Pumpkin Head Xscapes



Laughing now? You're happy now?
As the senile morons who run KLF flats
KLF flats in their brains (2)

Pumpkin head escapes
Pumpkin head escapes

We're coming, we're coming, Leo
We're coming, we're coming, Leo (3)
But you will not appreciate anything on your life
Until your life veers straight to the cross
Full autobiograph self-pity crap

Searching now, you're happy now 

We're coming, we're coming, Leo

They shall be filled with grit, curry and karaoke (4)

We are do-nowts
We are do-nowts
Happy now?
You're happy now

Pumpkin head escapes
Pumpkin head escapes

We're coming, we're coming, Leo
We're coming, we're coming, Leo

Smell, clogged up the drains
We are not adults
We are crusty mystics

Laughing now
You're happy now
Laughing now
You're happy now

We're coming, we're coming, Leo

Dear Gormless, go about your business (5)
A nightmarish scheme of horrendous proportions

I, as the producer, think the dark crystal moon looked blue-faced into my snatch (6)


1. From Dan:  "According to Simon Wolstencroft in You Can Drum But You Can't Hide, this song 'started out as a joke about Craig's cat going missing.'"


2. The KLF were a British acid house band; more information about them is available here . "Flats" may not be correct; the Lyrics Parade offers "blasts" as an alternative, but that's definitely wrong. I'm not sure who the "senile morons" would be; if they are the duo behind the KLF, Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty, these two are only slightly older than MES (Drummond, the older of the two, was 39 when this song was released), although it could have been an early onset kind of situation, I suppose. If we had a better idea what the "flats" word really is, there might be a further clue.

Dan: "There a series of Kowasaki quad bikes - 'KLF 300' etc. 'Flats' might refer to tyres?


3. In Billy Wilder's classic 1951 film Ace in the Hole, a man named Leo Minosa (Richard Benedict) is trapped in a cave near his home while hunting Indian artifacts. Chuck Tatum (Kirk Douglas) is an unscrupulous reporter who manages to prolong Leo's stay in the cave in order to milk the story for all its worth. The story proves so compelling that people flock from all over the country, camping near the cave and, incidentally, ensuring that Leo and his wife Lorraine's cafe and general store does a land office business; Tatum takes up with Lorraine, who assists him in his machinations. At one point in the movie, at the gathering carnival outside the cave-in, a country and western band strikes up a song of support for Leo:

We're coming, we're coming, Leo?
Oh, Leo, don't despair
While? you are in the cave-in hopin'?
We are up above you gropin'?
And we soon will make an openin', Leo 

We're closer, we're closer, Leo?
And soon you'll breathe fresh air?
While you are in the devil's prison?
Keep the spark of life a fizzin'?
We'll soon have you out of prison, Leo. 

Of Leo, Leo, Leo
Be steadfast and keep your spirits high

We’re coming, we’re coming, Leo
We’ve come to set you free
When we can look you in the eye
And you are free to meet the sky
Then, Leo, we’ll be happy again


4. Pronounced "karoke" here; compare "Paranoia Man in Cheap Sh*t Room," where we get "karaoka."


5. In general I'm resistant to the idea of using my notes as dictionary entries, especially since someone who is already online has instant access to any number of dictionaries. However, since "Gormless" is capitalized here and used as a name, someone unfamiliar with the word may miss the fact that it's an adjective meaning witless or stupid.


6. The Ed's Babe single lists Craig Leon, Simon Rogers and Mark E. Smith as producers; this line is apparently spoken by Rogers, since it isn't MES and Leon is an American, whereas whoever says the line has a British accent.


Comments (16)

  • 1. dannyno | 26/08/2013
Has MES ever watched this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pumpkinhead_(film)?

  • 2. dannyno | 01/12/2014
According to Simon Wolstoncroft in "You Can Drum But You Can't Hide", this song "started out as a joke about Craig's cat going missing."

  • 3. dannyno | 01/12/2014
Wolstoncroft/Wolstencroft, obviously.
  • 4. dannyno | 11/12/2017
The URL for this page misspells "pumpkin": http://annotatedfall.doomby.com/pages/the-annotated-lyrics/pumkin-head-xscapes.html
  • 5. bzfgt (link) | 16/12/2017
Dan, I do not know how to do anything about that, but I can't imagine anyone would try to navigate here by typing the URL in, can you? I think what might happen is I mis-type it when I first title it and then change it, and the computer thinks "good enough, we already have a perfectly good URL" or something of that nature. The computer does not care about you or I, or how we get here...
  • 6. dannyno | 16/12/2017
Well, it makes me unhappy.
  • 7. bzfgt (link) | 23/12/2017
Of course it does, I fully understand. As I say, they are not concerned with our happiness.
  • 8. Bert | 19/04/2018
I hear “KLF lads” rather than “KLF flats”.
  • 9. bzfgt (link) | 09/07/2018
Bert, it sounds rather distinctly like "flats" to me...
  • 10. dannyno | 17/07/2018
"Flats" to me too.
  • 11. dannyno | 18/07/2018
There a series of Kowasaki quad bikes - "KLF 300" etc.

Who knows? I can't make any sense of it.
  • 12. dannyno | 18/07/2018
"Flats" might refer to tyres?
  • 13. jensotto | 31/10/2019
KLF as JAMs sampled Totally Wired on their Next (1987, SAHB thing from Jacques Brel), and by 1988 you have Prestwich Prophets Grin "...Mark E Smith, it's your turn now .... yeah the channel's changed, and we're The Fall. The North has risen again". Later you have KLF under a banner spelling out NWRA.
No idea what the story is, but I assume Bill Drummond is fairly Wired, if not Totally.

Ice Cream Vans were a prop for JAMs/KLF - while The Fall has them in English Scheme (sound) + Hard Life in Country (lyrics)
  • 14. jensotto | 31/10/2019
The Manual has The FALL as Forever Ancients Liberation Loophole
  • 15. dannyno | 12/08/2021
"As the senile morons who run KLF flats
KLF flats in their brains"

If you watch the 1995 Crossing Border festival video by Aryan Kaganof/Ian Kerkhof, "A Leisure Society of Severe Preponderence", MES recites these lines at about 2:26.

It sounds there like

"As the senile morons who run KLF blats in their beds"

"Blat", according to the Oxford English Dictionary is defined as:

verb & noun. Chiefly US. m19.
[ORIGIN: Imit.]
A. verb. Infl. -tt-.
1. verb intrans. Bleat, make a sound like a bleat; make a loud harsh noise; talk garrulously or impulsively. m19.
2. verb trans. Blurt out; blast out. l19.
B. noun. A bleat or similar cry; a loud harsh noise. e20.

So if that is what the word is, the "senile morons" are moaning/whining/bleating in their beds, perhaps.

But then it's "brains" not "beds" at about 18:07.

  • 16. dannyno | 01/03/2022
According to Steve Hanley on the Hanley brothers' podcast Oh! Brother, recorded with Steve Pringle as the guest, Craig Scanlon's cat was called "pumpkin head" because of "a growth".

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