“I’ve had enough of the music industry’s fooling around. I’m sick and tired of it.”
It was 7 p.m., but it was still scorching hot under the sizzling heat. The sound of cicadas filled the year. Monday afternoon, it was behind the backstage of the Yes24 Live Hall in Gwangjin-gu, Seoul where the interview with Canadian singer song writer Mac DeMarco took place. He sat on the cement floor, as casually and cool as the indie pop star he is. Sitting beside a superstar of indie music with one million Instragram followers, your reporter felt like sitting next to a neighborhood friend. The following is an interview with the ‘cool’ Mac.
—The lyrics of your recent song (“This Old Dog” released in 2017) feature much about the past, about scattered dreams. Your thoughts are like a 48 year old, instead of only 28.
“I toured around the world since I was twenty. I’ve met many people and been through a lot. Maybe that’s why I keep reflecting on the past. The future, plans, objectives, ambitions…these don’t interest me.”
―Your iconic sound is like from a broken record, which is attractive.
“It’s because I use reel tape when I record music, the old fashioned way. It makes synthesizers, drum machines, guitars sound more real. Everyone uses computer sound these days, but I’m not in to it. It sounds like all the emotions have been removed.”
―The music is lazy and lo-fi(music produced deliberately with a low budget), but you seem to have strong passion for creativity. Isn’t that contradictory?
“That’s true. But for me, music production itself is self-healing. I hope people who listen to the music feel the same way. That’s it. Yet creation is extremely addictive.”
―Hyuk Oh was the opening band for your first concert in Korea in 2015. They play again this time. What are they like?
“When I heard their music for the first time, they sounded like King Krule (British musician), but their style has changed in the new album. Their music is cool and good. I heard they are making it quite big.”
―Yes. How do you see yourself in thirty years?
“First of all, I hope I would be still alive, possibly doing music work. I hope I have a family. I’d probably be uglier, but that’s okay.”
―What type of music interests you recently?
“Ryichi Sakamoto’s new album ‘async’. And Shin Joong-hyun. An American music label that I like sent me his CD. I love every type of music that is different from what I play every night. Ha-ha.”
DeMarco puts his home address randomly in his CDs. He makes coffee for his fans who come to his place. Later he handed your reporter a name card. When the website address was searched, it was linked to a secret YouTube account that broadcasted DeMarco’s band practice.