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The Quebec neo-trad ensemble preaches the folk-punk gospel

The title of this Montreal roots combo’s sixth release translates as High Mass—an apt advertisement for the album’s communal energy, political proselytising and transcendental ambitions. Despite the acoustic instrumentation, Les Cowboys Fringants are hardly tethered to folk tradition, investing the klezmer-inspired “8 secondes” and the countrified frenzy of “Symphonie pour Caza” with the foot-stomping fervour you’d find in a mosh pit. This is the sort of LP that’ll give you a hoarse voice from shouting along and a sore elbow from air-fiddlin’.

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