'Theatre Of Cruelty' is a tribute to the French poet, novelist, actor and playwright Antonin Artaud (1896-1948), a critic of conformity and an enemy of convention, he was a true "punk" before his time. Artaud was once a member of the Surrealists, before being definitively excluded by André Breton for political reasons. The Marseille-born Antonin Artaud, trapped by his own madness, left behind an incandescent literary oeuvre of unparalleled verbal and symbolic power.
He redefined the true role of the Theatre (of Cruelty), infused vibrant emotions, visionary philosophical reflection, indomitable verve and savage discourse into each of his texts. His taste for laudanum, cocaine and heroin did not help his psychiatric disorders, but the lucidity with which he described his mental illness and tried to contain his visible delusions through art therapy allowed him to experiment in the madhouse, leading to an atheistic form of Ecstatic Passion. His experience of shamanism among the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico in 1936 (under the influence of peyote) and the multiple electric shocks to which he was subjected throughout his life did not succeed in attenuating the force of his writing, nor the subversive content of his discourses. His ethical and aesthetic stances have made him one of the greatest iconoclasts of the 20th century. Never has a writer documented and witnessed so well the situation of a person suffering from deep depression, depersonalisation and behavioural disorders.
Rereading his complete works during the pandemic, Pedro decided to revive his HIV+ power-noise project and compose a new uncompromising album to pay homage to this immense provocative genius (whom he had already sampled on his first album 20 years ago!). Most of his instrumentals were recorded while in seclusion and only with old Korg synthesizers, industrial sequences and shredded tapes.
A number of artists have collaborated on this album who have meant a lot to Pedro in his last years, and who have also adored the character of Antonin Artaud, such as Marc Hurtado, member of the cult band Etant Donnés, Marc Caro, director of films such as Delicatessen or The City of Lost Children (participating also at Alien: Resurrection), guitarist Alice Botté, Phil Von (member of Von Magnet), Emmanuel Hubaut (from Tétines Noires) & Barkosina (from Years Of Denial).