Devendra Banhart and his frequent producer Noah Georgeson have announced their new collaborative ambient album Refuge, which the duo wrote and recorded separately during the pandemic in 2020.
“We’re hoping to create a sense of comfort and coming back to the moment,” Banhart said in a statement. “It’s really important to have a little bit of space between us and our anxieties and impulses. What you do with that space is up to you.”
Ahead of the LP’s August 13th release via Dead Oceans, the pair have shared the first two tracks “In a Cistern” and “Into Clouds.” An additional two tracks — “Mizuko Kuyo” and “Rain of Flowers (feat. Lama Rod Owens)” — are available Wednesday at noon EST exclusively via the Calm meditation app.
The accompanying video for “In a Cistern” and “Into Clouds,” directed by Nicky Giraffe and Julianna Giraffe, is “a meditative look at the life’s journey of two snails, from conception to old age, as narrated by a choir of natural imagery and other bugs,” the filmmakers said in a statement.
After meeting over 20 years ago, Banhart and Georgeson first worked together when the latter co-produced Banhart’s 2005 album Cripple Crow, with Georgeson most recently producing Banhart’s 2019 LP Ma. After that album was released, the pair were inspired to make an album inspired by their upbringing during the 1980’s New Age subculture.
“It wasn’t cool for a long time,” Georgeson said in a statement. “I went to grad school for music composition. Coming from an academically rigorous world, I rejected this kind of music because it’s simple, gestural music. It took me a while to come to a place where I was OK with that. It was not our intention to mimic these records but that New Age world is part of the musical foundation.”
The album also features contributions from Mary Lattimore on harp, Nicole Lawrence on pedal steel, Tyler Cash on piano, Todd Dahlhoff on bass, Vetiver’s Jeremy Harris on synthesizer, and David Ralicke on brass and woodwind — all recorded remotely — as well as meditation pioneer Sharon Salzberg, Banhart’s Bhutanese teacher Neten Chokling Rinpoche and spiritual teacher Sri Mataji Shaktiananda.
Refuge is available to preorder in a variety of formats — including limited-edition bundles complete with smudge bowls, tea, and Banhart hand-drawn artwork — from the Secretly Store.
1. Book of Bringhi
2. A Cat
3. Rise From Your Wave
4. Peloponnese Lament
5. In a Cistern
6. Into Clouds
7. For Em
8. Three Gates
9. Horn in Deep Night
10. Sky Burial
11. Asura Cave
12. Aran in Repose
13. Lament Return (Physical Version Only)