Mac DeMarco’s Teenage Cult


by Anika Rastgir

Before I set foot in Variety Playhouse, I absorbed the notion that I was the oldest and probably least stylish person in line for Mac DeMarco’s concert. Droves of youths lined the venue in their high-waisted jeans and brightly colored retro Hawaiian shirts. Inside, they passed around a single “tallboy,” presumably bought by someone of actual drinking age within the mostly teenage crowd.

Although Another One, DeMarco’s latest album is littered with beachy-sounding love songs that inspire measured swaying during a private listen, his concerts take on another experience. As soon as he came on stage, the masses started moshing and crowd-surfing while some clutched their newly purchased vinyl or t-shirts shielding them from being swallowed by the raucous crowd.

Who else can make camo overalls look so good??

Who else can make camo overalls look so good??

DeMarco seems to be someone who fell into being a musician and decided to keep going with it. He is irreverent and a tad lackadaisical, strumming his guitar even when crowd surfers found themselves on his stage. When “Ode to Viceroy” came on, his voice was mostly drowned out by the crowd calling after their messiah.

A Mac DeMarco concert is not for the fainthearted, though it’s a refreshing change of scenery from concerts where people are glued to their phones. His fans reflect the high energy he gives off. He’s just having fun on the stage and with concert goers, taking part in the crowd surfing, even after some youths nearly dropped him a couple of times. Although he doesn’t take himself too seriously, he still produces effortlessly breezy tunes with gentle strums of his guitar.

He closed with the raucous and head banging cover of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” contrasting sharply against the sound of his previous albums.

If you’ve never listened to Mac DeMarco you should check out: Salad Days, Chamber of Reflection, and Another One.

If you are familiar with Mac DeMarco’s work and will be in the NYC area, I highly recommend visiting his house in the Rockaways, after all, he did extend an invitation to fans in “My House by the Water,” an unsurprising decision given DeMarco’s open disposition towards his fervent fans.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

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