Mac DeMarco – ‘Another One’

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The slacker musician enriches and refines 'Salad Days'' style on this concept mini-album about love

There’s been some fantastic music released in mini album format recently – Robyn and Röyksopp’s ‘Do It Again’, Snoop Dogg and Dâm-Funk’s ‘7 Days Of Funk’, Parkay Quarts’ ‘Tally All the Things That You Broke’, Best Coast’s ‘Fade Away’, and you can now add Mac Demarco’s ‘Another One’ to the list. He calls it “a concept album about love”, but it’s not pompous and there’s no narrative arc – it’s just eight more DeMarco songs all concerning love; even, you sense, ‘My House By The Water’, an instrumental closer made up of only a keyboard line and the sound of the Atlantic ocean lapping the shore outside his apartment in Far Rockaway, New York. (Oddly, he ends the song by giving out his address and inviting anyone to “stop on by” for a “cup of coffee”.)

DeMarco, originally from Canada, self-recorded the eight typically laid-back tracks (flange guitar, simple drums, soft vocals) at his apartment on a break from touring earlier this year and they feel like a stopgap only in the sense that he’s a prolific writer who likes to get his music out there fast. His next record, ‘Some Other Ones’ – nine instrumentals – has already been released (for free on July 8), suggesting he’s either given up being ruled by his relentless tour schedule or he’s riding a wave of creativity, and probably a bit of both. ‘Another One’ neither sounds particularly different to his last album, 2014’s ‘Salad Days’, nor does it give much indication of where he’ll go next; rather it does for ‘Salad Days’ what ‘Salad Days’ did for his previous album, ‘2’ – offers added richness and refinement to his very songbook style of writing.

Perhaps alarmed by how deeply ‘Salad Days’ was scrutinised, Mac forsakes the explicitly personal on ‘Another One’ and tackles the emotions of love – jealousy (‘Another One’), frustration (‘A Heart Like Hers’), longing (‘I’ve Been Waiting For Her’, ‘Without Me’) – as they apply to anyone. He might be trying to shake off fascination in his private life (and perhaps he’ll enjoy ‘Another One’ flying lower under the radar, as mini albums do), but there’s nothing about the record that feels like a dodge. To be able to write with universality is the mark of a songwriter’s ambition growing, and here Mac DeMarco is transitioning into one of the best around.

Details

Director: Mac DeMarco
Record label: Captured Tracks
Release date: 07 Aug, 2015