Singer/Songwriter Mac DeMarco is sort of the Seth Rogen of music. Weird/random comparison, I know. Before any hipster wants to punch me in the face for comparing him to a mega-blockbuster actor – hear me out. Both guys started from humble beginnings way out in Western Canada. Also, both guys showed artistic promise early into their formative years. And, most importantly, both are two famous(ish) people that give off the “easy to drink a beer and kick it with” vibe. That’s a big check mark for me and my favorite creative people, I NEED my musicians/actors to be semi down to Earth. I mean, is there anything worse than a celebrity who you just know is a terrible person in “real life”? I digress… Over the past five years or so, DeMarco has built one of the most burgeoning fan bases in music, thanks to his fun “slacker” personality and, more notably, his sweet-sounding tunes.
DeMarco grew up in the frozen tundra of Edmonton, Alberta – AKA the middle of nowhere. But instead of picking up a puck and skates, Mac took to music early. Not quite finding the music community he desired in hockey-crazed Edmonton, he bounced around Canada for a while, eventually settling down in beautiful Montreal where he began releasing music. As he put out EPs and songs here and there, his reputation expanded among the underground community. Eventually, he linked up with famed indie label Captured Tracks, beginning a fruitful relationship that spans to this day.
Mac’s third full-length album, This Old Dog, dropped earlier this month to overwhelmingly positive reviews. The album’s lyrical content takes a more personal turn in relation to his earlier outputs, but it exemplifies everything people have come to love about his musical style. DeMarco, like previous “Everything Doesn’t Suck” subject Kevin Parker, is a bit of a virtuoso. Everything you hear on a Mac DeMarco record is being played by the man himself, which is impressive to say the least.
Unlike Parker, however, DeMarco favors a more scaled-back style. The oft-labeled “slacker-rock” hero typically couples reverb-heavy guitar licks with spacey, semi-psychedelic electronic riffs. Sometimes, the songwriter employs just a simple acoustic guitar. The result is usually the same: fun songs with light subject matter teetering between folk, indie rock and jazz, thanks in part to the frequent use of back-beat drum patterns. Easy-going in nature, DeMarco’s tunes are best suited for an afternoon drive or winding down after a long day as opposed to something you’d want to throw on a party. But that’s cool! At just 27 years old, his music is mature beyond his age. But him as a person? I wouldn’t necessarily go that far…
DeMarco is a known prankster and this goofball personality only furthers the lure with his die-hard fan base. Unlike most musicians, DeMarco is very accessible and interactive with his fans. In fact, he’s so open to meeting fans that he once publicized his address on an album, encouraging listeners to stop by for a cup of coffee. I haven’t heard of that sort of availability since Mike Jones dropped his phone number back on “Back Then” like 15 years ago. All jokes aside, I’ve been in full Mac DeMarco-mode for the past like three weeks and its been great. I look forward to catching a live set in the near future and I highly suggest giving him a look if you’re in need of some new tune-age. DeMarco will be at a host of festivals this summer, including Governor’s Ball and Lollapalooza. Oh… And Seth and Mac – if you’re reading this, give me a call. Lets drink.
Check Out Mac DeMarco’s summer touring schedule at his website here
Suggested Tracks: “Salad Days” “Chamber of Reflection” “Blue Boy” “My Old Man” “Brother”
Photo Credits- Stereogum, Hypebeast