Whitehorse review: Pop that does preach, with a 1970s swing

Wed, Jul 26, 2017, 15:06


Panther in the Dollhouse


Six Shooter Records


Tax evasion and the Cayman Islands aren’t usual subjects for a pop song, but Canadian husband-and-wife duo Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland, aka Whitehorse, have found a way to sneak them on to their fourth album, Panther in the Dollhouse.

Exploring morality, capitalism and sexism, this is pop at its preachiest but with a subtle 1970s soft-rock leaning. “I can hear the sniffles behind the door, is it cocaine or heartbreak? You never can be sure,” Doucet drones on Gracie, showing that if they’re not packing a punch, like on Boys Like You or Trophy Wife, they can be a bit of a drag.

When they switch off the pontification for a quick second on Pink Kimono and Nighthawks, their message becomes decluttered and the music immediately becomes easier to digest.