Devendra Banhart | Rejoicing In The Hands

Just Add Noise

Rating: 9.5

Completely original, completely honest, completely accessible. Devendra Banhart's second album rejoices in itself and leaves you with no other option than to do the same.

Young God Records' Michael Gira knew instantly that he had found a gem when he heard the rough homemade recordings of wandering hippy folk artist Devendra Banhart. These recordings would become the first Banhart release on the label. On this second record, all the spirit remains, however the recording quality is greatly improved but retains the charm provided by vintage instruments and recording devices. Recorded in an old southern-style Georgia house with tall ceilings and wood floors - only Banhart on a stool with a guitar and a handful of mics around him. The result is what you hear with only a few overdubs and collaborations including Vashti Bunyan, one of Banhart's idols, on the title track.

Banhart's warbling voice is at the same time familiar and original, honest and nonsensical, soothing and entertaining. Pianos, organs, cellos, violins, drums and upright bass all struggle to hold their own ground in the company of his words. But how can you compete with such brilliance as "Now because my teeth don't bite, I can take them out dancing. Yeah, I can take my little teeth out and show them a real good time." as heard on This Beard is for Siobán, not the most moving line, but my personal favorite.