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