Mac DeMarco
This Old Dog


3.5
great

Review

by Hayley Sullivan USER (2 Reviews)
May 12th, 2017 | 27 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The DeMarco interview we've yet to see.

12:30 A.M. You've been perusing through the telly when your non-committal channel surfing is interrupted by a bunch of vertical multicolored bars. Frustrated, or as much as you can be in this dormant state, you lie there waiting for your quality programming to pop back up on the screen. The bars become something to watch. And staring at those vibrantly colored, yet empty and unmoving lines, you notice your eyes have been burning. You notice how late it's getting, how uncomfortably those chip crumbs have been nestled under your shirt all night. And you notice that you don't remember the entertaining content you've been ingesting for the past eight hours. In the midst of the concentrated TV projection and the acquired grogginess, you come across some overwhelmingly nondramatic realizations. You pick yourself up, brush the snack remains off of your chest, click the power button, and get some rest for the next cycle. This Old Dog sees Mac DeMarco gazing into the afterglow and coming across some uncustomary awareness, finding moments of dread turning into reassurance and turning back once again.

Mac sees himself becoming his father, growing old, slowing down in My Old Man. This Old Dog comforts his love, and himself, by searching for the advantages of growing set in his ways and remaining faithful. But as we see in his shifting experiences and feelings throughout the album is that Mac is not growing stagnant in his behavior, but paradoxically in his cycles of behavior. He transitions into denial over the departure of his girlfriend in For the First Time. This devolves into reaction formation in One Another, as Mac feigns acceptance of the end of their relationship, which devolves back into undying love in Still Beating.

Finally, in One More Love Song, Mac observes the unending consolidation and deterioration of his romantic life. Yet it seems to go beyond simply his love life. He chides "one more love out to break your heart", yet titles the track "One More Love Song". It's yet another love song by Mr. DeMarco, but with a meta twist. He's written about love and heartbreak before, but now he's looking back on them as an older, wiser man. With his newfound understanding, Mac more directly addresses what started the cycle in the first place - his father. Yet instead of merely noting disappointing similarities to his dad, as in the starting track, he contemplates getting in touch with him. He considers breaking his sluggish cycle and receiving some closure from the originating source of his patterns.

Lyrically, Mac's songwriting on This Old Dog is distinct from his previous work. His revelations aren't extravagant, but they convey more with less, as Mac attempts to swallow them along with us. Conversely, the musical songwriting is rather familiar. More cautious, but familiar. A man seeing new faces in old friends. Together they drive home the idea that Mac is reaching an awakened internal state in which he comprehends his damaging, cyclical behavior, but is swept up in his established lifestyle and struggles to transcend it.


user ratings (144)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
brandontaylor
May 12th 2017


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this album has probably grown to be on par with salad days for me, its melodies are so simple but effective. lacks the obvious highlights of his previous albums but makes up for it in consistency.

Faraudo
May 12th 2017


1475 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Moonlight on the River is definitely a career-highlight for Mac.

butcherboy
May 12th 2017


1420 Comments


Loved the review, even though the album is a bore.. p-o-s.........................

Gnodab
May 12th 2017


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

It's very chill, not boring. The guy knows how to create nice melodies, i just wish there where more songs like moonlight on the river though.

Gnodab
May 12th 2017


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Woops double post

Gnodab
May 12th 2017


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Third time's a charm right?

Gnodab
May 12th 2017


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

WoW sorry internet fucked up there

LandDiving
May 12th 2017


144 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

good shiiit hayley :]

brainmelter
May 12th 2017


3797 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

been hearing this shit absolutely everywhere

Digging: Vortex of End - Fvlgvr Lvx Terror

LethalPaintball
May 12th 2017


299 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

pretty solid review, have a pos

album is a bore [2]

Digging: Feist - Pleasure

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
May 12th 2017


12998 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good chillout album imo

Digging: mathew lee cothran - Judas Hung Himself in America

rabidfish
May 12th 2017


2511 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

The definitive Demarco album... If he makes more music in this style he's doomed to fail.

This is what Heartattack & Vine was for the Bukowski Blue-era Tom Waits.



He's perfected this sound, time to move on.

Digging: Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith - Ears

theBoneyKing
May 12th 2017


9393 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

I can see why people find this boring but I'm loving it.

Digging: Slowdive - Souvlaki

Gnodab
May 12th 2017


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the production is incredible, I assume he did it himself, which makes it even more impressive

DoofusWainwright
Contributing Reviewer
May 12th 2017


12998 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is probably his best, but I've only listened through once so far. I really rate 'Chamber of Reflection' off 'Salad Days' so I like that he's recorded some more similar stuff here.

theBoneyKing
May 12th 2017


9393 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah the production on this is really great.

I hear that too Doof, lots of synths on here. He should go full synthpop on his next album.

SullyGirl
May 12th 2017


6 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is my first review, and I sincerely appreciate all of the positivity and respectful discussion. Thank you guys!

nolerthebowler
May 13th 2017


569 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

jams

Digging: D'Angelo - Black Messiah

Faraudo
May 15th 2017


1475 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Album's addicting as fuck, such an easy and chill listen. And it also has pretty good, honest and down to earth kinda lyrics.

tom79
May 15th 2017


3526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Just bumped my rating up, really grew on me

Digging: Digger - Monte Carlo



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