...Clearly, this trio has thrown the first rule right out the door.

The Tsunamibots are three robots from the future that play surf rock. Their debut release, Rise of the Robots, finds the band already cultivating a full fledged character which both celebrates and snarls at their human slaves.

The problem with a lot of surf rock is that it’s too clean. Bands play it too close to the legendary Ventures, so that modern surf rock often comes off as bland imitation. The Tsunamibots, perhaps because they have soulless hearts made of steel, apparent calculate for this factor and, instead of focusing on clean, sparkling guitar lines, play it as bombastic and dirty as they can. As these droids tear through four songs, there are slight glimpses of modern garage-punkers the Spits and and hard stomping of early West Coast punk.

Also to their credit, the band keeps their instrumentals varied. Instead of establishing a theme and riding the wave, the band surfs to the top of a riff, goes for two or three circulations, and then immediately starts tearing the song apart. Check out the avant-garde spacey-guitar bashing on the second half of “Sort Circuit.” There is some raw violence in these licks, and counter intuitively, despite the band being emotionless, the entire time they seem to be just burning with an anger- an anger at what? Their Godless existence? The follies of the soft human race?

I must admit, that as wild and as savage as these tunes are, I think they might benefit from a little more vocals. These robotrons have such fury and cold malice in their playing I am dying to hear what is going on in that positronic brain. Clearly, this trio has thrown the first rule right out the door.

John Gentile