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Willis Earl Beal

Acousmatic Sorcery

    After years of toiling in obscurity, Willis Earl Beal is releasing his debut album, ‘Acousmatic Sorcery’, through Hot Charity / XL Recordings.

    The album’s eleven songs are taken from a series of recordings Beal made while living in Albuquerque, New Mexico. After living in the Chicago area for his entire life, Beal felt compelled to be near the desert, an idea he had long romanticized. “The desolate atmosphere was always in my head,” Beal says.

    He arrived in Albuquerque without a plan, a place to live, or enough money to live off of. He lived on the streets while trying to land a job and began singing to help him cope while sleeping rough. He spent days drawing and printing up his flyers, distributing them all over his new city. Eventually Beal found work as the night porter at a motel.

    ‘Acousmatic Sorcery’s scattershot approach and rudimentary instrumentals, along with Beal’s backstory, had people pegging him as an ‘outsider’ artist alongside Daniel Johnston and Jandek. And, as a fan of both men, Beal likes that distinction. “I'm glad I’m an outsider artist,” he says. “I can do whatever I want to and people don't know what to expect.”

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