Live Review: Daniel Johnston 8-12-09

Daniel Johnston

“They went and called the movie ‘The Devil and Daniel Johnston.’  Now how am I ever going to be free?!”

Such were the thoughts of an artists whose demons are almost more famous than he is.  It’s not too wild to bet that Daniel Johnston’s image will never truly be liberated from the conflicted, eccentric man portrayed in the aforementioned award-winning documentary about his life.  Surely, many of the audience members at his Wednesday night concert were drawn there in anticipation of the “grand spectacle” of Daniel Johnston rather than the sole attraction to his music.

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Pitchfork: Reflections From Hipster Mecca

Flaming Lips

“How about a cheer for all those bad girls/And all the boys that play that rock and roll/They love it like you love Jesus/It does the same thing to their souls” — Tom Petty

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Music festivals can be compared to something of a religious exchange.  Really.  Just think about it.  How much of yourself are you willing to sacrifice to your music gods in return for a blissful, out-of-this-world live spectacle?  Would you fry yourself under the unforgiving midsummer sun for hours on end?  Would you brave the untold terrors of the port-a-pottys (yikes), or the critical gazes of ever-so-ironic hipster brigade?

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