Ethereal folk. Space Cowboy twang. Psychedelic spaghetti western. Intergalactic blues grooves. Pop noir. Since their debut in 2011, Whitehorse has evolved from magnetic folk duo to full-blown rock band. In truth, Whitehorse is never fully either one or the other, but an ever-evolving creative partnership that challenges both artists to explore new instrumental and lyrical terrain with each project. Together, Luke Doucet and Melissa McClelland’s searing Americana noir sensibility is distinguished by guitar wizardry (and instantly recognizable tone) and magnetic harmonies.
Now, the JUNO Award winning duo Whitehorse return to the early days of electric blues with The Northern South Vol. 2, the second instalment of a project that melds the grooves and melodies of the original selections with the band’s steamy, swampy, squalling approach. The Northern South Vol. 2, coming January 2019 on Six Shooter Records, deals 1950s blues bops, hellfire gospels and sexed-up cuts from Howlin’ Wolf, Willie Dixon, Jimmy Reed and more. The first single, “Who’s Been Talkin’” channels the cross-continent blues super sessions with spiny Wurlitzer, serpentine White Falcon, and, above all, a deep reverence for Howlin’ Wolf and his longtime guitar player Hubert Sumlin.
2018 has proven to be the break-out year so long deserved by Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar. In November 2018, it was announced that “Run To Me” has been nominated for 4 Maple Blues Awards at the 2019 edition (Album of The Year, Songwriter of The Year, Entertainer of The Year, and Female Vocalist of The Year). The group’s latest recording, entitled Run to Me, was released in April 2018. Produced by Darcy Yates, the album is a massive step forward for both Martin and Delta Sugar. Over the course of the project’s ten tracks, everyone written by Martin solo or in tandem with Curtis Chaffey or Suzie Vinnick, the album explores the full range of the vicissitudes of love: desire, betrayal and, at times, emotional and sexual satisfaction. As a collective, the songs reflect remarkable growth on Martin’s part as a songwriter. The lyrics are incisive, the melodies are constantly arresting and the harmonies and arrangements call up the best of the soul and blues sounds of Stax Records and such contemporary artists as Leon Bridges, Sharon Jones and Lee Fields. The record is has received massive airplay in North America reaching #2 on Earshot, #1 on Roots Music Report, and #1 on Stingray’s Blues channel radio charts. The album has also crossed overseas and managed to sneak into the UK Blues Radio Top40 charts as well as receiving dozens of rave reviews. With over 500 shows under their belt in the last 4 years, Canadian Independent Music Association (CIMA) has honored Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar with the certification “Road Gold.” CIMA certifies Canadian artists as “Road Gold” when they have sold over 25 thousand tickets to Canadian fans over a twelve-month period.