Music is a fabulous field: we just needed the 50s to fuck it up a bit. Cage, Reich, La Monte Young and Riley, the four horsemen of abstraction crusaded through musicality to such extreme that John Cage epinonimous track 4’33’’,will send us back to the origin of sound: Silence.
Ultimately something had to be built upon and it is but 60 years later, through the sieve of minimalism that  Romain Perrot aka RORO PERROT a smart 40 years old French one-man-band, would add another folder to the sub-genre of Noise. “Ultra-shit folk” is a live acoustic regression with a badly tuned guitar, (sometimes) a drum box on a very slow tempo and a few analog distortions. It’s brutal, primitive, in fact it’s fucking insane (but God it’s Good!) and it is Romain Perrot’s third project as he releases his last opus “Ta Bouche De Fraise Me Rends si Sauvage” (Your strawberry mouth makes me so wild – ed.) Below is the first video he posted on Youtube and I caught up with
“Folk,” he starts, “because it’s acoustic and shit because it’s true, it’s shit; it’s naive and like ‘refusal’. It’s Folk song without any knowledge or practice.”
Romain Perrot is a Noise Fetish that lives in Montpellier with his wife and kids. From 2001, Perrot will thrive in the field of Harsh Noise, an organic mixture of feedbacks and industrial grumblings. At the time of start Perrot, aka’ed ROMPRAI ETRON, was doing his first experiments with guitar and voice. The score had given birth to something he called Vomit Harsh Blast or Vomitocore, with titles like “ECOUTE LA MERDE” (listen to shit) or “FILLETTE ANALE CANNIBALE” (Cannibal anal teen).
DSCN3323“Until 2006 I used to play a lot of guitar free noise in solo and in bands. Then under the name VOMIR, I started doing this kind of static, monolithic noise for a genre called Harsh Wall Noise: instead of having a calm and appeasing drone, I had created some kind of brutal white noise.”
At the time, The Rita (Militant Walls label) was branding the three letters HNW (Harsh Noise Wall) in the screaming face of music, Perrot contacts US label Troniks – also house to the great great Phil Blankenship (The Cherry Point) – and sympathise with the lot. “I sent my CDs over and they released them. That’s how I kind of grew an audience.”
But Romain Perrot is a minimalist a la Derek Bailey. “Bailey used to say the most important is to deconstruct and forget references’”.
And so did he.DSCN3321
RORO PERROT’s first recordings started in Lozere, in the French country side (as far away from civilization as poss, ed) and it was bliss, he tells me. “No artifice; I love the sound of an acoustic guitar it produces, the fact that you can pluck the strings; I love a guitar’s creative process and I love expressing myself. I have never learnt how to play and never will. I have reached such a level of nullity, such nonsense, that it becomes easier for me to assume its crudeness and brutality.”
“No idea, no changes, no dynamics; I am not a musician, I have no formation, and I don’t know how to play an instrument; I even refuse to learn even the basics.”
Knee deep in the Seattle grunge scene of 1991, Sonic Youth will play a major influence in Perrot’s work as well as Swans and Glenn Branca. Then following an experimental spanking through the rage of musician Keiji Haino (Fushitsusha) carnal singing, RORO PERROT will become a guitar player. “What I always loved in Music are the outsiders and deviant, displaced standard. “As soon as you start searching, you just can’t stop getting access to things. I also listened to. “I have very diverse musical references but what I like is difficult music: I buy music but only originals, no Mp3.”
Having contributed to the improvised Noise music scene for the last 30 years in Paris, Perrot has worked at Aligre FM, to the mad indie  fanzine and record store “La boutique Bimbo Tower” as well as “L’oeuil du silence” and “Les Instants Chavires” respectively theatre company and a laboratory dedicated to experimental and noise music.
Perrot is thus a melomaniac: someone you’d turned to if you were thinking that you’d listened to everything. Noise, Improvised, Experimental, Rock, Hardcore, he collects them all as far as hand drawn Japanese noise sleeves or the early 80s recordings of the Incapacitants.
“Noise is silence to me,” he once said. Between two jokes, amongst the other electrics in the house, an analog distortion pedal and a white noise generator are also always plugged in making Noise something you cannot escape from. A flip of the switch and Harsh Noise Wall drills through silence a bit like putting your head out of the window on the motorway at 150 mph.
“My work cannot be classified, it is simply important for me, it is a vital part of my every day, my equilibrium.”
Often relating to the writing of Psychotic Reactions by Lester Bang who described Punk as a music where “nobody could play instruments”, this is what Perrot likes: It’s therapeutic to him. He doesn’t care about melody or chords. He doesn’t want to make a melody; he doesn’t know any chords; he wants to push things further, to the complete abstraction of noise; like a musical regression. “Have we gone too far?” I finally ask him. No answer. “What do you think of artist like Lady Gaga and Nicky Minaj?” “Oh, the meat-dress has been at the Beaubourg Museum in Paris, since 1987… But I don’t know the other one.” Romain Perrot. Thanks.

2 thoughts on “To the far end of noise.

  1. Pingback: Newsletter (?)My dear cosmopolitan chums. | La feuille de Cabbage

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