Cripple Crow




Cripple Crow is San Francisco Art Institute graduate and indie cult hero Devendra Banhart's fourth studio album and first for XL Recordings. Since breaking onto the scene in 2002 with the lengthly-titled album Oh Me Oh My... something something something, Banhart has wowed both critics and fans with his unique artistic voice. Recorded at Bearsville Studios in Woodstock, NY, Cripple Crow finds Banhart continuing to grow as both a musician and a songwriter and evolving into a truly iconic figure. The passion and emotion of Banhart's voice gives it a haunting quality that seems to seep into the listener's very being. This is instantly apparent from the album's very first song, "Now That I Know". With a simple acoustic guitar and slight, almost transparent string accompaniment, the vocals float across a sea of musical notes like a lonesome traveler searching for any sign of land. "Santa Maria Da Feira" is one of four songs on the album written in Spanish, Banheart's native tongue until is teenage years, while "Heard Somebody Say" is one of the best protest songs I've heard in a long while. Quiet and understated, the song's genius lies in its simplicity. "I heard somebody say that the war ended today, but everybody knows it's going still / on other lands in other seas is where we believe / it's simple, we don't want to kill". Those are the complete lyrics, repeating twice and then ending with the last line repeated over and over with a children's choir aiding with backing vocals. Though primarily mellow and heavily acoustic, the 22-song album also takes a few slightly more aggressive turns. "Long Haired Child", for example, is an early '70s-inspired, psychedelic rocker that invokes images of lava lamps, long flowing dresses and lots of grass... man. As a whole, the album is a long and winding highway with absolutely no rules of the road. No direction, no speed limits, no seat belt required - Cripple Crow will take you to places you never knew existed, revealing new and exciting mysteries each time you take the drive.

Devendra Banhart
XL Recordings

Posted:
Cripple Crow