In 1998’s ‘The Big Lebowski’, Jeff Bridges’ drawled “Um, I am not “Mr. Lebowski”. You’re Mr. Lebowski. I’m the Dude.” However, Jeff Lebowski is no longer the Dude: Mac Demarco is.
Demarco has now become somewhat of a cult hero since releasing odd-ball jangle pop gem Salad Days last year. With it he united a generation of young people all over the world with similar dirty hair, goofy smiles and carefree outlooks. It was an unexpected fame, leading him to sell-out concerts and even being able to sell an old pair of his trainers for $21,000. Fame can change an artist, label pressure increases, you can’t go to the places you once did without being swarmed and you enter the cross-hairs of every music critic in the western world. This has crippled many a promising artist; not Demarco.
Another One is an effortless, beautiful, irrepressibly joyful experience. Every tremolo-laden twang of guitar bristles with Demarco’s personality and it will take a listener far colder than I to not have their heart-melted by it. ‘The Way You Loved Her’ is a breezy and charming opening and submerses you completely in the singer’s love-struck world.
Demarco’s devotion to his long-time girlfriend Kiki is a major theme through all his albums, and Another One is no exception. In a time where moody angst is the flavour of the day, Demarco’s full-on love letters should be cringe-worthy yet they’re anything but. Demarco’s smiley sincerity is completely disarming and any lingering doubts about monogamy being uncool and a death-knell for interesting lyrics are washed away by the sweet tide of guitars.
The whole album is refreshingly natural and easy in an era where over-production butchers so many albums. Demarco is so carefree that at the end of his final track ‘My House by the Water’ he even reads out his address in Brooklyn and extends an invitation to fans to come round for a coffee. He’ll probably be surprised by how many knocks on the door he gets. It’s a testament to how giddy and immersive an experience Another One is that I found myself wondering how much flights to New York are going for this time of year.