zappa phaze two
Essential Zappa: Phaze Two
ween comp
Understanding Boognish:
The Best of Ween
drag comp
Drag: A Witch House
Essential Zappa: Phaze One
Radiohead Album Series
It Took the Night to Believe
Killing in Style
Cadillac Casanovas
A Night in the Box
Brasil, Para Sempre!
Same As It Ever Was:
The Best of Talking Heads
Universe Dirt
The Best of
American Music Club
The New Dance
Cut the Kids in Half
Machines of Canterbury
Archimedes Said It Best
The Early Rock of
West Germany
Music from
the Republic of Iceland
Take Me Back:
The Best of M. Ward
The Best of...
Of Montreal
Dust & Diamonds
The Best of
Sigur Ros
The Hall of Mirrors

Countdown to Christmas

15 Days!
The Knife - Christmas Reindeer
Tonight's Christmas song is one of the weirdest Christmas songs I've ever heard and is from the Knife, who is...well, always interesting themselves. Written from the perspective of one of Santa's reindeer, The Knife gave this song away in 2006 as a gift. But who cares, just enjoy.

So I learned tonight that the 12 days of Christmas are not leading UP TO Christmas, they're actually after. There's...something...interesting.

Tonight's song is from Yo La Tengo and is a wonderful fuzzy lo fi christmas indie song, the kind of stuff Yo La Tengo are masters at writing.

I'm going to be posting these tunes in the same post adding one every night so these don't become obnoxious.

13 Days!

Cocteau Twins - Frosty the Snowman
It's both, somehow, very surprising and strangely appropriate that Cocteau Twins covered two Christmas songs on their 1993 EP "Snow". By that time the group had of course evolved past their post-punk/goth roots, and even past their shoegaze/dreampop pioneering days  and were writing music that was a great deal more accessible. There was definitely not another time in their career where you could have seen them releasing this, but their icy ethereal sound lends a great deal to making this Christmas classic sound gorgeously refreshing.
12 Days!

Julian Casablancas - Christmas Treat
A little pick me up tonight with a dude that always writes great pop songs, Julian Casablancas, better known for his role as lead singer of the Strokes. He also put out a fantastic solo album last year, along with this catchy as hell Christmas single.

11 Days!

The Waitresses - Christmas Wrapping
Here's a goofy track from The Waitresses released in 1981. You probably know the Waitresses by their early-80's synth-pop one hit wonder "I Know What Boy's Like", and while this track isn't similar, it does have that fun, carefree 80's atmosphere and cheesiness sealed in  well written Christmas song wrapping.

10 Days!

The Darkness - Christmas Time (Don't Let the Bells End)
I have a soft spot for The Darkness. Humor, kick-ass awesome wailing vocalist, great pop songwriting, 80's nostalgia. This Christmas song is no different, but gives a pretty melancholy look at a Christmas and spending a holiday away from those that we love. Well I guess when you look at it that way it's not really humorous. I don't know if they're being serious half the time, though. Doesn't matter I guess, just listen.

9 Days!

The Golden Filter - White Nights (Psychic TV cover)
One of, if not my favorite Christmas song discovery is New York, NY electronica band The Golden Filter's cover of Psychic TV's creepy holiday single White Nights. Part of why the song is so uneasing is that the lyrics borrow from lunatic cult leader Jim Jones death tapes before their deaths at Jonestown. Strange; but you cannot ignore the song's beauty.

8 Days!

DMA-SC - The First Blip Blop Noel
A little Chiptune for you tonight. I have to admit I love the genre; growing up in the early 90s, always a huge fan of videogames, the textures and timbres used are familiar and can be extremely catchy. Like this song--a rendition of The First Noel, this song by artist DMA-SC (from their Christmas compilation The 8bits of Christmas)  is catchy as hell and kind of addicting. By the way, the entire song was composed on an original Atari ST.

7 Days!

Cocteau Twins - Winter Wonderland
Part two of the Cocteau Twins' 1993 'Snow' EP is another blissfully fuzzy Christmas rendition that I think is even better than the first. Liz Frasier does this strange thing with the notes of the song, tweaking them ever so slightly as to create just enough dissonance to keep things interesting, but we never lose sight of the classic song we all know.

6 Days!

First Aid Kit - Blue Christmas
Tonight we have a beautiful song from folksy Swedish group (and sisters) First Aid Kit who have been recently picked up by Jack White's Third Man Records and are releasing a single under the name soon.  These girls have a talent for working together on vocal harmonies and are definitely developing a really nice sound.
5 Days!

The Bird and the Bee - Carol of the Bells
Just 5 days already? Sheesh, this has been going by quick. One of my favorite classic Christmas songs tonight, Carol of the Bells done by avant-synthpop Los Angeles group The Bird and the Bee who put their signature jazzy and playful, but sardonic sound on and already pretty weird song. It's funny how when you hear something so much you don't realize how really strange a song can be.

4 Days!

The Raveonettes - Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)
In 2008 fuzzy nostalgia-obsessed Danish rockers The Raveonettes released their Wishing You a Rave Christmas EP with this great shoegaze inspired cover of Darlene Love's 1963 hit Christmas (Baby Please Come Home). The Raveonettes put a sheen on the song with the help of some retro synths that gives the song a refreshing uneasiness and sense of longing that's pretty appropriate considering the context of the song.

3 Days!

The Flaming Lips - Christmas at the Zoo
You know, I wouldn't put it past The Flaming Lips, and I'm kind of surprised actually that they haven't put out a Christmas song nowhere near Christmas season and went about their merry little bat-shit crazy world like nothing happened. OH WAIT, THEY DID YOU SAY? Wayne Coyne and his troupe already have a history with the holiday in the infamously delayed Christmas On Mars, but before that there was Christmas At the Zoo, a random Christmas song about giving the animals at the zoo something to celebrate on Jesus' birthday in the middle of their 1995 psyche-pop album Clouds Taste Metallic (that was released in September, mind you).

2 Days!

Kate Bush - December Will Be Magic Again
Quirky 80's siren Kate Bush can seem pretty cheesy on the outside, I can see what you're thinking, but this song is pretty complex underneath the FM Synth and glitter facade. This woman was, and I imagine is still a genius. Here she she speaks of sacred holidays gone past, which is understandable especially in todays hyper-shopping, retail crazed spirit of Christmas.

1 Days!

The Walkmen - Christmas Party
Festivities with some found sound from a real Christmas Party, HOW APPROPRIATE...from the Walkmen.

OMGZ CHRISTMAS EVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

0 Days!

Sufjan Stevens - That Was the Worst Christmas Ever!
Merry Christmas u guize. Tonight we have one of the best original Christmas songs I know of, from a wonderful artist I'm sure you're well familiar with. In 2006 Sufjan released his humongous 6-disk Christmas music box set, a collection of 6 EPs he had recorded over the years for family and friends. On volume 3 is this gem that, though pessimistic in nature, creates a real emotional connection to the feeling of Christmas with Sufjan's usual honest and candid lyrics.

Later today I'll be posting what we've been counting down to so, you know, check that out after you've opened your other presents and pigged out on Christmas lunch/dinner.

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