Mysterious Pony

It made people at [I]NME [/I]cry....

[a]Emperor Penguin[/a] are from Chicago. They are evil. They make music that sounds like a homebrew megamix of Cameo, Harold F Faltermeyer, Air, Amon D||l, Yes and Les Rythmes Digitales. The title track of this – their third LP in the last 12 months – is, quite literally, a song about a mysterious pony (sample lyric: “Pony, pony, you’re so mysterious you can’t get any more mystical than my pony”). After hearing it, you will want to kill them with a harpoon.

But why? [a]Emperor Penguin[/a] (self-styled “mixologist and audio wizard” DJ Lazlo Minimart and his friend Mel Stanke, “groove fanatic”) are out there, welding together every known strand of bad taste in the musical universe. All their songs feature excessively long, excessively loud guitar solos like you get on King Crimson records. Their keyboard sound is a prog-travesty of squelching easy-listening goo. And all their lyrics are about animals.

It’s great. It’s probably ironic. But who cares? There’s ‘Magic Beans’ and ‘Mood Mound’, two songs that make you feel like you’ve stuffed a bowl of potpourri up your nose. There’s a number about penguins called ‘Extreme Gaming’. It’s the final warped example of everything that’s wrong, and right, about this record. It made people at [I]NME [/I]cry.