Beck – “Cities,” “Spiral Staircase” and “Touch the People”

Sound ShapesBeck recently announced that his next album, Song Reader, will be released as sheet music, and while it’s completely unconventional, it seems a perfectly natural Beck move.

From the very beginning, he’s always sought to turn the music world on its head — from the music itself to the way it’s released. He released a string of free cover albums as Record Club with help from his musical friends, and the cover art for his 2005 album, The Information, was a blank canvas that came with stickers to create your own artwork. Now, in addition to Song Reader, he’s exploring another new medium: video games.

Beck, along with deadmau5, I Am Robot and Proud, and Jim Guthrie (formerly of Islands, Human Highway and Royal City), was commissioned to score the new Playstation 3 game Sound Shapes.

What’s especially cool about the new songs is how they interact with the game play. “Cities” and “Spiral Staircase” pick up where 2008’s Modern Guilt left off, but with a slightly heavier electronic lean. The lean turns into a full-blown jump on “Touch the People,” where warbly synths, frantic drum machines and vocal effects take over. We’re betting that, at least musically, Song Reader will be a bit more conventional.

Check out the gameplay videos below.

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