Ape in Pink Marble

Devendra Banhart - Ape in Pink Marble
Critic Score
Based on 12 reviews
2016 Ratings: #537 / 762
User Score
Based on 50 ratings
2016 Ratings: #347
September 23, 2016 / Release Date
LP / Format
Nonesuch / Label
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Under The Radar
There's an oneness with Banhart and his music on this album, an effortless grace signaling arrival in a stage of less conflict and fewer flights of fancy. And there's a low-hanging hammock vibe throughout that it doesn't stand up from, which is alright because that's just where you want it to stay.
Things may have mellowed — his hair is cropped, his shirts buttoned in full, his music perhaps more universally approachable — but Banhart has not lost his touch.
The album's overall effect is one of strolling along a seaside path, maybe with a stray dog and a straw hat, in a less-frequented village somewhere far from home, and it's one of Banhart's most satisfying.

Maybe it’s because he’s tired of constantly reinventing himself, but more likely it’s that the enigmatic Banhart is currently making the kind of music he actually enjoys making.

The Line of Best Fit

Smartly, instead of trying to shout over the din of a packed room, he dials things back, and Ape in Pink Marble feels inviting and intimate, if a bit somber.

Drowned in Sound

Ape In Pink Marble may not quite measure up in quality to Mala, but it is definitely a fruitful album by one of the most respected musicians in the business.

Tiny Mix Tapes
Banhart imbues the music with a surprising amount of character and feeling, lending it the aura of a disembodied spirit lingering on, both shapeless and somehow affecting.

Ape shares Mala’s wispy, low-stakes coziness. Despite the chilled-out atmosphere, however, Ape is a much darker listen, and its best moments are a reminder of why Banhart touched a nerve in the first place.

Loud and Quiet
The 35-year-old musician has continued to refine his style and songwriting, without making a radical change to his art and music. Therefore it’s unsurprising that this, his ninth album, starts directly from where its predecessor ‘Mala’ (2013) left off.
On 'Ape in Pink Marble' Banhart scales everything back. The result is a mixed one. The first couple of songs breezes by effortless, and it should come as no surprise that banhart's soothing voice works nice on the more mellow songs, in my opinion he's always been at his best when he dials things back. And this could have worked great, but it wouldn't be a Banhart album without a couple of novelty songs, and sadly on 'Ape in Pink Marble' they don't work very well.

The album however do at time ... read more
Devendra Banhart's funny and at times peculiar songwriting shines behind the groovy and energetic production that Devendra Banhart has adopted for this record. Towards the end of the record, however, the atmosphere becomes somewhat darker. It does not work out that well, with the rest of the record being so coolheaded and relaxing.

In conclusion, a nice well crafted record that does not really show anything beyond Devendra Banhart just having fun with his sound.
Great record.
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Track List

  1. Middle Names
  2. Good Time Charlie
  3. Jon Lends a Hand
  4. Mara
  5. Fancy Man
  6. Fig in Leather
  7. Theme for a Taiwanese Woman in Lime Green
  8. Souvenirs
  9. Mourner's Dance
  10. Saturday Night
  11. Linda
  12. Lucky
  13. Celebration
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Added on: June 24, 2016