Preview – Devendra Banhart 28th June
Devendra Banhart, the barefoot freak folker skateboarding hippymeister from the Americas is coming to Brighton this June; do you think he’ll fit in ok?
Banhart brands his fare as ‘unpopular pop music’. I have to disagree with the oxymoron he presents. Perhaps he made that comment before he had entered the mainstream consciousness but popular he most certainly is. Even if you are not completely down with his mix of folk, synth-pop beats, Latin interludes and jangled guitars, his thinking person’s Russell Brand looks may grab you (um, or not), or perhaps his collaborations with Anthony & The Johnsons and Beck have crossed your path, or maybe you have come across his art in one of the many galleries it has been exhibited in.
Freak folk seems to be a ubiquitous description for anyone with a guitar and non-standard vocals nowadays. I think Banhart gives you a bit more than that with his nouveau beatnik lyrical stylings against a more recent backdrop of mainstream guitar melodies. His new album ‘Mala’ is released in March 2013 and I wait to see what direction he will be snaking in this time around. I’m not sure if he is a reluctant hippy or a reluctant pop star, perhaps both, perhaps he will reveal the truth at his show at the Old Market on 28th June.
WORDS by Tim Smillie