If merging Ben Folds and They Might Be Giants is your dream hybrid, welcome to the world of Jonathan Coulton. After a half-decade hiatus, the master of oddball, offbeat subject matter and bedroom-pop music has returned with his fullest-sounding project, Artificial Heart.

Coulton enlisted TMBG’s John Flansburgh as producer, brought in a real band, used a professional studio and added special guests, including Suzanne Vega, who duets on Coulton’s understated ode to Icarus, “Now I Am an Arsonist.” Sara Quinn of Tegan and Sara brings her textured voice to a new rendition of pop tune “Still Alive,” used for the closing credits for popular video game “Portal.”

Coulton also includes a remix of “Want You Gone,” from “Portal 2.” Another highlight is guitar pop gem “Nemeses,” where the Long Winters’ John Roderick sings about a villain seeking a protagonist/hero. Several tracks are flickered by mental deterioration: psychosis underlies the chipper “Good Morning Tucson!,” concerning a television morning host losing his mind, while “Sticking It To Myself” features a man who has a precarious lack of self-control.

Artificial Heart is currently available. Jonathan Coulton performs Nov. 16 at House of Blues Anaheim.