Album Review: “Wired” by Jeff Beck
Jeff Beck live at Ronnie Scott's - Garibaldi1959New / Youtube
When somebody mentions the guitar greats of rock, we’re sure a lot of familiar names will pop out, then there’s Jeff Beck. One of the blues maestros that weren’t necessarily shackled in the sound, Beck wanted to delve into more experimental sounds. Thus came Wired, which was released in 1976, and featured the virtuoso dabbling in electronic music.
Opening the album is “Led Boots”, with a hypnotic circular riff that Beck masterfully maneuvers with his guitar sound, the electronic touch apparent from the get-go. “Come Dancing” follows, featuring a funk-filled progression that allows for a brief moment of relaxation before breaking out into a full rock ensemble. “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat” goes back to Beck’s beloved blues, simmering and slow but slowly building up into an indulgent progression. “Head For Backstage Pass” is more of a dance track with its incorporating groove, where the guitar meister tastefully phrases his notes.
“Blue Wind” picks up the pace of the second side with a flurry of lead playing and rhythm parts, all in a tempestuous tempo putting energy levels through the roof. “Sophie” is a lengthy jam that’s searing and intense, while “Play With Me” is loaded with synth goodness as Beck plays along with the main progression like it’s nobody’s business. Ending the album is “Love Is Green”, a moderately-paced masterpiece of rhythm piano, guitars, and bass progressions melding together that accentuate Beck’s synth-like guitar tone.
While Wired may not be up the alley for most of Beck’s rock-oriented fans, the album is the epitome of Beck’s flexibility with music, a testament to his superb taste that goes beyond the norm.