Live Review: Mac DeMarco // O2 Academy, Bristol – 26/11/17

As Mac DeMarco’s most prolific year to date draws to a close, the second leg of the This Old Dog tour headed to Bristol’s O2 Academy. With Montero in tow, the evening was filled with artistic excellence.

Emerging on stage backed by a slapstick introduction based off the skits on his album Rock and Roll Nightclub, the man of the hour brought the crowd into the palm of his hands with ‘On The Level’.  Having seen Mac DeMarco’s live show develop and change since his legendary London dates in 2014, it was actually quite surreal to see the cult phenomena in full swing still. Drifting through his eclectic host of albums, the volatile shifts in sound played testament to DeMarco’s musical ability. Switching from synth-laden tunes like ‘For The First Time’ and ‘Chamber of Reflection’ to indie-rock belters ‘Let Her Go’ and ‘Freaking Out The Neighbourhood’, the crowd remained as into it as they were for the big hits.

Playing to his joker persona, DeMarco and his band kept the fun going all night by passing jokes off at each other and at their sound technicians. Undeniably, the contrast in the sincerity of songs played including ‘My Old Man’ and ‘Moonlight On The River’ and all the fun had was interesting and enticing, and definitely highlighted what sets DeMarco apart from the all-too-serious music scene. As well, his more heartfelt tracks like ‘My Kind Of Woman’ and ‘No Other Heart’ held just as much adoration as the almost iconic tracks ‘Ode To Viceroy’ and ‘Cooking Up Something Good’. Engrossingly so, the set morphed in such a way that it was the newer tracks stealing the show – namely hip-hop tinged ‘One More Love Song’ and dance-along ‘A Wolf Who Wears Sheep’s Clothes’.

As his main set rounded off, in traditional DeMarco style, ‘Still Together’ was wheeled out. Followed by an energetic medley hosting covers of ‘Don’t Fear The Reaper’, ‘Paranoid’, ‘I Believe In A Thing Called Love’ and ‘Under The Bridge’, Mac and his band left the stage triumphant.

Mac DeMarco’s set was earnest, and it was fun; the career-spanning set added to the quality of performance as almost every song was as good as the next. He may be an old dog on the scene, but he’s certainly not lacking in new tricks.

For further tour dates and all things Mac, head to his Facebook page.

Words by Jasmin Robinson

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Jasmin Robinson

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