The Information

User Score
8.5

Universal acclaim- based on 102 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 89 out of 102
  2. Negative: 5 out of 102

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  1. j30
    Feb 19, 2012
    7
    The Information is Beck returning to his weird side from Midnight Vultures days. The album is not as inviting as Midnight Vultures, but still a nice detour. I do love Nigel Godrich's production and album's "do-it-yourself" sticker album cover.
  2. Nov 28, 2010
    6
    His most inconsistent effort in my opinion. Still many standout tracks of course, notably Nausea, No Complaints and Think I'm In Love, but a few dud experiments too (Strange Apparition and 1000 BPM). I appreciate this album is an attempt to go back to the eclectic nature of his early albums, with an obviously more electro leaning, but it I think he was just that little bit more interestingHis most inconsistent effort in my opinion. Still many standout tracks of course, notably Nausea, No Complaints and Think I'm In Love, but a few dud experiments too (Strange Apparition and 1000 BPM). I appreciate this album is an attempt to go back to the eclectic nature of his early albums, with an obviously more electro leaning, but it I think he was just that little bit more interesting and that little bit more mental on the likes of 'Mellow Gold' and 'Odelay'. Brilliant in parts, less so in others. Collapse
  3. Sep 7, 2010
    8
    Following up, as well as straying from "Loser" was a tough enough move for Beck to make. But his next album, Odelay, is Beck's best album to date. Sea Change was an amazing yet downbeat record; The Information is, in my opinion, a mix of all of his albums... and thats a good thing.
  4. BrianF.
    Nov 3, 2007
    10
    Well put together, you cant make a better sound.
  5. VidM
    Aug 13, 2007
    7
    A few excellent tracks are held back by several weaker ones.
  6. RossG.
    Jun 8, 2007
    9
    This album is vastly underrated to the point that it's almost criminal. I'll admit I wasn't a huge fan at first, but repeated listens revealed its genius. On many of the tracks, Beck layers the sounds in the songs so perfectly you can't help but be amazed at his appreciation for texture and production. Songs such as Soldier Jane, Cell Phone's Dead and Dark Star This album is vastly underrated to the point that it's almost criminal. I'll admit I wasn't a huge fan at first, but repeated listens revealed its genius. On many of the tracks, Beck layers the sounds in the songs so perfectly you can't help but be amazed at his appreciation for texture and production. Songs such as Soldier Jane, Cell Phone's Dead and Dark Star (off the top of my head) among many others are classics. As a devout fan of his older albums including the overlooked Mellow Gold and the acclaimed Odelay, I can say with confidence that this album is up there with his best, beating out the previous year's Guero by a long shot. Expand
  7. JohnnyS
    May 22, 2007
    9
    Truly Becks best album. I read somewhere on this site that to find the best music in Metacritic you have to look for a rating in the mid 70's to low 80's and the more I look the more this rule holds true. This album will be unfortunately somewhat overlooked which is a real shame. It's worth listening to just for Nigel Goodrich's production alone.
  8. JamesO
    May 10, 2007
    9
    An awesome albumn. Phat and Phunky with brains to boot. Best Beck Albumn Ever.
  9. RyV
    Feb 2, 2007
    10
    I'lll put it this way, on my new mp3 player; I put on this album and the slayer discography ;) Ppl who luv metal can luv beck ! -but I bet most don't listen
  10. CoreyJ
    Jan 29, 2007
    10
    Perfection. My favourite Beck album ever and every track makes you wanna get up and dance
  11. RyanH
    Jan 3, 2007
    9
    I do not see how anyone could rate this album poorly. Especially anything under an 8. While starting off with the free moving song elevator music every song is pretty solid but it does seem to sputter out at the end. Nausea could be the best song of 2006 to rock out to while having real musical quality.
  12. totallycool
    Jan 2, 2007
    10
    I agree with that fairrate guy, except on one thing. Nausea is an awesome song! They are all awesome!
  13. MrK
    Dec 21, 2006
    10
    It's perfect. can't really find any flaws
  14. ReubenF
    Dec 18, 2006
    6
    Beck is the sort of artist who is always a bit patchy - he is experimental, so he is allowed to be. At his best in the 90's, such as on the 'Odelay' LP (1996), he could justly be said to be one of the greatest artists of that decade. Since then he has written some good songs, such as 'Nobody's Fault But My Own' (1998), and 'Lost Cause' and Beck is the sort of artist who is always a bit patchy - he is experimental, so he is allowed to be. At his best in the 90's, such as on the 'Odelay' LP (1996), he could justly be said to be one of the greatest artists of that decade. Since then he has written some good songs, such as 'Nobody's Fault But My Own' (1998), and 'Lost Cause' and 'It's All In Your Mind' on the 'Sea Change' LP (2002). However, these highlights are quiet, mellow songs, which don't quite recapture his best moments. Likewise with this album. A little disappointed, but still hopeful he can regain his funk. Expand
  15. WillT
    Dec 17, 2006
    9
    Great album. I haven't listened to much Beck in the past but the sustained quality of this album really impressed me.
  16. MrFairrateX
    Dec 17, 2006
    9
    There was only one song on this album that i didn't like and that was Nausea (probably the most popular song). All the other songs are TOP QUALITY BECK. Especially 1000BPM: best beat ive ever heard from Beck.
  17. MaxM
    Dec 14, 2006
    9
    There is no reason to give this album anything lower than a seven. Everyone of Beck's albums is different and it is hard to come up with an instrument that he hasn't used yet. This album sounds great. If you enjoy listening to different music, this album is for you.
  18. MH
    Dec 5, 2006
    9
    V. good album; the only track that's questionable is the last one ('Horrible Fanfare...'), which sounds a bit too much like Revolution #9. Other than that, it's got huge replay value, good lyrics, good music, and good beats.
  19. KeytonE
    Nov 28, 2006
    10
    A masterpiece. Subtle, intelligent, catchy, brilliant. No, it isn't as quirky and off beat as Beck's previous work, but that doesn't mean it isn't a quality album. To me, it represents a more sophisticated approach from Beck and he succeeds with flying colors. I cannot understand how any Beck fan would be disappointed.
  20. NickN
    Nov 21, 2006
    9
    Far more focused than 2004's "Guero", Beck is breaking new ground for himself. Too many people are concerned with Beck going back to what brought him to the top, but it's clear that he's more concerned with making music that he wants to make. His recent modern hip-hop kick is seen throughout the album, and whitewashed by Nigel's electronica
  21. JonL
    Nov 16, 2006
    10
    Possibly Becks definitive statement as an artist. One of the best uses of production I've heard in years (not that Godrich is ever slack, even on the more mediocre Radiohead releases post-Kid A), and Becks musings are as interesting and puzzling as ever. Requires much closer listening than his other work to fully appreciate, but the rewards make it more than worth it.
  22. DodK
    Nov 9, 2006
    8
    It's the real deal, almost every track is great and there's so much attention to detail, highly recommended. The stickers also look great on the back of one's car
  23. joshm
    Nov 3, 2006
    10
    The Information is a great example of Beck's unique style. He combines randomness with some meaningfull lyrics. It is a great album.
  24. RickS
    Oct 29, 2006
    2
    You can tell straight off the bat the critics don't have a clue what there talking about, take the NY times-"[A] darkly intelligent album", ahhh NO did you listen to the album, this album is anything but dark as$#le. Ok take The Onion-"There's nothing here that Beck hasn't done before", why yes the same old sh!t he's been trying to find, but you seem to give him a high You can tell straight off the bat the critics don't have a clue what there talking about, take the NY times-"[A] darkly intelligent album", ahhh NO did you listen to the album, this album is anything but dark as$#le. Ok take The Onion-"There's nothing here that Beck hasn't done before", why yes the same old sh!t he's been trying to find, but you seem to give him a high score. Haa I love Rolling Stone almost everything they say is so wrong it just cracks me up-"One of the best albums Beck has ever made", right, alot of beck fans might want to take you up on that. Well for me this album was like listening to a "band" that Expand
  25. LucasK
    Oct 28, 2006
    10
    I JUST CAN"T STOP LISTENING TO IT!!! The mix of instruments are well blended and it's unique and it works. But I was disappointed by the last song, unfortunately.
  26. DougC
    Oct 23, 2006
    8
    Beck's back! and that's good! This one'll be fun to listen to for a long time. Also, "Devil's Haircut" echoes throughout many tracks, here.
  27. Matt
    Oct 22, 2006
    10
    Beck's still gettin' crazy with the Cheez-Whiz. He's one of the rare musicians that is able to consistently produce a quality product. Definitely worth the money to buy and the time to listen and watch. The videos are hilarious.
  28. zzgreen
    Oct 20, 2006
    3
    Beck continues to dissapoint! He started his career with a few loud bangs, and now he seems to just be whimpering more with each new album. There is nothing peppy and interesting in his music anymore. No more jump. Just bland music, mixed with bland lyrics. Come on! Get back to the basics!
  29. TimothyO
    Oct 18, 2006
    10
    The Information is great and I like it.
  30. ThePilotisLost
    Oct 17, 2006
    8
    It is a worthy eight and has the potential for higher status if it keeps giving. I really do like where Beck is at with this.
  31. AlexA
    Oct 16, 2006
    10
    Beck has reached an optimal level of madness on this album. It is just perfect.
  32. Joris
    Oct 14, 2006
    10
    Of all of his releases, I enjoyed this the most. It's a no filler all killer blend of different genres, with haunting songs such as Movie Theme (that can meet with his fantastic "Broken Drum" from Guero) and timeless Beck anthems such as Nausea and Cell Phones Dead. Other highlights are No Complaints, Soldier Jane, I Think I'm In Love ... ah well vereything. Worth you Of all of his releases, I enjoyed this the most. It's a no filler all killer blend of different genres, with haunting songs such as Movie Theme (that can meet with his fantastic "Broken Drum" from Guero) and timeless Beck anthems such as Nausea and Cell Phones Dead. Other highlights are No Complaints, Soldier Jane, I Think I'm In Love ... ah well vereything. Worth you well-earned money. Maybe Beck's best Expand
  33. TyeN.
    Oct 10, 2006
    10
    This is in my opinion Beck's finest album. It just feels so complete, and not in an over-stuffed filler kind of way. Every song has a purpose, and together they create a masterpiece of musical craft. 'The Information' is a bit happier sounding in parts than the darker 'Guero', but it has it's dark moments too. It also has it's sincere ones. "Think This is in my opinion Beck's finest album. It just feels so complete, and not in an over-stuffed filler kind of way. Every song has a purpose, and together they create a masterpiece of musical craft. 'The Information' is a bit happier sounding in parts than the darker 'Guero', but it has it's dark moments too. It also has it's sincere ones. "Think I'm In Love" is one of the best songs Beck has ever created. Other huge stand-outs include "Soldier Jane", "Cellphone's Dead", "New Round", "Nausea", "The Infomation", "We Dance Alone", and "No Complints". I absolutely love this album, and even non Beck fans should pick this up if they want something new and wonderful to listen to. Expand
  34. GabeC
    Oct 10, 2006
    8
    As soon as I heard about Beck doing a 'hip-hop' album with Nigel Godrich, I got seriously excited. As hard as it was to imagine at the time, I knew it would be something special. And it is, for the most part. In fact theres absolutely nothing wrong about this album at all (except for 1000 bpm - I rarely admit that a beck song is truly just BAD). The problem is its just so smooth As soon as I heard about Beck doing a 'hip-hop' album with Nigel Godrich, I got seriously excited. As hard as it was to imagine at the time, I knew it would be something special. And it is, for the most part. In fact theres absolutely nothing wrong about this album at all (except for 1000 bpm - I rarely admit that a beck song is truly just BAD). The problem is its just so smooth and comfortable that it never really incites excitement or exhiliration, as previous Beck albums have. Luckily, after hearing about 9 of the tracks online before the album was out, my expectations were down - not in terms of the quality, but in regards to how much the album pushed the tempo (or didn't push the tempo, as the case is here). It rarely puts its foot on the accelerator, but in its slow pace is still very layered and gets more interesting with repeated listens. What it makes for is a smooth, breezy album with the same kind of homogenous feel that was all over Sea Change and Mutations (thanks to Mr Godrich), and some really nice moments that do stand out eventually. Elevator Music, Strange Apparition, Motorcade, Inside Out and Think I'm In Love are my favourites. In light of the variation and shapeshifting that Beck has already done, its totally reasonable that he can make a 'Beck-by-numbers' record and get away with it, especially since its so well produced and delivered, and since being straightforward like this is actually something he hasn't done before. It may be the middle of the road but its the middle of Beck's road and thats a pretty freaked out highway to be in the middle of. The trick now is for him to not fall into the trap of repeating this. I'm sure he'll keep it interesting by continuing to work with different producers (hopefully Tony Hoffer again) and by being his eclectic self. Then all he has to do is get around to touring Australia again and my life is complete. Expand
  35. benp
    Oct 8, 2006
    6
    Why someone would give this a 10 and then proceed to say it's an allright album is beyond me. With that being said I think it's an OK album for Beck. I can count the great tracks on one hand while the rest fall far far away. I have spent much time in the past week listening to this album in the car and while I like it I definately do not think it's one of his top albums.
  36. AlexR
    Oct 7, 2006
    9
    great album, the songs flow by well, the lyrics are great, what the hell else do you want?
  37. RobertJ
    Oct 6, 2006
    8
    If Napoleon Dynamite made an album, this would be it. Cool in a very dorky way. Funky in a very forced, self-conscious way. It sounds like a Beck album, but different than any other Beck album. The songs are good, without ever quite reaching greatness. I'm not quite sure Beck's music will lend itself well to a maturing artist, and perhaps some immaturity and naivity are needed If Napoleon Dynamite made an album, this would be it. Cool in a very dorky way. Funky in a very forced, self-conscious way. It sounds like a Beck album, but different than any other Beck album. The songs are good, without ever quite reaching greatness. I'm not quite sure Beck's music will lend itself well to a maturing artist, and perhaps some immaturity and naivity are needed to pull off "loser" and "where it's at", but regardless, I think it's a strong album. Expand
  38. BipS
    Oct 6, 2006
    10
    Beck's masterful blend of genres has never been better. From the touching and haunting echoes of "New Round" to the unashamed brazenness of of "1000 bpm" the album plays more like a full spectrum than anything else. Each song is entirely different and yet fully connected to the album. Beck goes from singing in a melodic near-whisper to full out rapping and belting out his traditional Beck's masterful blend of genres has never been better. From the touching and haunting echoes of "New Round" to the unashamed brazenness of of "1000 bpm" the album plays more like a full spectrum than anything else. Each song is entirely different and yet fully connected to the album. Beck goes from singing in a melodic near-whisper to full out rapping and belting out his traditional catchy and almost nonsensical choruses. For years, Beck has embodied a wholly new sound with each album he releases. In The Information, he seems to come from a new direction in each new track. There's a different reason to listen over and over again to each song. Whether it's the found recordings of conversations to the incorporation of telephone sounds and messages, each song has something new to it. Songs like "Cell Phones Dead" and "Nausea" have genuine mass commercial appeal and could be hits on the radio, while others like "Elevator Music" and "No Complaints" are just as good with a more authentic feel. This album is the best of anything Beck has ever done and it captures the sounds of his whole career without being a trendy "Best Of" album. This is all entirely new, but happily familiar. It's a must-have for any fans of Beck, and all music fans should at least give it a listen. Expand
  39. DavisW
    Oct 6, 2006
    9
    nothing short of awesomeness.
  40. MarkN
    Oct 6, 2006
    9
    A surprisingly great album for such a quick release after Guero. The music videos that were made in the studio for each song makes it even better. Great job Beck!
  41. jeffc
    Oct 6, 2006
    9
    Do not review ANY album until after 5 listens........ Pnik Floyd meets the artist- formerl-y known as Justin Timberlake. Beck...once again is doing what noone else does...
  42. mikes.
    Oct 5, 2006
    5
    Beck has gotten into a comfortable groove as of late and I believe AMG overrated this album. Yes Nigel Godrich is a great producer and does a good job in giving Beck focus. In theory, this album should be good enough to be considered one of his best. It will satisfy hardcore Beck fans. But Beck's original albums had an inviting vibe that helped him break into mainstream pop culture, Beck has gotten into a comfortable groove as of late and I believe AMG overrated this album. Yes Nigel Godrich is a great producer and does a good job in giving Beck focus. In theory, this album should be good enough to be considered one of his best. It will satisfy hardcore Beck fans. But Beck's original albums had an inviting vibe that helped him break into mainstream pop culture, this new release lacks that energy. This is largely due to the fact that Beck hasn't modernized his production. If Beck grabbed Scott Storch, Timbaland, Max Martin: he could of made something special and refreshing. Don't get me wrong Godrich does a good job, lots of depth and consistency in production and in Beck's songwriting. However, he seems to be retracing his earlier artistic career and trying to recreate what he did with his earlier albums. If this album came out 10 years ago it would be a masterpiece. Now he sounds comfortable, not lazy, but also not quite inspiring. What disappoints me the most is that he continues to remain in the same genre of funk,rap,pop,folk, indie and throws them all into a melting pot. For an artist that has previously displayed creativity and variety with Sea Changes, Odelay, and his earlier more experimental work, it seems Beck is now repeating himself, musically and with the retro production by Godrich as well. Overall the album is average, and not that fun or entertaining. Expand
  43. LJ
    Oct 5, 2006
    9
    Pay no attention to the negative comments from some of the more cynical critics. This is a terrific album. One of the best things to come out this year. Almost every track is a winner and it's beautifully put together.
  44. Charlie
    Oct 5, 2006
    8
    This ain't no party, this ain't no Guero: Far better and more interesting than I was prepared for and much darker than I expected from what was originally hyped as a "hip-hop album".
  45. gregor
    Oct 5, 2006
    10
    fantastic.
  46. Scott
    Oct 4, 2006
    8
    Another excellent album from the master of genre-bending. It's a little over-long but it's still thoroughly enjoyable.
  47. ChrisM
    Oct 4, 2006
    9
    Awesome CD, perfectly captures the mood of 2006, and it has a great flow to it. Godrich's production is unreal, i dont think any radiohead fan ever thought he could produce something this dark and funky and actually make it sound good.
  48. BaileyR
    Oct 4, 2006
    10
    "The Information" is "Dark Side of the Moon" brilliant.
  49. WilliamM
    Oct 4, 2006
    10
    I don't think I will ever give beck a bad rap. I have probably listened to his music than most everything else combined.
  50. BenC
    Oct 4, 2006
    9
    A solid mix of Guero and Odelay with great basslines and interesting lyrics. A-
  51. ToddW
    Oct 4, 2006
    5
    Beck is the living embodiment of the saying, "You can fool some of the people all of the time." This was a hold-my-nose, blindly hit any number key ranking. I'm really trying to understand and appreciate this guy, I really am. However, after getting my hopes wildly up following Odelay, everything that's followed has been sort of, well, ugh. Even enlisting uber producer Nigel Beck is the living embodiment of the saying, "You can fool some of the people all of the time." This was a hold-my-nose, blindly hit any number key ranking. I'm really trying to understand and appreciate this guy, I really am. However, after getting my hopes wildly up following Odelay, everything that's followed has been sort of, well, ugh. Even enlisting uber producer Nigel Godrich on his recent works has helped little to make his sound palatable. This guy may either be too talented for his own good, or he is a one-note wonder who sucks and is taking all of us along for a ride with his latest rehashing of the same three chords. Next... Expand
  52. StevenG
    Oct 4, 2006
    10
    He's done it again! This album is utterly amazing. Beck has fiercely combined the hushed sounds he created with Nigel Godrich on Mutations and Sea Change, while also recalling his collaborations with the Dust Brothers, ultimately making for a mesmerizing listening experience.
  53. mc
    Oct 4, 2006
    9
    back in fine form. entertainment weekly is correct...it is sonically incredible thanks to nigel's signature production chops. dark star is a real standout for me
  54. Systool
    Oct 3, 2006
    8
    One of the best Beck's material in years. Some songs like "Cellphone's Dead", "Strange Apparition" or the introductive "Elevator Music" can be considered like some of his most brilliant songs. The whole is very eclectic, somewhere between the folk of Stereopathetic Soul Manure, the hip hop of Odelay and Kid A-like electronic sounds. Nigel Godrich production is very rich and One of the best Beck's material in years. Some songs like "Cellphone's Dead", "Strange Apparition" or the introductive "Elevator Music" can be considered like some of his most brilliant songs. The whole is very eclectic, somewhere between the folk of Stereopathetic Soul Manure, the hip hop of Odelay and Kid A-like electronic sounds. Nigel Godrich production is very rich and seems at the same time really spontaneous. Sadly, some tracks can feel a bit boring, especially in the second part of the album. This album remains for me a peak for 2006. Expand
  55. Loco
    Oct 3, 2006
    10
    If you thought Guero was good then hold on 'cause this could be the best Beck album to date. A mix of good old Beck with very creative production reminiscent of the beatles psychedelic era. Screams, emotional soundscapes, a place where the quirk and the deep live in harmony. The best of the year so far.
  56. MattA
    Oct 3, 2006
    8
    I have enjoyed this CD a lot in the last few hours. I've listened to it twice and many songs have a really good beat to them. I love how becks always changing and pushing boundries.
  57. ThomasG
    Oct 3, 2006
    10
    Love it almost as much as guero! Awesome effort beck!
  58. [Anonymous]
    Oct 3, 2006
    7
    Beck is very creative, and doesn't seem to run short of ideas very quickly - well, the dorky Guero album was an exception last year. I didn't really expect much, especially with this album coming so soon after Guero, but the Information was surprisingly good. The songs pop songs with sound collages to make them unique and interesting - some work out and others are too Beck is very creative, and doesn't seem to run short of ideas very quickly - well, the dorky Guero album was an exception last year. I didn't really expect much, especially with this album coming so soon after Guero, but the Information was surprisingly good. The songs pop songs with sound collages to make them unique and interesting - some work out and others are too meandering, boring, and just fall flat. In general, the quality of this album is top notch, and some of the songs are better than anything Beck has made since Odelay (or maybe Mutations). The album does suffer from a little too much material, and runs a little long. I agree with one of the reviewers who said that Beck needs a better editor, for quality control. Grade: 7.4/10.0 Expand
  59. MattD.
    Oct 3, 2006
    7
    Disorganized. A little too much funk, though he can make it quite cool at times. Plenty of good Beck moments, but they are interspersed in this long album.
  60. MichaelC
    Oct 3, 2006
    10
    Brilliant.
  61. julien
    Oct 3, 2006
    10
    it's all right beck...
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 36 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 36
  2. Negative: 0 out of 36
  1. This is their third collaboration, but neither the casual, light-bodied "Mutations" nor the intimate "Sea Change" anticipated this kind of flowering. [24 Sep 2006]
  2. If Beck gets better as he gets madder, this is definitely his best since 'Midnite Vultures' - maybe even since 'Odelay'.
  3. Without the bizarre lyrical invention and fuck-shit-up whimsy of his earlier work, Beck's attempts at party jams come off woefully overwrought and flat, making the darker bits interspersed throughout seem intriguing by default.