French duo Inspector Cluzo, composed of Laurent Lacrouts and Mathieu Jourdain, live a double life by spending six months of the year on their organic farm tending to their crops and animals, and six months of the year on the road performing their music and greeting fans. They hail from the Gascony region and spend their time there also composing their Country-Folk-Electric fusion music and gearing up for very energetic shows.
Lately, they've been releasing singles of unplugged live performances ahead of their new upcoming EP of live performances, The Organic Farmers Seasons which will be released in October. So far we've had a cover of the Neil Young song "Hey Hey My My" and "Ideologies", with one song for every season of the year.
Tower's PULSE is very honored to debut their next track and video from the EP, "Brothers in Ideals" today right on our site, which we be available on September 4th. The song was recorded somewhere very special to the band, Théâtre de Gascogne, Mont de Marsan.
Laurent Lacrouts and Mathieu Jourdain kindly agreed to drop in for a little Q&A about this song and their farming/musical life:
Hannah Means-Shannon: Can you tell us about the history of the Théâtre de Gascogne and your own history with the place that made filming there special for you?
Inspector Cluzo: Théâtre de Gascogne is a new venue built in Mont de Marsan, where we were born and where we grew up. Close to the school we went to (50 meters), close to the retirement house where Laurent's grandpa passed away (50 meters too). This venue is built on a field where we played soccer and rugby. Lots of memories there. Indeed, it was really special for us, especially playing this song "Brothers In Ideals" that talks about our common path together...for 25 years now.
Grandpa Maurice Lacrouts welcomed us in his house to rehearse, work, develop the label, and he supported our career in his own way. Though we guess he did not understand what we did, we were too noisy:), but he did support us. He was a typical Gascon Farmer, open to everything, not talking too much, just working, never complaining, wearing his Gascon bérêt all the time on his head. We wrote several songs about him.
HMS: Do you see yourself and your lives in the context of your ancestors or past musicians? What do you think their response would be to your life and work?
Inspector Cluzo: We hope so and we're trying our best...that is our goal..t.o be respectful to these old Gascon values, really linked to the soil and the solidarity of farming. We’re sure they would say "It's not enough, try harder!" Hahahah...They were all really tough (women and men), in a good way. Gascony is a "terroir" really famous for developing lots of famous characters...like the Cadillac family that you know well :), or D'Artagnan and all the Musketeers that were all from Gascony, as well as lots of famous rugby players that were also farmers etc…There is a legacy about this culture that is sometimes hard to handle but sometimes a shelter for simple human values and things that help us find our way in this crazy world we're living in now.
HMS: Did you know when you performed this song in the Fall of 2020 that it would be recorded for a video? What made this a good time for you to release the video?
Inspector Cluzo: It was recorded 12 February 2020, just before Covid arrived...We knew we were recording, but did not know it would be released. We were just catching momentum that we knew would be unique...With three musician friends appearing including Eleonore Denig (violin), Melodie Chase(cello) & Eric Montgomery (piano & keyboards) who are Americans, from Nashville, TN. They are missing us terribly now. We have a lot of friends over there, like our music producer Vance Powell.
Two Gascon men and tree Tennessee boys and girls together on stage, sharing this song. We knew it would be a magical and unique moment. So we had to film and record it. That is how we see the world of the future, adding our cultural differences to make something unique, all together. Cultural differences will always be the richness of humanity…always. We rehearsed in our farm "Lou Casse", and they stayed upstairs in the attic!
Maurice Lacrouts could have met these Tennessee kids if he was still there at the farm...We are sure he did and was watching us...
HMS: What do you think fans will find to be familiar or find to be surprising about this new song in the context of your past work?
Inspector Cluzo: Fans know that we write our songs with acoustic guitars. They know we can play our music with acoustic instruments, as we did in the past on a few TV shows and radio shows, or for ARTE/Deezer in France. But they were really expecting to have a whole acoustic tour from us, so instead we did an acoustic record called "Brothers In Ideals" and now this "Unplugged Live".
Lots of people were crying at the end of shows...that was a new experience for us...our Rock shows are so volcanic, wild, and electric and so much noise, hahahah. It was, for Laurent the singer, something really new, in the sense that he could sing and touch people really deeply.
HMS: How would you describe your musical and artistic goals in this song or at this point in time?
Inspector Cluzo: The song sums up our community that we have been living in for 25 years now, as professional organic farmers with our farm Lou Casse (We handle 22 acres all by hand, there are few machines...being self-sufficient for our families is hard work...but we have now been feeding ourselves for many years). “Acting local, thinking global” has been our goal for 10 years now. We also plant organic wheat, vegetables etc...and sell them at the local market in Mont de Marsan, every Saturday (When we're on tour we have volunteers who replace us on the farm).
Music-wise, we're also completely independent. We have our own label, booking agency, and management. Its lots of work…but we do want to keep on this path...as we think it is more appropriate for the future world to be self-financed. You do what you can with what you have, locally, playing with heart & soul, that's all.
We're writing new songs for our new LP, and we have a bunch already. We have lots of things to say. The new album should be recorded in Nashville next year with our friend Vance Powell. Our last LP, We The People of The Soil, was well-received everywhere. We played Lollapalooza in Chile and Brazil and visited your beautiful country with our friends Clutch and Eels.
Adishats! (au revoir in the Gascon language)