Exposé Online banner

Petunia-Liebling MacPumpkin — I Left My Heart in Uncanny Valley
(Electric Phantom no#, 2018, CD / DL)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2018-04-15

I Left My Heart in Uncanny Valley Cover art

The Soft Bodies Bleed Out compilation was my first encounter with the enigmatic and intriguingly named Petunia-Liebling MacPumpkin. Just the artist’s name is more than enough to entice you to learn more. Now I have my chance with her latest release I Left My Heart in Uncanny Valley. This album is a collection of 19 twisted and bizarre songs with dissonant instrumentation and oddball melodies much like The Residents. Watching her videos is akin to viewing a quirkier vision of Pee Wee’s Playhouse. I am not sure what Uncanny Valley is, but the songs appear to be about its different denizens. The outlandish nature of the songs makes you wonder what is going on in her brain and how she is able to compose this music while at the same time remaining aloof from conventional songs. Petunia’s surreal compositions also exhibit influences from Der Plan, Pyrolator, Ptôse, Laurie Anderson, and possibly Primus (Les Claypool). Electronic percussion, rhythms, sound bites, processed vocals, and eccentric lyrics swirl and twist through your ears. The song from the Soft Bodies compilation “The Monosaccharide Inducer” also appears on I Left My Heart in Uncanny Valley and is not as eccentric as the rest of the songs. To give you an idea of the wacky lyrics, the song “Grandpa Susie,” which may be about a fish, has the couplet “Oh no, the scaly slime! I am running out of time.” And then there is a dialog between Susie and someone sounding like Laurie Anderson’s slowed down voice “Do you have a pogo stick? I’ll take that.” Some of the songs “tell” a story like “Bermuda Triangle” with its island beat interspersed with the sounds of a thunderstorm, surf, and airline pilot announcements as everything collapses. “City without Limits Theme Song” bears an especially strong resemblance to The Residents using a toy piano. And the final track is a nightmarish reworking of Al Jolson’s classic “Toot, Toot, Toosie! (Good-Bye)” similar to Morgan Fisher’s Hybrid Kids reworking of Christmas songs. So if you are in the mood for something completely different, check out this album.


Filed under: New releases, 2018 releases

Related artist(s): Petunia-Liebling MacPumpkin

Latest news

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more

2018-06-25
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more

2018-06-13
Jon Hiseman RIP – One of the great drummers of the rock era has died. Jon Hiseman was a veteran of such ground-breaking groups as Colosseum (I and II), Tempest, John Mayal's Bleusbreakers, and was a founding member of the innovative large band United Jazz + Rock Ensemble. » Read more

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Billy Currie - Push – Ex-Ultravox member Billy Currie’s fifth album is another tour de force of synthesizers and stringed instruments that captures a unique romantic niche. Currie has been refining his approach for over...  (2003) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues