Interview With Experimental/Noise Artist PETROLIO

a3819513635_2Petrolio is a mysterious act in the experimental/noise scenes based out of Rhode Island, USA.  Petrolio was founded by Enrio Cerrato, an active artist in the metal sector with InfectionCode, in the industrial scene with Gabbianferno and in the “jazznoisepunk” field with DiCosaSiNasce.  The latest Petrolio release is L+ES available on digital and ltd. edition vinyl formats.  We’re grateful to Petrolio for the interview.


Could you start by giving us a big of a background/biography of Petrolio?

Petrolio started like a joke. I was playing the bass in some bands and during this period i began to experiment with electronics. I bought some noise machines and synths; it was time to start Petrolio’s dark noise adventure.

My first release “Di Cosa Si Nasce” born in april 2017. This album was co-produced by some great independent labels and it obtained an unexpected success in Italy and abroad.

After my first gig in December 2016, I played in various live events and in spring 2018 I took part at the ElektroAnschlang Fest, an electronic music festival in Altenburg (D).

In 2018 Petrolio came back with a new album “L+Esistenze”, a great experience born as a collaboration with important artist coming from different kind of music; work with Petrolio Jochen Arbeit (Einstürzende Neubauten , Automat , AADK , Soundscapes), Fabrizio Modonese Palumbo (( r ), Almagest!, Blind Cave Salamander, Coypu, Larsen, XXL), Aidan Baker (Nadja), Sigillum S, MaiMaiMai e N Ran ().

The new release is “L+ES.”  There is an extremely diverse and interesting mesh of sounds on here.  What artists do you feel serve as your primary influences?

Coming from different experiences in musical underground scene, i took with me a lot of influences. If i think about Petrolio, the first names I have in my mind are Nadja, Ulver, Godflesh, Sigur Ros, Mogwai, Ben Frost and Neurosis, but  I forget some names for sure. But the most important influences arrive from all the music i listen going around on stage, a lot of band and artists met during my gigs!!!

I’ve often argued that many of the reasons people are attracted to noise are based upon dynamics (i.e. abrasive vs. delicate, loud vs. quiet) and so on.  What could you add to this point?

Yes, I agree with your vision. Petrolio is my personal way to paint the black and white colors of life; and the noise music adds all the dynamics I need to create the inclusive atmospheres i like to build in my live shows. Personally i like a lot to work with distortions vs melodies; to saturate the background to create a disharmonic landscape.

The following passage appears on your bandcamp page.  Could you possibly elaborate? “It follows some masterpiece of melancholic noise and pure emotional electronic musics.It could be the perfect soundtrack for a moment of spleen…”

It’s a passage from a review I had some time ago. I agree with it, as my music has a personal emotional approach, going to dark atmospheres to a melodic noise attitude.

Is this album based upon a central concept or are the individual tracks created upon separate ideas?

There’s a central concept connecting all the songs together; as different artists collaborated with me in this album I connected all the songs together with the theme of “Existences”, meaning a sum of different artistic existences (s. Petrolio is the common link between the artistic visions of the artists involved in this sonic adventure, trying to mix all the tracks respecting the artistic idea of every guest but with Petrolio noise sounding.

Are you involved in any side-projects?

Yes, i play bass and electronic instruments in a experimental jazz band called Moksa, and now I’m working with Frank Valente, a value Italian drummer, to a new side project called “(h) O U R”, electronic noise drones improvisations.

Your last release was a tape/digial album called A soundtrack composed for Angela Teodorowsky.  Who is this and where do the samples come from?

I composed these four tracks for “Intramoenia”, an art performance made with Angela Teodorowsky, a great Italian contemporary theater artist, and i played them live during some shows we had in Italy. The Canadian label “Low Noise Prod.” gave life to a limited tape release of these songs, now i think finally sold out.

What are some non-traditional or non-conventional tools or equipment that you use to create your sounds?

I like to use some “analog” equipment between my digital tools; in my live shows I use a didgeridoo filtered with some pedals. And in my home studio I  have some instrument made by the great Massimo Olla, musician and builder of insane drone instruments, and a custom made noiser made by Exagonal. Sometimes i build myself custom made fuzz or distortion effects.

What plans do you have for the rest of 2019 and info 2020?

Now I’m working on different collaborations. I finished some tracks with Japanese artist Yuko Araki, that will be released into a split with Italian artist WearandTear; I released for Detroit Label “Brain Ticket Death” three new songs and now i’m working for two other album collaborations with Instinct Primal and Snare Drum Exorcism. Then some gigs in Italy and abroad, some summer festival and hope a lot of good Petrolio releases for the future.

Situation:  “You’ve been commissioned to create a experimental/noise-based piece based on Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons” classical masterpiece.  What do you use/how do you create this using your equipment, field recordings etc?

Wow..I think to start creating some sample for the original piece and destroying them with a bitcrusher; then i’ll use some noisy sample, like airport crowd or similar, to give to the “Four Seasons” a contemporary taste. I’ll use my nice mate Studiologic Sledge synth to create some layers to take Vivaldi into Petrolio’s mood. Could be an interesting experiment!!!!!

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