Mac DeMarco: Salad Days (Captured Tracks) Review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Mac DeMarco

Salad Days

Captured Tracks

Apr 24, 2014 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

If past releases from Canada’s indie rock class clown Mac DeMarco proved anything, it’s that he’s not shy about playing the fool or writing songsand even entire EPsabout nothing much in particular. But on sophomore full-length effort Salad Daysrecorded in the midst of his hectic touring scheduleDeMarco nudges the looser and more absurdist elements of his early work to one side with a selection of tunes that offer increasingly earnest perspectives on his usual down-at-heel romanticism.

His lyrical preoccupations here coming from fears of wasted youth (“Salad Days”), lessons learnt in letting go of love (“Let Her Go”), the power of friendship (“Brother”), and the importance of treating women with respect (“Treat Her Right”); all are played out with a feeling of steadfast intimacy. While musically, he’s making gentle shifts towards greater variety on tracks such as “Passing the Pieces” and “Chamber of Reflection,” the former awash with queasy organs, and the latter drunk on synths.

If this sounds a bit heavy you needn’t worry, because he’s still just the same loveable slacker with the knack for writing brilliant pop music, his lilting vocals, sunny chords and infectious melodies washing across the album in much the same way as his debut. But Salad Days allows a darker and more insightful side to emerge from behind those upbeat rhythms and gap-toothed smiles; the results are a wistful, free-wheeling and intimate snapshot of DeMarco’s psyche-an album that is more complex than you might assume, but more rewarding for it. (

Author rating: 8.5/10

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Average reader rating: 7/10


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