Mac Demarco is a pretty cool dude. Even if you’re not the biggest fan of his music, he does feature brightly in a lot of interviews because of his adorable desire to keep things chill. He’s made some pretty huge strides since bursting onto the scene with 2012’s 2, and looks set to continue this wave with new record This Old Dog.
Some criticisms for Mac’s music is it often can seem to noodle into nothingness. Certain songs sound too off-centre to stick in the brain, or the use of guitar effects has been over-indulged a little too much. Fortunately for those who state the above, This Old Dog sees Mac Demarco head in a new direction as the new record heads for a straight and narrow approach to music.
Opening track ‘My Old Man’ is a simple ode to a time where people would sit on the front porch and spend their time playing the guitar in the heavy sunshine. It’s warm acoustic chords provide a steady instrumental for Mac’s cool vocals to meander between the layers, making for an easy going, nice beginning to the new record.
The use of heavy reverb and various other effects takes it easy on the record. The title track dominates the airwaves with another round of solid acoustic work, while an effective sweep on guitar weeps in the background. ‘For the First Time’ sees Mac introduce synths into This Old Dog, and while it does shake up the primarily acoustic beginning it does maintain the atmosphere that had been produced. This new approach allows for a more accessible sound without stripping it completely of Mac’s quirks, making everybody happy.
This Old Dog is a matured record, and one that showcases a steady progression for Mac Demarco as he holds off a little on the quirks and focuses on his songwriting talents instead. This new record is a very easy-going listen, filled with little gems of instrumental goodness and a lot of insightful explorations into what makes Mac Demarco so darn loveable.