There are many many reasons for why I am currently obsessed with Devendra Banhart, but that’s more of a personal issue than one which permits me to rant about the greatness of his new album, Mala. However, I am going to do so anyway. According to my listening history, this week I have played Mala thirteen times. Its medicinal qualities are quite something.
Since 2009’s What Will We Be, Banhart has fallen in love with, proposed to, and moved in with the cool-as-hell Ana Kraš. The joining of these two artistic forces has inevitably had a magical effect on his being, and his musical intentions. With regard to pop music and love, Mala takes us on a journey of nostalgia and retrospection. The ups and downs, the ambiguities, and pretty, little, worlds that Banhart is evolving in Mala, form a much-needed disclosure that he will always be there to take care. Kraš is one lucky chica.
Mala is available since last week via Nonesuch. You can listen to “Fur Hildegard Von Bingen,” “Never Seen Such Good Things” and “Mi Negrita” below, and then head to NPR Music to stream to the rest of the album.