Happy Valentine’s Day from Petunia-Liebling MacPumpkin and all her uncanny friends

petunia-uncanny-valley

We’ve been remiss in keeping tabs on one of favorite weirdos, Floridian lo-fi pop siren Petunia-Liebling MacPumpkin, who for several years kept us entertained with a steady stream of surreal music videos from her one and only album, the funhouse masterpiece Fish Drive Edsels. Turns out that, in addition to making all those videos and running her label, Electric Phantom (home to fellow weirdos Chimney Crow), she’s been working on new music — which she finally released last month in the form of I Left My Heart in Uncanny Valley, another great collection of outsider pop ditties that’s worth the price of admission just for “Button Eyes,” a collaboration with David Liebe Hart sidekick (or alter ego? you decide) Chip the Black Boy. God, it makes us happy when weird worlds collide.

Now, just a month after unleashing Uncanny Valley upon unsuspecting listeners, P-L MacP is back with All My Friends Live in Uncanny Valley — a six-track EP of remixes of Uncanny Valley‘s best songs. And yay — there are more weird worlds colliding here! Among the remixers are Petunia’s longtime associates, Renaldo & the Loaf, as well as our old friend Toxic Chicken, the nom de weird of Kai Nobuko, who even wrote a guest post for us back in the day. Did Petunia and Kai find each other through this very blog? If so, I feel I could pack it all in today and declare victory.

All My Friends Live in Uncanny Valley also features remixes by several artists I’m not familiar with, including Kevin Busby, Vertigen, Commander Zillack and Spectral Fern Plaza. But they’re all pretty great, too — especially Busby’s “Cars and Monorails” remix of “Bright Light City,” which sounds like Gary Numan on acid, jumping in neon-lit puddles to watch the colors streak every which way. Here, you’ll see what I mean:

Both I Left My Heart in Uncanny Valley and today’s just-released remix collection (Petunia’s Valentine’s Day gift to us all — thanks, Petunia!) are available on Bandcamp. Buy ’em both, knowing that a good chunk of your Uncanny Valley dollars will likely be plowed right back into MacPumpkin’s next trippy music video. It’s money well spent.

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Mr. Vast’s experimental jazz-pop group Kröter is even weirder than his solo stuff

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Remember Mr. Vast, our favorite fat-suit-wearing, avant-glam-pop Englishman living in Germany? Turns out he’s been keeping busy since we added him to the Weird List way back in 2014 (my, how the time does fly). In addition to releasing his second album, Touch and Go — which is already getting a reissue, on picture disc, next month — he went and formed a whole new weird band on us. They’re called Kröter, which is German for Toad, and he describes them as “tadpoles wiggling in Jazz Pop ponds, then sprouting back legs [as] they begin to jump around in Techno and krautrock.” They released their debut album(s) just last month and they’re gloriously bizarre, stream-of-consciousness jams that pull from all those sources, plus maybe a little Mark E. Smith, Psychic TV and Suicide. Here’s a taste:

Besides Mr. Vast (aka Henry Sargeant), Kröter features Jo Zahn on guitar and bass and Christoph Rothmeier on drums, synths, production and pretty much everything else, along with a rotating group of guest collaborators. Here they are live in Berlin earlier this year:

Kröter’s three albums are called ( kröter ) *a, ( kröter ) *b, and ( kröter ) *c and are all available now via Bandcamp.

In other Mr. Vast news, he also recently created his first theater show, The Peter Pan Syndrome, and made a couple of videos for Touch and Go. We’ll leave you with the more whimsical of the two, for the album’s closing track, a Bowie-esque psychedelic ballad called “Bottlenose”: