Mac DeMarco - This Old Dog
This Old Dog
Mac DeMarco, the singer seems like a different person than Mac DeMarco the personality. Especially on this new record, his third, DeMarco feels understated and open but never losing that real refined sense of wit. Then there is the personality, getting naked in videos, constantly joking around and sort of just existing from moment to moment. DeMarco is the lovable shlub with a ton of talent, a position which used to be occupied by John Mayer in the early 2000s. Ideally you would like to separate the two or have them find some kind of unity but that as of yet has not happened. This Old Dog vacillates between dreamy bedroom synth pop like "For the First Time" to the more pinning tracks like "Sister". There are moments of brightness like on "One Another" where the more funky style comes forward, but it always seems like DeMarco is concerned with not boxing himself in even if the album has a particular vibe. Mac DeMarco seems like a person that can quickly become bored with a particular sound, which is why He tends to really throw in some out there tracks. However these songs are necessary to avoid falling into some acoustic trap where each song is just another basic love song over and over again. The little guitar elements DeMarco throws in really do elevate his songs bringing them much more life than they would have otherwise had.
One thing really missing on This Old Dog is some kind of change up so that all the record does not sound so similar. "A Wolf Who Wears Sheep's Clothes" is clearly DeMarco doing his best Dylan impression, but it is not all that bad in it's delivery. You would think that three albums in DeMarco's sound may be getting a bit stale but it never really does, He manages to keep each track feeling fresh and sounding great even if they impact of the songs is not as exciting as it once was. DeMarco's confidence in the studio is something to marvel at with a song like "On the Level" sounding so very pleasing in the ears. This Old Dog is perfectly nice just do not expect it to blow you away or have you running to tell your friends about it, the record is just really nice. DeMarco didn't aim particularly high with this record and so it just sort of lives right in the middle. The next album will likely be the one where DeMarco will need to really set himself apart if He wants to continue down this path.
6.9 out of 10