Dog Legs - Holiday EP

Dog Legs – Holiday E.P. (2015)

Soft Power
Buy: CassetteiTunes | Amazon.uk

Lo-fi indie fuzz pop. That’s my stab at explaining London/Brighton’s Dog Legs. They have an edge and a sense of humor that immediately grabbed me. April saw their latest release, Holiday E.P., and mixed into the shotgun silliness that is Dog Legs, were two songs that could be considered Christmas/holiday tunes. “Holiday” leads off the release, and this song, more-so than any other on the release, has a much more traditional lyrical structure. You know… verses, choruses, those things. Some of their songs, such as “Ice Cream Cone” are pretty much one sentence of fun. Its got a great sound – certainly a contender for my mix. The second prospect is the much sillier “Xmas Cookie.” Great music, fun, certainly silly – it all depends on what your mix needs. Too much heavy stuff? Lots of yearning for lost love and childhood? “Xmas Cookie” might snap you out of it.

Bottom Line: I really dig this whole release. I wish I could find a place where “Xmas Cookie” was also available, because it appears that iTunes/Google Play/Amazon.uk only have a 2-song single version with “Holiday.” Sorry that the cassette is gone too – with only 100 copies, it was not going to last long. Perhaps if a groundswell of interest amasses from my extremely influential underground Christmas music blog, they will repress. So, all four of you dedicated readers, contact Soft Power Records and beg. I will update the post if any additional options develop. 4.6/5

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Coal: A Winter Split

Coal: A Winter Split (2015)

Breadking Records
Buy: Bandcamp

Milwaukee’s Breadking Records first release is a 4-track, winter (and Christmas) themed E.P…. released this February! The lead-off track, “On A Quiet Winter Night” by Hello Death is a beautiful weaving of three voices, a cello, guitar and brandy. J.E. Sunde‘s “Rest in the Everlasting Arm” blends layered vocals, sparse notes and waves of electronic instrumentation; truly a break from the norm while remaining in the folk genre. Boom Forest‘s take on “The Holly & the Ivy,” is yet another excellent stab at a recent cover du jour. It’s quite atmospheric, as the instruments ring and seem to hang in the air. Christopher Porterfield bats cleanup on the E.P. with my favorite track on the release. Porterfield may be better-known as frontman of the Milwaukee-based folk band Field Report, but with this solo track, he leaves the genre behind to rock out a bit more. “Christmas Ghost” is a stone-cold lock for my 2015 mix. The driving beat, the shimmering keys, the booze… sign me up.

Look for this release to be released on cassette later on in the year, but for now, you can buy each single track on Bandcamp.

Bottom Line: Solid all the way through… this truly lives up to the label’s intent. 4.8/5 

“When I was growing up, every other Christmas or so, my mom would forget about a really awesome present and randomly find it some months later. It would always be one of the sickest gift and have a lot of thought and love. Please accept this release as a very late present on behalf of all of us at Breadking.”

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