New Zealand has housed a covertly excellent music scene since at least the ’70s, but the outre duo Doprah is a different kind of beast altogether. Featuring production like the glitchiest of Anticon’s new wave and vocals that outspooky the bulk of the 4AD catalog, Doprah is startling weird even before you get to their new video “Stranger People,” a riff on Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s cyber dadaist masterpiece “PonPonPon.” The thing about that “PonPonPon” video is that it mixes a lot of macabre imagery up in its day-glo wonderworld, forcing the contrast to happen subtly– the first time you see it, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s music is just background noise, a chirpy, blissful J-pop number that perfectly suits the elements of the visuals you immediately latch onto, namely the fashion and the toys and the colors. The next time you watch it– because how can you not watch it again?– the floating brains and laughing skulls are all you can focus on. Eventually you work your way up to the faceless, terrifying back-up dancers. Then you’re never the same again.
Nick Hanover got his degree from Disneyland, but he’s the last of the secret agents and he’s your man. Which is to say you can find his particular style of espionage here at Loser City as well as Ovrld, where he contributes music reviews and writes a column on undiscovered Austin bands. You can also flip through his archives at Comics Bulletin, which he is formerly the Co-Managing Editor of, and Spectrum Culture, where he contributed literally hundreds of pieces for a few years. Or if you feel particularly adventurous, you can always witness his odd .gif battles with Dylan Garsee on twitter: @Nick_Hanover