16 Songs, 1 Hour 10 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jeff Beck’s five-night stand at Ronnie Scott’s in November 2007 was such an event that Brian May, Tony Iommi, Jon Bon Jovi and Jimmy Page ventured to the club to catch the action. It’s easy to see why such heavyweights would flock to see Beck. Performing This Week captures the guitarist in his element — in a small Soho club, backed by a pared-down trio who are every bit as fearless and able as their leader. In many ways, this live document is the flip side to Beck’s other concert album, 1977’s With the Jan Hammer Group Live, which showed him before a stadium crowd in full fusion mode. Here, Beck’s performance is lean and focused. There are no unmitigated jams, and despite the intense virtuosic display of “Led Boots,” “Big Block,” and the shattering “Scatterbrain,” the emphasis is on the emotional impact of Beck’s playing. His lyricism is felt on ballads like “Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers” and Charles Mingus’ “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat,” but nowhere more than “A Day In the Life.” Beck nails John Lennon’s poignant vocal and the song’s mounting anxiety. His performance is among the most definitive readings of the most challenging Beatles song.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jeff Beck’s five-night stand at Ronnie Scott’s in November 2007 was such an event that Brian May, Tony Iommi, Jon Bon Jovi and Jimmy Page ventured to the club to catch the action. It’s easy to see why such heavyweights would flock to see Beck. Performing This Week captures the guitarist in his element — in a small Soho club, backed by a pared-down trio who are every bit as fearless and able as their leader. In many ways, this live document is the flip side to Beck’s other concert album, 1977’s With the Jan Hammer Group Live, which showed him before a stadium crowd in full fusion mode. Here, Beck’s performance is lean and focused. There are no unmitigated jams, and despite the intense virtuosic display of “Led Boots,” “Big Block,” and the shattering “Scatterbrain,” the emphasis is on the emotional impact of Beck’s playing. His lyricism is felt on ballads like “Cause We’ve Ended As Lovers” and Charles Mingus’ “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat,” but nowhere more than “A Day In the Life.” Beck nails John Lennon’s poignant vocal and the song’s mounting anxiety. His performance is among the most definitive readings of the most challenging Beatles song.

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