Written by Eddie Ferranti
Mar 13, 2012 at 07:30 PM
ImageWe nearly missed a killer Canadian duo when they slid into H-Town under the monikor of ‘Whitehorse’ instead of Doucet & McClelland! Rose & I caught Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland in January 2011 at this same intimate venue, McGonigel’s Mucky Duck, and we were impressed. The duo are so easy going and just plain nice people, which is such a nice thing to experience.

Rocking in the chairs outside the Mucky Duck we discussed the nice weather and what had happened to the once beautiful Memorial Park, where they had just taken a jog at. LD inquired: “Was there a tornado recently?”  To which I informed him of the fall out of the bad drought Texas had experienced. He shared the story on stage which was cool !

They cut a new self titled CD and featured it heavily this night. To hear these two perform you would have thought there were at least two more members by they way they ‘produced’ multiple sounds through modern technology. Being able to do instant recordings of refrains and play them back as ‘back-up’ singers was beyond slick and effective to enhance the spooky ambiance that they exude together. Doucet using a bass drum (He dubbed himself the Ringo Starr of Indie Rock!)  and McClelland sliding effortlessly to keys was very versatile to say the least.

Cuts like “Killing Time is Murder” ruled by using freakin’ telephones hooked up thru the mikes!  The repeating refrain: “When all is said and done, time will waste everyone” was right on and to the point.  Melissa has an oozing sexuality that evolves more as the gig rolls on.  Her captivating presence on “Passenger 24″ blended so well wth Luke’s killer voice, too.  Don’t forget Doucet’s underated and smokin’ hot guitar licks also. Dude resembles Angus Young and when he cuts loose, it can be spellbinding stuff.

The chemistry of ‘Whitehorse” with their weirdo technology works well. They are married and you can tell they like to play to each others strengths which are many. Springsteen’s “I’m On Fire” was a smoothly crafted and pleasant to the ear version. McClelland’s “Glenrio” sizzled with Doucet’s groovin’ guitar and lines like : “I’ve got blood on my knuckles from her pretty lips!”.

The two of them have captured many awards over the years such as Juno, Canadian Folk Music, and the Polaris Prize to name a few. The mystifying musical marriage that is ‘Whitehorse’ should continue to grow in unmistakeabley skyward as the project moves forward.  They are located – for now – in New York City which should help them hone their act. As Melissa stated though:”Someday we’d like to say we live nowhere. We love a lot of places!”  Classic.

The debut CD is a musical mish mash in a good way and I for one will stay on the trail wherever this ‘Whitehorse’ gallops…………..God Bless and go see something will ya?!