Drenched In Blog: Tranny Time with Devendra Banhart

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If you guys are anything like me, you enjoy dudes dressing up as bearded-lady she-males from an eastern European circus sideshow. If you don’t, stop reading. Prude.

Devendra Banhart, the Houston-born neo-folk singer, has a new album coming out next week. Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon is a really cool collection of the indie folk Banhart’s fans have grown to enjoy spacing out to while slouching in art lofts all over American Apparel nation. The entire album is streaming on Banhart’s MySpace page. A lot of it is very reminiscent of Lee Hazlewood’s early recordings, with a lot of Dylan’s “funny voice” period. Check out the rockabilly echo effects on the vocals, too.

But I can’t ignore the publicity pictures that have been released for the album. I hope the whole “skinny dudes dressing up as she-male female impersonators” thing goes mainstream. What I would give to see Ryan Seacrest interview some dead-eyed celebutard while tarted up as a Moulin Rouge tranny. Or going out to Sherlock’s in the Village one night and seeing Joe Frat House decked out like Divine. Come on, America. We can make this work.

Here’s a video from a French rock show, of Banhart covering a Lauryn Hill song. It just goes to show you, when the French want to make a subculture even more fucked-up-looking, by God, they just do it. -- Craig Hlavaty

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