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Articles Home » 1980 Articles » Beck, Jeff - 1980 There And Back
Beck, Jeff - 1980 There And Back

ARTIST: Beck, Jeff
ALBUM: There And Back
SERIAL: FE 35684
YEAR: 1980
CD REISSUE: 1990, Epic, EK 35684


LINEUP: Jeff Beck - guitar * Mo Foster - bass * Simon Phillips - drums * Jan Hammer - keyboards, drums * Tony Hymas - keyboards

TRACK LISTING: 01 Star Cycle * 02 Too Much To Lose * 03 You Never Know * 04 The Pump * 05 El Becko * 06 The Golden Road * 07 Space Boogie * 08 The Final Peace


Unbelievably this is to the best of my knowledge the first time a Jeff Beck album has featured here at Glory Daze. For a musician as legendary as Beck it's almost impossible to know where to begin, considering his exploits with The Yardbirds, The Jeff Beck Group, Beck, Bogert and Appice and his solo career. Where does one start with that catalogue? Beck's career has seen him take on every style of guitar playing imaginable, but it was when he started heading down the fusion road in the mid 70's that he attained some of his biggest success. 1975's 'Blow By Blow' is one of the greatest albums of that genre and 1976's 'Wired' was almost as impressive. There was a great atmosphere surrounding both albums, but it wasn't until 1980 that Beck returned to complete his fusion trilogy in equally satisfying style. Jan Hammer returned to play on three tracks, having featured on 'Wired' also, while the rest of the album featured Tony Hymas compositions, with Beck's name only appearing on 'The Final Peace'.

The Songs
Like the previous two albums this is an all instrumental affair, although this was more technologically aware given the rapid rise of keyboard effects in music at the time. The first three tracks are all written by Hammer, with his distinctive synth work opening 'Star Cycle' before Beck chimes in with his unique guitar tone and Phillips always excellent drumming. This has a vibe that Jimmy Page seemed to borrow for his work on the 'Death Wish II' soundtrack in 1981. 'Too Much To Lose' is more restrained, relying more on Beck than the keyboards, with a disco tinge to the bass work. Sounding more akin to the mid 70's work is 'You Never Know', almost as if lifted from 'Blow By Blow'. This has that unique New York City type mood to it, very grimy and desperate, but always engaging. The Hymas tracks follow and are immediately less bombastic, focusing on Beck's myriad guitar solos instead. 'The Pump' became quite well known and rightfully so, thanks to some stunning work from Beck. More hard rock based is 'El Becko' where the interplay is exemplary all round. More somber is 'The Golden Road' which sounds like the incidental music to shows like 'Hill Street Blues' and 'Magnum P.I' during the more excitable moments. 'Space Boogie' is exactly that, an amplified rocker that sounds similar to the Gary Moore Colosseum II albums, especially with the frenetic drumming and manic guitar work. Following that explosion 'The Final Peace' lives up to its title also, based entirely on emotional guitar work and some background synths. This was Beck's last album until 1985 surprisingly.

In Summary
When he did return it was on the high-AOR inspired 'Flash', which was miles removed from 'There And Back' and appeared to alienate his fan base. Then again who wasn't pursuing melodic rock in the 80's? It was actually quite good, but I'd have to choose the fusion era over anything Beck has done since. As a famed axe man he managed to fit into every era with ease and his hard rock albums from the late 60's shouldn't be overlooked. But for a guitar clinic 'There And Back' is as good a place to start as any, with the great man at the peak of his prowess. Fusion had never been more satisfying and Beck left his mark on the genre emphatically.

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#1 | Eric on April 17 2013 23:05:15
Good review but I gotta say, I never really got into Beck's albums. I owned 'Wired' and 'Blow by Blow' but hardly played either. Coolest Beck footage: The Yardbirds in the 1966 classic film 'Blow-Up' with Jeff struggling with troubled amp.
#2 | Eric on April 17 2013 23:05:28
YouTube Video:
#3 | rkbluez on April 20 2013 00:39:31
In the group of albums that came in succession I'd rate this one #3.

1.Blow By Blow...masterpiece!
2. Wire...real good some classic suff.
3. There And Back...good instrumental stuff butt not his best.
#4 | reyno-roxx on April 20 2013 13:03:48
I like this record, but feel that 'Blow By Blow' tops the list too..especially 'Freeway Jam' that Angel used to borrow from in Meadows and Giuffria's live jamming.

I also rate Beck's 'Guitar Shop' album with Terry Bozzio, and the first Jeff Beck Group album where Rod Stewart does his best Sam Cooke impersonations to the point where he sounds like Steve Perry years before Journey existed.
#5 | rkbluez on April 20 2013 20:41:29
I like

1. Beck Bogert and Appice
2. Rough and Ready...the song Situation kills
3. Blow By Blow
4. Truth

Really like the Guitar Shop album also Dave but I'm more a fan of the older Beck
#6 | tompa on August 31 2015 00:09:01
All the other albums by Jeff Beck have MOSTLY good songs on them but this one, first I heard from him, is downright perfection. Not one song on there to skip.
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