Willis Earl Beal’s debut 2012 release Acousmatic Sorcery intertwined lo-fi folk and howling gut-bucket blues and while follow-up Nobody knows. increased the fidelity, Beal’s threadbare emotions remained. He wept in “Everything unwinds.”, yearned to see the other side of pearly gates during “Too Dry to Cry”, and remained obstinate for the blind dedication of “Coming Through”. Aside from the greater emphasis on production, the only constant was Beal’s enduring voice’ winding through deltas and climbing up mountaintops.
“Babble on.”, one of two new songs Beal suddenly released yesterday travels further back in time than any previous release; its delicate guitar figure recalling a wandering English ballad. The dusty hat of a troubadour is one Beal wears well, calmly urging the cool waters to “babble on” and seeking refuge in places where “no one waits” and there “are no gates”. In this earnestness, Beal channels the often challenged verse of Guthrie’s “This Land Is Your Land”, imaging a world where the only barriers are mental and not man-made. Even in a subdued state, Beal’s voice is sounding. Like the river Beal traces nothing can stop him, not a single one of his guises will ever turn back.
The other track Beal debuted yesterday “Coriander Tree Life” is a slice of floating synth-work and features multitracked vocals. You can find it here.