A Family Christmas In Your Ass, various artists (KROQ)
The Kevin and Bean compilations were a Christmas fanatic's tradition through the 1990s to the mid-2000s, particularly those who like their holidays to include rock 'n roll. I've of to over the years, limited by the fact that the nerve center and home office of this Internet holiday way station is far to the east of the these United States, while the radio station from which these compilations emanate is hard by the West Coast of this selfsame country, making purchase of hardcopy albums difficult and/or expensive. As I'm still getting content moved over from the old static version of the site to the current content-managed site, I stumbled over the fact that I still had a Kevin & Bean comp hiding on my desk that had never been posted before, so here it is. This one, from 1997, is billed as a "greatest hits" version, compiling the best of the series from the early to mid-1990s, all of which had previously been released on cassette. This collection added a few new items to the playlist in honor of the series' switchover to CD. Just as all the others did, this mixes music from rock bands and spoken word items from comedians and celebrities. A couple of rarities that don't show up much nowadays from this album include Squirrel Nut Zippers' "Santa Claus Is Smoking Reefer" and Snoop Dogg's two songs "Christmastime in the LBC" and, with Nate Dogg, "Twas the Night." Smashing Pumpkins' "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and Stone Temple Pilots' "Christmastime Is Here" were done live, Third Eye Blind's "One of Those Christmas Days" sounds like it was done live in the studio, and John Wesley Harding banters with Kevin & Bean on "Feel the Warmth." Poe, she of "Angry Johnny" fame, pulls off a seriously intentioned version of "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer" that almost breathes life back into that overplayed novelty. Smash Mouth does an Elvis impression on their "Blue Christmas," Soul Coughing plays "Suzy Snowflake," ska stars Reel Big Fish take on "Mele Kalikimaka," Mighty Mighty Bosstones offer "Christmastime," and Presidents of the United States contribute "Christmas Piglet." Songs that have turned up elsewhere more frequently are Sugar Ray's "Little St. Nick," Everclear's "Santa Baby," Tori Amos' "Little Drummer Boy" and Beck's "Little Drum Machine Boy." A group called Mmm offers their version of "Me and Mrs. Claus," a parody of the Billy Paul hit, though not the same parody done by Bob Rivers. Spoken word contributions come from Johnny Cash, Jon Stewart, Bobcat Goldthwait, Cindy Crawford, Henry Winkler, David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, Gene Simmons and Jenny McCarthy. As you might guess from the title, R-rated language crops up occasionally. I've linked the cover art to an Amazon page that will connect you to 3rd-party sellers who have new and used versions of this disc.
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