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Garolou Garolou album cover
3.61 | 20 ratings | 3 reviews | 10% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1978

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Aux Illinois (3:42)
2. La complainte du maréchal Biron (5:24)
3. Le départ pour les États (5:32)
5. Je me suis habillé en plumes (3:46)
5. Alouette (2:06)
6. Victoria (2:55)
7. La retraite de Bonaparte (2:44)
8. Wing-tra-la (4:27)
9. Germaine (10:30)

Total Time 41:06

Line-up / Musicians

- Michel Lalonde / guitar, vocals
- Marc Lalonde / vocals, bass
- Reginald Guay / backing vocals, keyboards
- Gilles Beaudoin / backing vocals, lead guitar
- Michel Stan Deguire / drums & percussion

Releases information

LP London LFS-9027
LP Kebec-Disc KD-511

Thanks to ? for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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GAROLOU Garolou ratings distribution

(20 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(60%)
Good, but non-essential (15%)
Collectors/fans only (15%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

GAROLOU Garolou reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kenethlevine
4 stars The late 1970s represented a singular moment in French Canada, particularly the province of Quebec. A government had been elected whose primary purpose was to achieve independent nation status for the province, and a population long suppressed by both the Catholic Church and the English business elite was feeling its oats. The half decade period leading up to and subsequent to the 1976 election victory was also a windfall for the arts. Since we are discussing music here, it was also the golden era for Quebecois popular music, particularly that which unearthed its rich roots and only fortified them in the process. I consider GAROLOU to have been in the forefront of this stampede, even if their two founders were from Ontario, and I'm certainly not alone, for their enthusiastic if unlikely blend of traditional folk music and symphonic progressive rock went gold for this, their second self-titled album (although each had a different name).

The album kicks off with the moody and potent "Aux Illinois", with its theme of lust and deceit. The quiet first verse is accompanied by simple electric piano with a slight jazzy feel, but raucous rhythm guitars quickly join in and turns this into perhaps the heaviest cut on the disc, and one of its best. This juxtaposition of Celtic and rock and roll styles is handled with panache. The most popular track on FM radio was "La complainte du marechal Biron", and its suspenseful tale of the king's right hand man who came to Paris to "play with the queen" continues the theme of lovers and friends turning against each other. Musically this is also a gem, with fine acoustic guitar throughout and string synths, which seemed to be Garolou's keyboard of choice, but not overdone. The band switches to the more blatantly historical for "Le Depart pour les etats", a touching tale of Canadian working families seeking employment and prosperity in the USA during the early Industrial Revolution only to be taken down a notch and become third class citizens. It features a superb lead guitar solo in the break.

Many other highlights include a breakneck version of "Alouette" which bears little resemblance to the cutesy rhyme that all Quebeckers know, Francophone and Anglophone alike, "Wing Tra La", a beautiful a capella number, and of course the overtly progressive 10 minute excursion that is "Germaine", with every device and excess of late 1970s progressive rock in one endearing package, and where the string cheese, I mean synthesizers, come closest to melting all over our heroic lovers. Still, it's an ambitious and highly realized work thanks to the band's melodic instincts and the Lalonde brothers' theatrical background.

I cannot possibly be objective about this indulgence that encapsulates my teenage love affair with home grown, old fashioned, and yet thoroughly contemporary rock, but I wouldn't throw you to the werewolves. This is a priceless snapshot of a time and place that are both gone forever.

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars 3.5 stars really!!!

With the name change Lougarou to Garolou, the group also changed of personnel as Antoniak and Naylor got replaced by more French-sounding Guay and Beaudouin. With a very Republican artwork, something tells me that Garolou now that it was adopted as a Quebecois band, they tried for the French market, and let's face it this album was good enough to crack the market if it had its chance. Musically the album takes over from the progressive folk rock that mixed so well acoustic and electric folk of the debut album and develops it to a mainly progressive rock where folk influences still dominates.

Opening on the electric piano introduction of Aux Illinois, Garolou almost sounds like Focus with added vocals until the Tull-guitar enters and gives it a vigorous shake. Complainte is one of those pure prog rock tracks, where the heavy synth layers give the track a very modern flavour, although the texts are about the French revolution. The following Depart returns to trad folk, depicting southbound immigration from the great whit north. This track featu-ures some violin from another Lalonde, Robert, this time. Interesting but predictable. Habillé En Plumes (dressed in feathers) is really in the realm of Tull's Songs From The Wood, except that it lets its middle section to keyboards, before letting the guitars a short escape, before returning to the verse and chorus. Then comes the ultra-standard Alouette to close up.

The flipside is a bit of a surprise at first, returning with the ultra-cliché Victoria, so unarranged that it ruins the album's cohesiveness, but since the following Bonaparte jig, where the Quebecois settle their count for abandoning them (by selling Louisiana to the Americans for his European campaigns)??Wing-Tra-La is more trad folk, this time close to Malicorne or la Bamboche. But clearly the album was waiting for the closing Germaine and its 10-mins, which starts as a merry song slowly building up to a furious Tull track in its middle section. The track resumes la bit then seems to die, before a series of dramatic bursts bring on a repetitive bur crescedoing synth finale

This second album is probably the one progheads will prefer, and it's easy to see why, despite the middle of the album's folk's folk heart. While I don't consider any of Garolou's album essential, the first three all have arguments and picking this album up, you shouldn't have any trouble enjoying an album like this..

Latest members reviews

4 stars This is Garolou's best album, and the one that best describes (and thus would be the best introduction to) their sound. Some of the members are new since the debut, and they changed their name (from Lougarou to Garolou), and in doing so became more firmly re-oriented in the Quebec progressive roc ... (read more)

Report this review (#1694736) | Posted by Walkscore | Monday, February 20, 2017 | Review Permanlink

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