Music Review – Mac DeMarco
Sebastian Suarez ’18
In a world of pretentious and uninspired indie rock, refreshing Canadian musician Mac DeMarco lends his musical abilities to listeners everywhere. Rock and Roll Nightclub, Mr. DeMarco’s first “mini-LP,” introduced him into the Canadian underground after its release date on March 13, 2012. His flowing riffs and heavy vocals laid the tracks for a kind of relaxed sound, and he caught the attention of a plethora of now loyal fans who adore his music.
His first full length album, 2, was released on October 16 of 2012, and was the impetus that truly thrusted Mac and his fellow band members into the Canadian indie limelight.
This momentum continued on for another year, and eventually resulted in Mac DeMarco’s third effort, Salad Days, released in December of 2014. In between a rigorous touring schedule and a bombardment of offers from a multitude of record companies, Salad Days was another triumph for DeMarco and his bandmates. The album, packed full of more hit songs, employs a multitude of different sounds, including a couple songs with copious amounts of energizing synthesizer riffs. This installment of DeMarco’s musical prowess earned him a nomination for Polaris’ best album of the year, Canada’s premier music prize. This pitted him against artists like Drake, who was nominated for his effort Nothing Was the Same. After a long spell of touring, Mac decided to retire himself briefly to his home on the waterfront in New York to craft his most recent mini-LP, Another One. In typical DeMarco fashion, he tells the listener his actual address at the end of the final song on the record. After further research on the seemingly unbelievable anecdote, one can find in a multitude of interviews that Mac indeed does say his real address and invites any loyal fan who must have listened to the album all the way through to stop by for a cup of coffee.
Mac DeMarco is more than just a man behind a microphone, however. After watching endless interviews and live performances of him scattered across the internet, I recognized his humility. Mac DeMarco does not possess an over-inflated self-image, but rather the ideals of a man who does what he loves. His words through countless interviews echoed the resolution of a man who makes music for the love of the craft, not to meet a deadline with a record company. He appreciates the loyal fanbase that has built itself around him, and oftentimes he thanks them for enjoying his “weirdness.”
After patient waiting to see the lineup of the summer music festival Free Press Summer Festival here in Houston, Texas, I was overjoyed at the sight of the artists. Mac DeMarco, toothless grin and all, was plastered on one of the posters for the summer’s upcoming concert extravaganza. Marking down the days on the calendar until the festival, I finally arrived at the Saturn Stage in the NRG parking lot on June 5 of this year at about four o’clock in the scorching sun.
What awaited me completely exceeded my expectations. The songs themselves, however, were not the most evocative part of the performance. After seeing countless artists perform the day before, and many more to come afterward, I have one vivid memory of Mr. DeMarco. He said thank you. He did not thank us for coming to watch him perform in the superficial way that most of the musicians did the day prior, however. Instead, he said, as I remember, “Thank you all for coming out to see us today. I know we’re weird, and we do some weird stuff here on stage [the music], but we really do appreciate you all for coming out to see us and being a part of this together. God bless.”
Mac DeMarco is not someone who “does it for the money,” but rather expresses his ideals and emotions through his discography for its own sake. He is an exemplary proponent of what the musical industry needs today, and hopefully will release more great work in the years to come.