Neil Stephen Cicierega (/ˌsɪsɪˈriːɡə/ SISS-i-REE-gə; born August 23, 1986) is an American Internet artist, comedian, actor, filmmaker, singer, musician, puppeteer, and animator. He is the creator of the genre of Flash animation known as "Animutation", has released several albums as a musician under the name Lemon Demon and has more recently released a series of mashup albums under his own name.
Cicierega was born in Boston, Massachusetts. Cicierega's father was a programmer, so Cicierega was surrounded by computers growing up. At a young age, Cicierega began using a program named Klik & Play, a simplistic game developing program. By the fourth grade, Cicierega's parents began homeschooling him along with his brother and sister. Cicierega continued making amateur games and even began creating digital music to feature in his games. Soon, Cicierega began sharing his music on the Internet through the music sharing website MP3.com under the name Trapezoid.
Cicierega was first known for a series of dadaist or surrealist Flash animations he termed "Animutation". Animutations feature arbitrary, nonsensical scenes and pop culture imagery and are typically set to novelty or foreign music, often from the Japanese version of Pokémon. One of his earliest works entitled Hyakugojyuuichi was published on the web, and was described as a "hit" in 2001 by Salon magazine.
Potter Puppet Pals
Cicierega's Potter Puppet Pals is a comedy series which parodies Harry Potter. It originated as a pair of Flash animations on Newgrounds in 2003, and later resurfaced in the form of a series of live action puppet shows released onto YouTube and PotterPuppetPals.com, starting in 2006. The central characters of the Harry Potter series are portrayed simply by puppets. The most successful Potter Puppet Pals video, The Mysterious Ticking Noise, currently has over 188 million views (as of September 2019). Cicierega has done puppetry live at Harry Potter-themed events.
Since 2003, Cicierega has released 9 full-length albums under his musical project Lemon Demon. In 2005, he and animator Shawn Vulliez released a Flash animated music video "Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny" on Newgrounds. This reached over 12 million views on Newgrounds as well as topping the "Funny Five" on The Dr. Demento Show for several weeks and becoming the No. 1 Request for 2006. The song was later included in the 2006 album Dinosaurchestra. An updated recording of the song was released to the Rock Band Network in 2010.
In April 2009, Cicierega released his first four albums as free downloads on his site "neilcic.com", however they are now currently hosted on "lemondemon.com".
In January 2016, Cicierega announced Spirit Phone, a full-length Lemon Demon album released on February 29, 2016. On July 10, 2018, it was announced that copies of the album on CD, cassette tape and vinyl would be sold through Needlejuice Records, who would later distribute remastered versions of Lemon Demon's Christmas EP I Am Become Christmas, as well as Nature Tapes.
Cicierega has also created mashup music under his own name. He released two mashup albums, Mouth Sounds and Mouth Silence, as free downloads in 2014, and a third, Mouth Moods, in 2017. Songs used in these mashups repeatedly include Smash Mouth's "All Star", Barenaked Ladies's "One Week", or in the case of Mouth Silence, Third Eye Blind's "Semi Charmed Life".
Windows 95 Tips, Tricks, and Tweaks
Cicierega created the darkly satirical "Windows 95 Tips, Tricks, and Tweaks" blog, located at http://windows95tips.com. In the blog's telling, Windows 95 is a brooding, evil presence bent on dominating humanity. Most of the posts are faked error messages, with disturbing messages like "Windows needs a lock of your hair to continue," but presented in the exact graphical style of Windows 95. The blog has received favorable press attention.
- On February 26, 2015, Cicierega announced his first point-and-click adventure game, Icon Architect 1.0.
- On February 5, 2018, Cicierega released his first video game, Monster Breeder.
On August 8, 2015, Cicierega married illustrator Ming Doyle. They currently live in Somerville, Massachusetts. On December 31, 2018, the couple announced on Twitter that they had had a daughter named Darcy in March of that year. Cicierega has a younger sister named Emmy, a storyboard artist who notably worked on the Disney animated series Gravity Falls. She is currently working on DuckTales.
- Outsmart (2000)
- Microwave This CD (2001)
- Dimes (2002)
- Circa 2000 (2007)
- OC ReMix: Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge "Monkey Brain Soup for the Soul" (2002)
as Lemon Demon
- Clown Circus (2003)
- Live From The Haunted Candle Shop (2003)
- Hip To The Javabean (2004)
- Damn Skippy (2005)
- Dinosaurchestra (2006)
- View-Monster (2008)
- Almanac 2009 (2009)
- Live (Only Not) (2011)
- I Am Become Christmas EP (2012)
- Nature Tapes EP (2014)
- Spirit Phone (2016)
as Neil Cicierega
- Mouth Sounds (2014)
- Mouth Silence (2014)
- Mouth Moods (2017)