Mistletunes Accomplished , various artists (Mistletunes)
And we'll only stand down when radio stations stand up and give us some more rockin' Christmas tunes. Welcome to 2006 and the first Mistletunes disc to be available to the public. We did this by creating an iMix (in a truncated form, unfortunately; 4 million songs and I managed to find nine that iTunes didn't have). Anyway, on with the show:
"Merry Xmas Everybody," Camp Freddy — Don't know these guys, but they did a killer take on the old Slade chestnut from the early 70s, the golden age of British rock 'n roll Christmas chart singles.
"My Girlfriend (Forgot Me This Christmas)," The Click Five — An entertaining original from this modern rock band. The title pretty much sums up the plot of this holiday rocker.
"She's Coming Home For Xmas," The Beautiful Losers — This American/Japanese duo amalgamates folk, pop and rock in a way that should bring back the late 60s and early 70s for you folks who still remember that era.
"Hang On Rudolph," The Ebineezer Scrooge Appreciation Society — Love it when folks do mash-ups the old-fashioned way, in this case singing the lyrics to "Rudolph" over "Hang On Sloopy" and, for good measure, "Louie Louie."
"Chanukkah's Da Bomb," Chutzpah — We always look to include at least one ode to the Jewish holiday, and what goes better together than Hanukkah and hip-hop, eh? Matisyahu, eat your heart out.
"Frosty the Snowman ," Borigua Boys and DJ Mattox — From a bargain collection of reggaeton Christmas music, and sung in Spanish to boot. You can almost hear Frosty melting in the Caribbean sun from the very start.
"The First Noel/Mary Mary," Sarah McLachlan — And why wouldn't we take this opportunity to swing from the southern seas to the frosty wilds of Canada with Sarah? Especially since it's getting a little less frosty up there lately (Al Gore, white courtesy phone....). The India-style riffing and percussion starting in the middle is a nice touch.
"Get Behind Me Santa," Sufjan Stevens — From his Christmas box set, seeing the obsession of Christmas music collectors and raising us five discs of holiday music. The antique carols are a little precious, but then so is this and we ran with it anyway.
"I Wanna Kiss You This Christmas," David Carswell and Megan Barnes — Shambling, jangly power pop from the Team Mint Christmas collection.
"Christmas," Cowboy and Spin Girl — A melodic holiday rock shuffle from this duo I found pretty much by accident on iTunes.
"Christmas in the Trailer Park," Antsy McClain and the Trailer Park Troubadors — This guy is chock full of red-state novelties, and this one is a bit more rock than country, so enjoy yourselves.
"Jingle Bells," Richard Cheese — The king of 80s new wave parodies set to cocktail lounge arrangements finally went all Christmas for the kiddies. I shouldn't say more, it's a one-joke arrangement but it's a good joke.
"Jingle Bell Rock," Pas/Cal — From A Very Magistery Christmas, this is a rare attempt to do the song in a different arrangement than the familiar one.
"Snow Plus Christmas," The Pearlfishers — I found this Scottish band on a German website, improbably enough. These guys throw together bits and pieces ranging from Pet Shop Boys to Pet Sounds-era Beach Boys on their album, A Sunflower at Christmas, and this is one of the upbeat numbers.
"Nuttin' But Spam," Robert Lund — A 21st century take on the old novelty "Nuttin' For Christmas." Co-written by Manitoba M. Parsnip, Deadbeat F. Busybody and Mastered B. Goggles. (Kidding.)
"Calling on Mary," Aimee Mann — Regular Mistletunes fans may notice that Aimee keeps showing up on our collections, but she keeps bringing the goods. This original song is from her first full CD of Christmas goodies.
"Christmas Tree on Fire," Holly Golightly — An impossible-to-resist tune about a char-broiled Tannenbaum, on Valentine's Day yet. White Stripes fans may recall Holly from a guest shot on the Elephant album.
"Father Christmas," The Features — Not the Kinks classic, this band delivers a great original stomper of its own for the holiday.
"Last Christmas," Jimmy Eat World — The Wham song gets an intense reading from this popular band.
"A Great Big Sled," The Killers — A fun original from this hip little combo, featuring a guest vocal from Toni Halliday. And who can disagree with this lyric: "Little boys have action toys for brains?" One look at the cover art from this collection and you'll probably apply that sentiment to some big boys too.
"Christmas Ain't Christmas," Smash Mouth — The soulful O'Jays holiday tune gets a romping, stomping bar-band treatment from this bunch of romper-stompers.
"Merry Christmas Baby," Bootsy Collins — Yes, the leader of Bootsy's Rubber Band himself. Here he takes the classic blues tune that arguably started the whole rock Christmas genre and turns it out all funky and stuff.
"Christmas in Fallujah," Jefferson Pepper — Normally we like to go out on an uptempo note, but this wartime lament seemed like an appropriate way to wrap things up this year.
Eras: The Beginning, The Sixties, The Seventies, The Eighties, The Nineties, The 21st Century
Genres: Reggae, Soul/R&B, Rap, Blues, Punk, Surfin' Xmas, Tropical
Novelties: Fifties and Sixties, The Seventies, The Eighties, The Nineties, The 21st Century
Compilations: Regular Comps, Charity Comps, Soundtracks
Special Reports: Recent Releases, Hanukkah, Miscellaneous