Mac DeMarco 'Salad Days' album review
Third time around, slacker rock's golden boy sounds more tired than chill
Wed Mar 26 2014
Time Out Ratings<strong>Rating: </strong>3/5
Photograph: Danny Cohen
Mac DeMarco is the slackest rocker around, but that hasn’t stopped him from making some of the smoothest, catchiest indie ballads of the past decade. His 2012 album 2 was a near perfect record about boredom, lazy love and smoking cigarettes, delivered with all the careless insouciance of a teenager who thinks he’s seen it all. Mac toured that LP relentlessly, worked and partied himself into the ground. "I’m getting older, chip up on my shoulder," he says on the title track of album number three. It’s starting to show.
He still sounds like he’s fronting a drunk cruise ship band playing their last set of the night, but the easy, relaxed ennui of his last two records is gone, replaced with a weary drawl and some depressing road stories.
The first three tracks are corkers filled with brittle clean guitars, laid-back drumming and lazy crooning, but it flounders for a while after that. Things pick up with the ELO-ish synth party of "Passing Out Pieces" while "Chamber of Reflection" sounds like Sadé.
DeMarco’s earlier casual breeziness is gone. He sounds tired now, wrecked by success, booze and endless days in the van. He still has an incredible ear for a melody, it’s just not as fun as it used to be. But hey, that’s life right?
Listen to Mac DeMarco on Spotify
- Pitchfork Music Festival 2014 after-shows
- Pitchfork Music Festival
- 6 reasons to get to Pitchfork Music Festival early
- Concerts in Chicago in July
- Pitchfork Music Festival 2014, Saturday: Faces in the crowd
- North Coast Music Festival after-shows and after-parties
- Depraved New World
- Robyn & Röyksopp
- Beck dazzles on day one of Pitchfork Music Festival 2014
- Pitchfork Music Festival 2014, Friday: Faces in the crowd
How quickly success has latched itself onto Canadian singer and songwriter Mac
- Ultimate Pride playlist: The 50 best gay songs
- The real headliners of Lollapalooza 2014
- The 45 sexiest album covers of all time
- The 41 greatest Chicago albums of all time
- What will be the song of summer?
- The 7 worst Lollapalooza 2014 schedule conflicts
- 10 best Lollapalooza acts you might not know
- 10 sets to see at Lollapalooza 2014
- 11 must-see acts at Pitchfork Music Festival 2014
- Iggy Azalea at House of Blues photos
- The 50 best songs from ’80s movies
- The 50 best drinking songs
- The 50 best breakup songs
- The 50 best love songs ever made