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Mac DeMarco review: Sloppy show still kept fans happy at Enmore


Enmore Theatre, January 6


For some lucky bands, there is a time when they reach peak obsession and they can do no wrong in the eyes of an adoring crowd.

Case in point: Mac DeMarco at the Enmore Theatre.

The raggedy, gap-toothed Canadian easily sold out two shows at this venue, a huge step up from his Metro show just a year ago.


He is so revered among the legions of 20-something skate rats and stoner kids that most of them are dressed like him: wide-leg trousers, tucked in t-shirts, old Converse and flat brim caps.

And yet he delivered a weird, sloppy, nonchalant set of old, new and completely made-up material.

A year ago, DeMarco seemed to nail that mix of messy laziness and immaculate, entertaining so-called "slacker rock".

He was all over the place but it didn't stop him and his half-dressed band from ripping into 15-minute Metallica covers or eliciting huge sing-a-longs in radio hit Freaking Out the Neighbourhood.

This time, it felt like he was almost taking the piss: seeing how far he could push the "don't give shit" vibe until people actually realised they had paid a lot of money for a good show and were getting a car crash instead.

But, we're in peak obsession territory and the crowd only lapped it up.

He absently ambled between off-kilter pop and sleepy love songs, never quite giving his all at any moment. 

Lackadaisical ballads such as Chamber of Reflection and Another One could have oozed irresistibly with a slow burn but instead were like elevator music. 

The Stars Keep Calling My Name and Together attracted noisy sing-a-longs but were half-baked, squandering their twangy, bluesy guitar riffs.

And then, the band spent long periods messily playing bizarre instrumentals and a cover of Coldplay's Yellow that felt like they were making it up as they went.

In between, DeMarco lay on the ground, changed guitar strings and sat back to watch the endless stream of drunk fans jumping up on stage.

That's not to say it wasn't fun. Hilarious, rowdy, messy, fun.

Despite never being granted an explosive moment or a wild instrumental jam to lose our minds to, the audience still went berserk, throwing shoes (and ice-creams) on stage.

And DeMarco added in plenty of crowd surfs for good measure - outsourcing some to random friends and band members before finishing the night with his own journey around the Enmore.

There is something masochistic about how much he doesn't care. Somehow, the less he gives, the more we get.