United/Zyklon B Zombie

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"United/Zyklon B Zombie"
Single by Throbbing Gristle
A-side "United"
B-side "Zyklon B Zombie"
Released May 1978
Recorded 1977
Genre Industrial, post-punk[1]
Label Industrial
Producer(s) Throbbing Gristle
Throbbing Gristle singles chronology
"United"/"Zyklon B Zombie"
(1978)
"We Hate You (Little Girls)"/"Five Knuckle Shuffle"
(1979)
Additional covers
Back cover
Camouflage packaging bag

"United/Zyklon B Zombie" is the debut single by industrial band Throbbing Gristle. It was released in 7" vinyl format in May 1978, through the band's own Industrial Records.

Background[edit]

The single's A-side, "United", was called "one of the first electropop singles" by Jon Savage.,[2] while the B-side, "Zyklon B Zombie", has been seen as a parody of punk rock music.[3] "United" featured a minimal drum loop and synthesizer pattern with uncharacteristically positive lyrics, while "Zyklon B Zombie" featured little more than growling, distorted vocals and bass guitar with a frenetic guitar solo. Both tracks were later released on the CD version of The Second Annual Report.

Release[edit]

The original pressing by Industrial Records had cream centre labels with very blurred Death Factory Logo and picture sleeve. After approximately 20,000 sales, re-pressing was taken over by Rough Trade and the single was re-cut with messages scratched in the centre: 'Salon Kitty' on the "Zyklon B Zombie" side and '437 666 OTO' 'RE-CUT 4 NOV 79' and '20,000 DOWN' scratched on the "United" side. The centre section of "Zyklon B Zombie" with Cosey Fanni Tutti's guitar was cut extra loud also as an improvement upon the original version. This version still had the cream/white labels with blurred Death Factory logo. Some were sold without picture sleeves, though not many.

A third pressing was in white vinyl (1,000 copies) and clear vinyl (1,000 copies) and features around two minutes of rain and train sounds at the end of side two.

"United" made an appearance in Throbbing Gristle's second studio album D.o.A: The Third and Final Report of Throbbing Gristle as a 16-second sped-up version.

Track listing[edit]

Side U
No. Title Length
1. "United"   4:03
Side Z
No. Title Length
1. "Zyklon B Zombie"   3:43

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gimarc, George (1994). Punk Diary: 1970-1979. Vintage. p. 124. ISBN 009952211X. 
  2. ^ Savage, Jon (1991). England's Dreaming. Faber & Faber. ISBN 0571261191. 
  3. ^ Reynolds, Simon (2005). Rip It Up and Start Again: Postpunk 1978–1984. Faber & Faber. ISBN 0571215696. 

External links[edit]