Jeff Beck Group Reviews

Read my reviews of albums released by the Jeff Beck Group. I have not listened to enough of Jeff Beck’s solo records to make a page titled “Jeff Beck Reviews” and I doubt I ever will. (Jeff Beck was not a songwriter.)

1968: Truth (9/10)

For years, I’ve been telling myself and anyone who would listen to me that this was the first heavy metal album.

“WHAT?!?!?!” you say.

Well, hear me out: It has the loudest blues rock that I was aware of up to the summer of 1968 and, moreover, Led Zeppelin’s debut album is pretty much a direct copy of this record (albeit with better material and a better band). Jimmy Page just copied the format but made it much better.

But then, not that long ago, I heard Vincebus Eruptum and I realized that I was very wrong. That record is the first heavy metal record, as far as I can figure, this is the second or third – depending upon when Blue Cheer’s second record came out, as both that and this came out around the same time.

This is still a seminal record but it’s maybe not quite as important as I’ve long made it out to be.

Read my reviews of albums released in 1968.

1969: Beck-Ola (8?/10)

As a sequel to the first metal album ever [Editor: or so I thought at the time] this is a bit of a let down. It’s more of the same (though less diverse) with less obviously strong material. And the Nicky Hopkins piece is a very odd inclusion. The bonus tracks are a nice addition and it’s hard to see why they didn’t include the B.B. King song the first time around.

Though the songs themselves aren’t really notable, Beck is on fire. This may be the best ’60s blues rock guitar performance outside of Hendrix and the first Zep albums. Beck is much more forward thinking than Clapton ever was with Cream and, though he lacks the imagination of Hendrix, he does do all sorts of neat things that sound unusual even now. It’s worth it for the guitar playing alone, even if it’s nowhere near as historically important as the debut, or as strong.

Read my reviews of music from 1969.

At this point, Beck broke up the group for some reason, and the lead singer and bassist formed Faces. A few years later, he created a new version of the band:

1971: Rough and Ready (???)

I have never listened to the second iteration of this band.

Read my reviews of 1971 albums.

1972: Jeff Beck Group (???)

Read my reviews of albums released in 1972.