16th & Valencia Roxy Music
Label: Warner Records
What Will We Be marks the first major label release for one of indie's most beloved kooks. It shouldn't come as much of a surprise; Banhart's steadily forged his way onto major festival bills and into major Hollywood scenes (he dated Natalie Portman). It also shouldn't come as much of a concern. Though his tendency to sprawl is more in control, he's much the same carefree gypsy. He goes from piano lounge to renaissance fair to cabaret to campfire sing-along -- and that's just one song ("Chin Chin & Muck Muck"). He also dabbles in disco, folk, retro R&B, and the Doors. Fun times.