Whitehorse: The Fate of the World Depends on This Kiss (Six Shooter) 

This Canadian husband-and-wife duo trade in a rootsy form of Americana that is informed by a bluesy grittiness and a palpable sense of pop melody. Their second album together is a triumph—haunting here, tender there.

Singer-songwriters Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland often trade verses in classic pop-duet style—such as on the leadoff track "Achilles' Desire," and the charming "Mismatched Eyes (Boat Song)"—but their stuff is undeniably catchy when they sing in unison. Such is the case with "Devil's Got a Gun," which makes good use of modified Latin rhythms.

No tune here sounds overtly alt-country, probably because Doucet and McClelland seem to trust their instincts rather than assemble a bunch of prefab, format-fitting mission statements. But the record has enough echoes and shades of that genre to give it a genuine, homespun mood, as on "Peterbilt Coalmine," with that irresistible booming baritone guitar.

Both play guitar, actually, but Doucet provides formidable, snarling leads throughout, especially on the burbling, funky "Jane," and the film-noirish "No Glamour in the Hammer." Piano takes the fore occasionally, too, as in the melancholic "Cold July," on which McClelland sings lead in her delicate alto.

On this killer album, Whitehorse often demonstrate an intensity and an intimacy that may remind some listeners of a pop-rock version of Gillian Welch and David Rawlings.

More by Gene Armstrong

  • Primer

    Tony Furtado
    • May 29, 2014
  • Wills Meets Reinhardt

    L.A.'s Cow Bop blends bebop and Western swing into a superbly danceable combo
    • May 22, 2014
  • Learning From Lennon

    Nothing personal, Paul McCartney. Bill Frisell started playing John Lennon's music by accident
    • May 15, 2014
  • More »


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

The Range

Song of the Day: 'Cosmic Love Song No. 23' by Louise Le Hir

The Lantern Fest: Get Your Shine On

Fill Up On Beer, Bands and Brats at 4thtober Fest

More »

Latest in Rhythm & Views

  • Rhythm & Views

    American Monoxide “In Flight Mode” (People In A Position To Know)
    • Dec 18, 2014
  • Rhythm & Views

    Wight Lhite “Beyond the Satellites” (Paisley Shirt Records)
    • Dec 11, 2014
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • Noise Annoys

    Mute Swan and the Curse of Local Hype
    • Oct 20, 2016
  • Honky Tonk Girl

    How this Tucson 19-year-old might trip the country electric
    • Sep 29, 2016
  • More »

Facebook Activity

© 2016 Tucson Weekly | 7225 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation