Sunday, March 1, 2015


More pop noir from Canada's coolest couple, Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland. Expanding on the sound of the previous The Fate of the World Depends on This Kiss, everything gets drums and bass now, but it's still the centered around the core strengths of the duo: co-lead vocals, big and strong guitar playing, and everything drenched in echo.

Mystery, sadness, hints of worse are dotted throughout the songs. Lead cut Baby What's Wrong? asks the question to a lover who has a dark secret. Downtown is the polar opposite of Petula Clark's '60's version of hip urban living; instead Whitehorse sings "I live in downtown, and it's killing me." Sweet Disaster is a tribute to a bad-news lover. In You Get Older, there's panic, confusion and bruised knuckles.

Amid all the mystery, irony, hurt feelings and worse, these are still love songs, just for a complicated and real world. There is room for some fun though, and the album ends on upbeat numbers. Oh Dolores might feature "the queen of pain," but she sure can rock. Closing track The Walls Have Drunken Ears is a rockabilly number that goes through a few quick phases with some Beatles musical references, kind of like a mini-Abbey Road. This is smart, sexy, superbly crafted and harmony-heavy, an album with so much to enjoy.

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