Tronics - Say! What Is This?

Tronics - Say! What Is This?


  • £20.99

A deeply obscure gem of the post-punk era, Tronics were a London band that served mostly as a vehicle for outsider Ziro Baby's strange, raw vision of rock & roll between 1979 and 1984. As enamoured with Bo Diddley as they were wtih the burgeoning, noisy experiments of the post-punk scene, Tronics released several singles and cassettes in their time, bounding between zany collages, dark acoustic punk love songs, and post-punk anthems like the long-coveted "Shark Fucks" single, a classic among the Messthetics scene.

Say! What's This? comes as a companion piece to the What's the Hubub, Bub? album, presenting material not from an unearthed cassette of the past, but a selection of mostly unreleased tracks recorded between 1979 and 1983, including live tracks, demos, and other rarities.

Ziro was an unabashedly art-damaged teenager for much of the time Tronics was a band, and the tone of the proper albums reflects a lot of the openness to mistakes and ugly feelings the disaffected youth was probably going through. Say! What's This? comes on a little differently, with more easily defined power pop and punk tunes like "Do You Hear Me" and "Spontaneous Combustion," which, while recorded with the same grainy lo-fi means, drop the insular bedroom sound of Ziro's solo recordings for a full-band feel. Some of the few demos from the sessions that resulted in Love Backed by Force retain their incredibly strange one-man-band feel, such as the truly bizarre blues-roots-punk of "Squiddley Diddley," and the budget Ramones sweetness of "Spending Time." A live recording of the tender, organ-led ballad "They're Talking About Us" finds some of the same warped romanticism of Suicide at their most tender. There's still a bit of the mysterious movie dialogue tape collages and experimentalism of other releases, but by and large, Say! What's This? is a pleasant grab bag of Tronics' more band-centric material. Fred Thomas, AllMusic


  1. Punky People
  2. Do You Hear Me
  3. Squiddly Diddly (LBBF Demo)
  4. Wild Cat Rock (Live 1983)
  5. Find Somewhere To Live
  6. Tonight
  7. They're Talking About Us (Live 1982)
  8. Spending Time (LBBF Demo)
  9. Time Off
  10. Punk Noise
  11. Luna Love
  12. Spontaneous Combustion
  13. Gotta Make It OK
  14. Goodbye

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