's different albums, a "Greatest Hits" per se. It's still a good album, and there is a lot of innovation. The headline to this review might be a little misleading, because see, all of Beck's albums are VERY imaginative with loads of musical styles thrown in there. The only reason this album isn't as imaginative, is because of the "Greatest Hits" feeling. As for the content, I wouldn't say that the violence is really a problem. There are a lot of things that are pretty subtle, such as in the song "Girl" he wants to take the girl, "where her soul belongs". And one major thing that is not mentioned in the review is the song "Rental Car" which is presumably talking about a prostitute. From "Rental Car": "She's taking me far, as far as a rental car can go" and "Hey now girl, at the end of the road, down where the reaper is walking alone, singing a death knell, clapping along, at the end of the night, that's the road we'll be on". Though these lyrics are substantial in what they underlying message is, these won't usually be picked up by a younger audience, and even if it is, the way the song is sung it's not in a way that glorifies the subject. What I say: get the album.
Teen, 13 years old Written byhithere April 9, 2008

For when you want weirdo lyrics to awesome music

This is a fun CD! I still can't say Beck is my favorite artist but you can rarely say that when you only listen to one of an artist's albums. My favorite track is "E-Pro" (whoever you are, I guarantee you will love it) and "Girl" comes in a close second. I just gotta say though that CSM made a mistake when they said the the language is "all clear". There is a song called "Hell Yes" that repeats that line a lot and uses the d word once. It didn't bother me (that song is kinda catchy after you listen to it a few times) but it could bother some other people, so I'm just pointing that out. Oh well, that doesn't relate to the CD. Try out Guero and you'll probably like it too! NA NA NA NA NA NA NAAA....