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4/21 KUMD Album Review: Mac Demarco


Salad Days, The latest album from slack rock poster child, Mac Demarco, feels like waking up on the couch at 2 in the afternoon, lighting the first of a chain of cigarettes, and eating the pizza left out from last night. Mac attack is back and his new album is both familiar and adventurous. By Basement DJ: Lukas Hirsch

Like his previous albums, Salad Days is a solo album in its purest form. Mac wrote, performed, and recorded everything on the album by himself in his home studio. While Demarco's signature wobbly guitar tone and laid-back crooning returns in tracks like "Brother", "Blue Boy", and the title track, the addition of synthesizers in songs like "Chamber of Reflection", and horns in the album's lead single "Passing Out the Pieces" freshen Mac's sonic pallet while still sounding natural in his songwriting.

"Chamber of Reflection" is a standout track on the album partially because it was so unexpected. Since the days of Demarco's previous project Makeout Videotape, his 30-dollar Frankenstein monster of a guitar never left his side until this song. Hazy synths layered with soft vocals emulate the cigarette wafting through his apartment, and lyrically, we see a more introspective and frustrated side of Mac.

"Goodbye Weekend" is another high point, and features one of the more memorable guitar lines of the album. His beautifully out of tune style of riffing is back and harkens back to his previous album. However, this track is not as playful as songs like 'Freaking Out the Neighborhood" and 'The Stars Keep On Calling My Name' as Mac gets a little angsty with lyrics dismissing pressure from others to change his lifestyle as he ages.

Salad Days is another solid release from Demarco. While there are enough deviations from '2' to make this a distinct album, it doesn't stray too far away from the Mac formula to alienate old fans.

Recommended tracks: Goodbye Weekend, Chamber of Reflection, Let Her Go, Salad Days, Let My Baby Stay

RIYL: Feelings, Pizza, Real Estate