Friday, June 26, 2020

Built to Spill - Plays the Songs of Daniel Johnston LP - Clear w/ Yellow & Blue Splatter (/500)


Ernest Jennings (2020)

I love Built to Spill and have for twenty five years or so.  Sure, I tend to favor their records from the 90s, but I've never heard a Built to Spill record that I haven't liked.  They are all just varying degrees of excellent and I tend to rank There's Nothing Wrong With Love and Keep It Like a Secret as the most excellent of the bunch.

However, when we get to their latest, an album of Daniel Johnston cover songs, it's difficult for me to get very excited.  To be blunt, while there's absolutely nothing bad about the album, it's kind of boring.  I'm not sure if that's because of Daniel Johnston's songs or if the execution is simply not very inspiring.  No matter the cause, you just kind of cruise through this light and airy record which has a habit of fading into background noise when you're listening to it.

I am admittedly not particularly familiar with Daniel Johnston's output, so I'm not going to compare these BTS covers to his originals.  All I can do is judge the album in front of me on its own merits and I just keep coming back to the fact that it isn't very exciting.  They just come across as paint by numbers jangle pop songs.  And while I like them, I can't fathom a time where I would look at my Built to Spill records and decide that this is the one I'm going to listen to when all of the others are significantly more interesting.

Built to Spill - Plays the Songs of Daniel Johnston:

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