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  1. cultural capital
    Beck Unhyped and Unplugged on LES The funny thing about Beck is that as his career grows, he becomes less and less of a star. He started out as the slacker’s poster child with Loser, balanced populism with avant-garde sonics on Odelay, and now he turns out an interesting but semi-popular album every year. He was just one musician among six at his intimate acoustic set last night at the tiny Angel Orensanz Foundation for the Arts, the former synagogue on the Lower East Side, his long hair hanging over his face and a fedora shielding his eyes. The low-key and unhyped concert was billed as “Beck & Friends,” and the friends on the bill weren’t big-name pals but rather the guys he tours with: guitarist Matt Mahaffey, bassist Justin Meldal-Johnsen, drummer Matt Sherrod, keyboardist Brian Lebarton, and dancer Ryan Falkner. There weren’t even any celebs in the crowd.