7 Songs, 31 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jeff Beck’s 1969 sophomore album doesn’t have the cataclysmic impact of his debut, but Beck-Ola is nonetheless a pinnacle of heavy British blues rock. Backed by a superlative band — Ronnie Wood on bass, Tony Newman on drums, and Rod Stewart on vocals — Beck unleashes a lethal guitar attack. He makes his axe groan, cry, scream, and belch. Save for Jimi Hendrix, no guitarist of the era was as inspired by electricity and volume. Rather than play it straight, the band gives Beck plenty of sweaty, tumultuous groove. The young Stewart was probably the only vocalist of the time that could measure up to Beck’s overwhelming personality, and he delivers fearless performances throughout the record. The interpretations of Elvis Presley’s “All Shook Up” and “Jailhouse Rock” are gloriously outrageous. While Led Zeppelin are now remembered as the unrivaled kings of heavy blues rock, the two extended jams on Beck-Ola —“Ride Pudding” and “Sweet Little Angel”— are as accomplished and ferocious as anything on the first two Zeppelin albums.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jeff Beck’s 1969 sophomore album doesn’t have the cataclysmic impact of his debut, but Beck-Ola is nonetheless a pinnacle of heavy British blues rock. Backed by a superlative band — Ronnie Wood on bass, Tony Newman on drums, and Rod Stewart on vocals — Beck unleashes a lethal guitar attack. He makes his axe groan, cry, scream, and belch. Save for Jimi Hendrix, no guitarist of the era was as inspired by electricity and volume. Rather than play it straight, the band gives Beck plenty of sweaty, tumultuous groove. The young Stewart was probably the only vocalist of the time that could measure up to Beck’s overwhelming personality, and he delivers fearless performances throughout the record. The interpretations of Elvis Presley’s “All Shook Up” and “Jailhouse Rock” are gloriously outrageous. While Led Zeppelin are now remembered as the unrivaled kings of heavy blues rock, the two extended jams on Beck-Ola —“Ride Pudding” and “Sweet Little Angel”— are as accomplished and ferocious as anything on the first two Zeppelin albums.

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