XO For the Holidays 6, various artists (XO)
The artists management company has been compiling its clients onto Christmas albums for years, as the title suggests, and this is the 2013 collection. "Bombay Beach Christmas" by St. Cloud is an electro-pop outing touting the idea of water skiing on the holiday, Magnuson also reaches for the synths on "O Holy Night," but then the guitars come out to crunch things rock-style, and The Hague uses acoustic guitars to paint a dour holiday landscape in "Hey Parker It's Christmas." Paper Tongues takes "O Come O Come Emanuel" uptempo with synths and multiple percussion instruments, Electric Shepherd stretches out with the epic "Angels in the Grove," The Smoking Flowers faintly recall T-Rex while spraying the tree with double entendres in "Ho Ho Ho (A Bow and Nothing More)," and Fred Roth Revue recall early new wave guitar bands with "Reindeer Get Lonely." The always-delightful Piney Gir rocks out with the short but satisfying "Every Day's a Holiday" and Here Comes Everybody upset the calendar by singing about a "Christmas in September." Another fine XO collection, and as always it's free.
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