Generally favorable reviews - based on 8 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 8
  2. Negative: 0 out of 8
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  1. Jun 12, 2020
    The restraint and love that the band show and the overall peacefulness of the music make for a lovely, warm summer day kind of album, perfect for daydreaming and pondering the timeless genius of Daniel Johnston.
  2. 80
    Built to Spill Plays the Songs of Daniel Johnston manages to do what most tribute albums aspire to, but few achieve — it stands as a testament to the songs and to the band reimagining them. Martsch spotlights Johnston’s lyrics and arrangements in a fresh, innovative way that makes us reconsider these songs while reminding us why we fell in love with them in the first place.
  3. Jun 16, 2020
    It’s a lovingly crafted tribute to a kindred musical spirit.
  4. Jun 9, 2020
    This lovingly covered collection will not make new fans of either act, but as a loving document to a unique songwriter, it succeeds.
  5. Uncut
    Jun 4, 2020
    The results are terrific; which is odd. in a way, given the stark simplicity of Johnston's songwriting and BTS's reputation for angular and faceted. [May 2020, p.25]
  6. Rolling Stone
    Jun 4, 2020
    BTS's gentle guitar jams home in on the tender core of the Texas songwriter's starnge genius. [Jun 2020, p.71]
  7. Jun 15, 2020
    Martsch misses the opportunity to commune with Johnston’s music, or to do anything with it, really. On the 11 songs here, he resists the urge to plug in his distortion pedals and sail away.
  8. Jun 4, 2020
    On Built to Spill Play the Songs of Daniel Johnston, Built to Spill sadly suck most of the vitality and marrow from Johnston's occasionally vexing compositions.

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