Willis Earl Beal
Nobody knows. - XL
FILTER Grade: 77%
By Alejandro Rubio on September 12, 2013
“Has Beal lost his damn mind?” If you’re not asking yourself that question by the end of the record, then you obviously weren’t paying attention. There’s a lot of psychotic tension within Willis Earl Beal’s second full length Nobody knows. Half of the record is made up of songs like “Too Dry To Cry,” which have the tone of a street-corner gospel projected through a Raindogs speaker, while the other songs such as “Ain’t Got No Love” sound like a schizophrenic Cerberus that can somehow harmonize each of its demonic dog head’s respectable split-personalities into a fiendish chorus (that’s a good thing). But what unifies the record is Beal’s ability to create concrete images within his abstract menagerie of sounds, which he then animates through his oddly charming and less paternal Screamin’ Jay Hawkins persona (also a good thing). Nobody knows. might drive you crazy, but maybe it’s time you took a little vacay from your sanity.