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Lougarou - Lougarou

London - 1976

Michael Panontin
Franco-Ontarians Marc and Michel Lalonde formed the nucleus of Lougarou while working as part of a theatre troupe in Prince Edward Island in 1974. The brothers picked up guitarist George Antoniak, keyboardist Steven Naylor and drummer Michel DeGuire and eventually settled in the Laurentian region of Quebec to record this obscure prog-folk LP. After mining the archives of musicologists like Father Anselme Chiasson, Lougarou built up a solid repertoire of traditional French-Canadian music, updating it to the prog-folk idiom already popularized by the likes of Harmonium and Beau Dommage. Bouncy boite-burners like 'Un bon matin', 'Dis-moi Charles' and especially the snappy 'La vendee' , which showcases Robert Lalonde's scorching violin, surely must have made this a toasty alternative to shoveling snow in -30 degree wind chills.

The band would later go through several personnel changes as well as a name change to the phonemically similar Garolou. The various incarnations, with the Lalonde brothers always at the helm, recorded a few more trad releases in the years to come before issuing 1982's popular Centre-ville, their first collection of original material.

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