Linked by a strong friendship, the five members of the French (European) band Les Mécanos – not to be confused with the Quebec music show about two crazy inventors – have been surveying their French and Occitan oral heritage since 2017 and share a common desire to reclaim regional song repertoires from each musician’s musical universe.


On stage, songs of work and aggrieved love as well as political and religious satires, and songs for dancing and drinking, are all intertwined:  rearranged for ten voices and supported by the rumbling cadences of their bass drum, tom-tom, and other percussive tools. The musicians’ ten pairs of hands manipulate wrenches, exhaust pipe silencers and assorted scrap metal and stretched skins to create polyphonic performances that are contemporary, sincere and carefree.


In keeping with its creative musical endeavours, Les Mécanos believe that it’s essential to be involved in cultural mediation and outreach projects. Indeed, their very entry into traditional music stems from a fascination with oral and intergenerational transmission. Also, they are dedicated to sharing their knowledge and love of polyphonic traditions with the diverse audiences found at rock festivals, museums, small municipal halls, churches, nursing homes, schools and prisons. After watching Los Mécanos perform live at TD Sunfest ’23, you can check out their new EP, and some intriguing video clips.  And do you need a good auto mechanic to grease your engine? Here’s ten!