An example of how fast things move nowadays: Chicago singer Willis Earl Beal uploaded a version of Lana Del Rey's "Black Beauty" to his Soundcloud, which he is calling "A response to Lana Del Rey from Willis Earl Beal." The original Del Rey track of unknown origin leaked just a few weeks ago, but Beal nonetheless found time to re-do the track, which sees Del Rey singing about a troubled man unable to see the beauty and happiness in life. In his version, Beal assumes that role, echoing much of the lyrics of the original. But his version instead imbues the track with a bit of warmth and quiet strength, thanks mostly to a fantastic vocal turn.
Beal will release his new album Nobody knows. on Sept. 10 via XL, which sports a collaboration with Cat Power. Del Rey, meanwhile, is likely plotting her second album — she played at Lollaplaooza this past weekend, where she was one of the most popular acts.