Mac Demarco's show at Red Rocks Amphitheater on October 6th was no less than a slimy religious experience. Oozing with grease and the stale smell of Viceroy cigarettes, Mac Demarco, along with Snail Mail and Thundercat, put on a show that was truly one of a kind.
Snail Mail kicked off the night, strolling casually on stage in a thick turtleneck, sweatpants, and vans. It was clear that the solo artist, 20 year Lindsey Jordan, came with the intention of letting the music speak for itself. Frigid air and grey skies hung over the amphitheater, blanketing the venue with a vampiric mysticism that perfectly complemented Snail Mail’s sound. Famous for her psychedelic Dream Pop sound, her performance demonstrated an immense amount of potential as an up and coming indie artist.
As the sun began to set, bassist and songwriter Stephen Bruner, otherwise known as Thundercat, waltzed on stage. Known for his eclectic sound, his music emanated aspects of punk, R&B, and funk all at once. His musicality was impressive, and his smooth voice was intoxicating. Stylistically, many of his songs were reminiscent of jazz bebop form, lacking much structure, with emphasis on creativity and solo performance. Layers of electronic and psychedelic sounds, however, tied a common thread between Thundercat, Snail Mail, and Mac’s performances.
Red Rocks marked the final show of Demarco’s US tour. Mac came on stage with electric energy, Nintendo sweatshirt and fanny pack in tow. Swinging his microphone around, doing handstands, and belching into the microphone, he immediately engaged the audience with his quirky personality. Mac’s setlist was a composition of both old and new material, playing songs such as Cooking Up Something Good, My Old Man, and Ode to Viceroy. His vocals were near impeccable, and his signature sound possessed the crowd.
During “Choo Choo,” a track off of Mac’s 2019 album. A fairly inebriated Lindsey Jordan reappeared on stage, much less subdued than in her opening set. Taking Macs guitar, she proceeded to aggressively play the guitar, accompanied by impassioned screaming into the microphone. The entire audience, as well as Mac, seemed to be slightly shocked by her performance. At one point, Mac trapped Snail Mail between himself and his guitar and played for her while she sang. Andy White, Mac’s guitarist, even thanked her for her “excellent Howard Dean impression” after she screamed.
Thundercat also reappeared on stage towards the end of the show, jamming on the bass while Mac played the guitar, both demonstrating multifaceted talent and musicality. Mac invited the crowd to “sit low” and “pretend to be at the greatest rock show of all time.” Jumping back up for the chorus, the entire crowd was exhilarated, screaming at the top of their lungs. Encapsulating the dedication of Mac’s fans and his influence as a performer, Mac cultivated a raw moment that was unlike anything I have ever experienced.
At the end of the night, what was left of the crowd flooded towards the stage for an encore. While many fans expected “Blue Boy,” one of Demarco’s most popular songs, to be the final song, the audience received a much crustier encore than they bargained for. As Mac screamed “I am a Demon I am Satan,” Andy White began to play “Enter Sandman,” an iconic Metallica song. Mac had the entire crowd headbanging once again. Leaving it all on the floor, Demarco disappeared from the stage in an instant. Leaving the audience in awe, it was an absolutely unparalleled performance by a charmingly bizarre individual.
Review by Reilly Ernst
Photos by Anjala Katuri