K. McCarty, Dead Dog’s Eyeball – Songs Of Daniel Johnston

Jeff Feuerzeig

By Jeff Feuerzeig

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
Daniel Johnston’s silky-voiced ex covers 22 of his finest songs.

Countless people have told me they first discovered Daniel from this record. Kathy McCarty was in Austin's Glass Eye when a skinny waif of a man spotted a gig poster featuring an eyeball; it was love at first sight. As Kathy said in The Devil and Daniel Johnston, "Daniel handed me his cassette Hi. How Are You? and I went home and played it and it literally blew my mind." You should never confuse the art with the man. That entire summer, Kathy thought she was in love with the guy who created this music, becoming Daniel's "chaste girlfriend" until realizing something in him was not "naive and pure and innocent and beautiful." She and Daniel parted ways but his songs never left her. In a true labor of love, Kathy and her silky vibrato cover 22 of Daniel's finest songs in a mosaic of different styles that are finely distilled and rendered through her love filter. "I Had a Dream," "Walking the Cow," "Desperate Man Blues," "Like a Monkey in a Zoo" stand out in a record filled with diamonds.