RATKING exist as New York’s next great band. Like the Beastie Boys and Yeah Yeah Yeahs – local bands that came together as punks before developing into any sound they want – RATKING manage to mix youthful hardcore energy with pure, NY beats and rhymes in a post-hip-hop crew that could only exist in 2012.
Wiki, RATKING’s 18-year old frontman, grew up in Manhattan, playing Germs covers in his school music room (he has their motto NOGOD tattooed across his chest) in a band called the Homo-Thugs.
At 13 he was spotted in the audience by Wu Tang’s GZA and invited to come up onstage and perform, as GZA proclaimed “Wu-Tang is for the babies”. A star was born.
RATKING’s debut EP wiki93 (produced entirely by Sporting Life) will be released 19 October via Hot Charity/XL Recordings/Remote Control.
Willis Earl Beal will release his debut album Acousmatic Sorceryon March 30 via Hot Charity / XL Recordings / Remote Control.
The album’s 11 songs are taken from a series of recordings Beal made while living in Albuquerque, New Mexico. After living in the Chicagoland area for his entire life, Beal felt compelled to be near the desert an idea he had long romanticisced.
He arrived in Albuquerque without a plan, a place to live, or enough money to live off. 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.
It was during the late-night shifts that the 27-year-old musician from the south side of Chicago found his voice and taught himself to make music. The recordings are a result of what one creative mind can do with a few found instruments and objects such as a cassette-based karaoke machine and a $20 microphone. Somehow Beal managed to create warm, visceral and moving music seemingly out of nothing, just a little bit of imagination – it’s practically magic done without any fancy gadgetry, hence the name Acousmatic Sorcery.
“Willis Earl Beal is headed for hugeness, of that there’s no doubt.” – FACT