Mac DeMarco - Salad Days
Critic Score
Based on 27 reviews
2014 Ratings: #97 / 1004
Year End Rank: #19
User Score
2014 Ratings: #49
Liked by 42 people
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With songs touching on themes of maturation, life in the public eye, and good old-fashioned romance, DeMarco has trimmed the fat both musically and conceptually on Salad Days, turning in a streamlined picture of his musical development.

A.V. Club

Though DeMarco certainly hasn’t ditched his slacker aesthetic, Salad Days is nonetheless a strikingly mature achievement for the 23-year-old.


The guitar sounds throughout Salad Days are pristine, the lyrics sublime and the vocals… the Lennon-isms are often befuddling but they can only be applauded.


Mac DeMarco might be the wild and crazy showman on stage, but Salad Days shows there's plenty of tenderness behind that shit-eating, gap-toothed grin.


Sweet, soulful little man that he is, Mac knows better than to let his bellyaching get in the way of everyone else's good time — instead, he’s simply dialled down the quirk and written his best record yet.

Loud and Quiet

This is an LP combining the pop artist’s unashamed desire to occupy your head all day long and the storyteller’s authenticity, with astounding, electrifying skill.


His second full-length, Salad Days, isn’t a departure from its predecessor so much as a richer, increasingly assured refinement. For all its internal contradictions, Salad Days is no more or less than a great album in a tradition of no-big-deal great albums.

Under The Radar

The results are a wistful, free-wheeling and intimate snapshot of DeMarco's psyche-an album that is more complex than you might assume, but more rewarding for it.

Pretty Much Amazing

For all the pomp and circumstance preceding Salad Days, this is still an album that DeMarco recorded in his Brooklyn walkup. It’s a record that boasts glaring maturity without diminishing the iconic immaturity.

The Line of Best Fit

The record also proves that maturity does not mean creative death – this is complete album and in many ways his best.


The songs only sound sleeker, more melodic, more intensely stoned. That's DeMarco in sum, and thankfully he's not retreating into his shell just yet.


His patron saints appear to be Harry Nilsson and yacht rockers like 10cc, and rarely are either channeled with this little cheese and this much panache. He merges these influences with what's quickly become his signature guitar sound, an effortless style that can be playfully discordant.

No Ripcord

The romantic in De Marco is now very much a presence in his life, far from it being a farce, and adroitly balances those feelings of solitude and intimacy by clasping dearly to the everyday proportions that make his life complete.


The lazy melodies, off-kilter vocals and haphazard, plaintive strumming all converge to produce a record of fragmented brilliance.

The Guardian

Salad Days isn't the stuff of mainstream success, but it strongly suggests his cult is only going to get bigger.


This is art that is confidently immature, and it begs the question: why can’t sophomoric art still be great? 


The progression that Salad Days shows is encouraging, even if the album starts to peter out at the end. 

Rolling Stone

Salad Days is packed with wry, knowing lyrics and washed-out vocals, like a meeting of Stephen Malkmus and Marc Bolan.

Wondering Sound

He uses humor and bemused detachment to hint at a deeper pathos he can’t (or won’t) articulate in his oft-beautiful, always slippery songs.

Northern Transmissions

Salad Days loses a lot of the patently ridiculous persona that DeMarco has put so earnestly into his previous releases. In itself, it’s not a terrible loss, because the end result is a high-polish pop album that is more cohesive than any of his older work.

Consequence of Sound

It’s a half-baked portrait of a creative personality rung dry and yet still yearning for something new. It’s rare to see an identity crisis like this so early in the career of a promising artist, but DeMarco doesn’t spend time wallowing.

Time Out London

The chord changes aren’t as sharp, the melodies not as direct, the lyrics not as catchy. By the end you almost feel as tired as him. He still has an incredible ear for a melody, it’s just not as fun as it used to be.

I have someone in my school who loves rock music (he a mainstreamed tho, like he love Queen and Guns n Roses...), and I used to hate on him because he was so crazy about it. But now after listening to a good amount of rock/punk album, I can say that some are pretty amazing.

Ok so, on the first day of school, I told him "Rock music is good", and be told "I don't like rock music anymore". So I asked then "ok, then what do you like?" And this nibba says "Indie ... read more
Honestly a bit too same-y for its own good. “Let Her Go” and “Chamber of Reflection” are still great though.

Standout: Let Her Go
Favs: Blue Boy, Goodbye Weekend, Chamber of Reflection

Least fav: Salad Days
An instant album

Mac absolutely delivers with the sequel to one of my favorite albums of all time, with a project that's eyecatching and fun at every moment, and that also serves as the turning point in his career.

I really like this album, and I swear, it's one of the most enjoyable albums I've ever listened to. Mac decides to make an album that tackles themes he lived through while making the album and also continues making amazing instrumentals and guitar riffs, while also experimenting ... read more
Is Salad Days the deepest and most impactful album I've heard, no not really, not even close and I'm sure many would agree with me on that considering how few perfect scores this thing gets. But to me, this album is still perfect in every sense of the word.

I discovered Mac DeMarco in high school and as typical as it may be I really loved the sound of Mac's work as I was also a slacker myself, the kind of person who was always calm, didn't really have any work ethic and just winged my way ... read more
Mac's gift to the world. The Guitars are incredible, the songwriting is timeless, and the production is dreamy. What is so special is that you don't just fall in love with the music, you fall in love with Mac. It feels like his heart is in every song. I actively flail when 'Chamber of Reflection' comes on because I will never be emotionally ready for that song. I have been obsessed since the first time I heard him whisper shit at the beginning of 'Brother.' It is an album that never feels ... read more
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Added on: January 21, 2014