2015 | Breakthrough Artist of the Year (Sponsored by FACTOR and Radio Starmaker Fund) | Mac DeMarco | | The JUNO Awards

“As I’m getting older, chip up on my shoulder…” is the opening line from Mac DeMarco’s second full-length LP Salad Days, the follow up to 2012’s lauded Mac DeMarco 2. Amongst that familiar croon and lilting guitar, that initial line from the title track sets the tone for an LP of a maturing singer/songwriter/ producer.
Salad Days gives the listener a personal insight into what it’s all about to be Mac amidst the craziness of a rising career in a public format. The lead single, “Passing Out Pieces,” contains lines like “…never been reluctant to share, passing out pieces of me…” “Chamber of Reflection,” a track featuring icy synth stabs and soulful crooning, wouldn’t be out of place on a fantasy Shuggie Otis/Prince collaboration. Standout tracks like these show Mac’s widening sound, whether insights into future directions or even welcome one-off forays into new territory.
We’re only in Part 2 1/2 (one EP and two LP’s in) of Mac’s career. As you read, he’ll probably be on tour, or preparing for one… or maybe writing new music. A relentless work ethic is admirable, but when it’s of the quality Mac is giving us, it starts to turn from admiration to awe.