Review: Mac DeMarco @ O2 Academy

Published

Credit: Ticketfly

Benjamin Coulson
Writer

Mac DeMarco delivers an expansive setlist during his O2 Academy show, laced with the usual mischief characteristic of his gigs and a few special delights to entertain the Scottish crowd.

The crowd are in high spirits before Mac takes centre stage. An ode to the Limmy Show is displayed on the backdrop, presenting one of Glasgow’s own, Brian Limond, in a series of surreal and bizarre sketches. The atmosphere of the crowd continues to grow for Mac and the band as they waltz on-stage to Frank Sinatra and dive straight into On the Level, a track offering chilled out vibes to an ecstatic crowd, to which Mac swings his mic and dances around the stage before making a segue into fan favourite, Salad Days.

Mac continuously treats the crowd to a rollercoaster of songs stretching throughout his back catalogue, going from a slow jam to an up-tempo classic, as though they’re making their setlist up as they move through the night. Before going into The Stars Keep on Calling My Name, Mac and the band pause to talk to the crowd and guzzle a bottle of Buckfast. The band let the Glasgow crowd know how much they are loved and bassist, Jon Lent, shares his disdain for England compared to the Scottish crowd, stating “It’s just so chill the further north you go.”

Mac DeMarco, the slacker hero, has certainly slowed things down in his more recent albums, and this doesn’t look like it will change any time soon as he premiers a new track, I Like Her on this tour. Mac owns up to the cheesy title of the new song, asking permission to play it from the crowd, who give it a thunderous reception. The song would’ve fit in well on his most recent album, Here Comes the Cowboy, as he leads with his acoustic guitar and serenades the audience with silky-smooth lyrics. Mac does not disappoint fans of his older material as he transports the audience back to his first album, Rock and Roll Night Club, playing the titular track to a delighted crowd.

The night comes to a climax, as ever, with Still Together, which has become a staple of Mac’s set finale for many years now. The band fades out after a final yodelling chorus and it seems as though the gig has reached a glorious end. But Mac has a different idea for this crowd – and has Lewis Capaldi join him on stage. The crowd project ear-piercing screams, though this soon settles down as they realise it is not Lewis Capaldi, but rather a different Glaswegian bloke that just so happens to have a slight resemblance to Lewis Capaldi.

The lookalike comes with a message: register to vote. The band then proceed to perform a chaotic rendition of It’s Over and Done With by Scottish legends The Proclaimers, ridding the mind of any doubt that Mac wholly enjoys his time in Scotland whenever he visits. After Mac and the band walk off-stage to signal the end of the gig, chants of “one more song” erupt throughout the venue. The fake Lewis Capaldi comes back on-stage and the crowd greets him with a round of boos, to which he laughs off and introduces Mac back to the stage. Mac announces that “We’re gonna do one we haven’t done in a while, this is Blue Boy” which is met by passionate cheers. The crowd are left bemused when the band launch into a bizarre but entertaining rendition of Enter Sandman by Metallica, with this climax perfectly encapsulating what has been a usual night at a unique Mac DeMarco gig.