Beck's sensibility is composed of shards and polarities: notwithstanding his definite left-wing leanings, he has never possessed the single-mindedness to pen a protest song. ''I remember trying to write that kind of song, but there were so many different factors and ambivalences,'' he says. ''There are so many good things in the bad things and bad things in the good. The songs are fragmented, because you look at things from different angles to get 360 degrees. Maybe the message is more complicated and skewed.''Noted without other comment. But: there are repeated references to Beck rapping on 'Loser' and other songs. I've got all his albums except for the last one, and his words have never seemed like rap to me. Opinions in comments please, no punchlines needed.
Second, there's the anti-Beck:
Axl abandoned the reformation of G'N'Fn'R because he was not allowed to wear fur. Transcendent rock n' roll arrogance or just petulant crap? Again, votes appreciated.
At MTV's annual awards show in 2002, publicists buzzed through the audience whispering about a big finale. And with just minutes to go in the broadcast, a screen lifted away to reveal the band and Rose, in cornrows and a sports jersey, looking strikingly young. The musicians burst into Welcome to the Jungle, one of the original band's biggest hits, and the crowd went wild. But on television Rose quickly seemed out of breath and out of tune. He ended the performance, which included the new song Madagascar and the original band's hit Paradise City, in a messianic stance, raising his arms and closing his eyes. He left the audience with a cryptic but tantalizing message: "Round one."
Round two never came. The band went on a successful tour, but in the hours after their triumphant Madison Square Garden appearance, Rose was reportedly refused entry to the Manhattan nightclub Spa because he was wearing fur, which the club does not allow. That killed the mood. He didn't show up for the band's next performance, and the promoter canceled the rest of the tour.