Christmas Aguilera “Once Upon a Time” (2022)

Self Released

I check in every year, hoping to get a “Yup, we’re working on it!” and thankfully, after a week or so of anticipation, the new Christmas Aguilera has dropped. One of the stalwart presences on Christmas Underground, I believe I have mentioned them on every podcast I have ever appeared on (3 now!) and will continue to do so as long as folks make the mistake of asking me to talk to them. “Once Upon a Time” fits beautifully into that gen-x/millenial Christmas pocket that my wife and I perfectly straddle. Remembering our youth, dreaming of those Adidas predator cleats (or boots) meant to help you curve the ball or that copy of Mortal Combat… you don’t have to necessarily have to relate to those specific items to remember that feeling of slightly-desperate Christmas hope. This is a very specific feeling of anticipation that I am happy to tap into and Christmas Aguilera captures that beautifully.

Bottom Line: I never know what I’m going to get from Christmas Aguilera, and each year they manage to bring something new and wonderful to the table.


Christmas Aguilera – All Wrapped Up / All I Want Is You (2021)

Self Released
Bandcamp | Crowdfunder

I somtimes like to imagine a young music fan, who has just gotten this great idea to look for some different Christmas songs, and has found Christmas Underground. I am oddly jealous of this young person – to be able to hear these bands for the first time. They’ll look at my tag cloud, and not know what to make of the weird names on it… including this band, Christmas Aguilera, seeming more like a typo than a premier indie rock Christmas band. Christmas Aguilera are most certainly not a typo, and have returned once more with a new, double-A sided single to brighten our holiday season. Side A, “All Wrapped Up,” is a holiday gone to hell, but with a great chorus to sing along to. Side AA, “All That I Want is You,” is an extremely funny and sweet song about “only wanting you for Christmas.” The lyrics are too great to not give you a taste here:

Don’t write me any song
Don’t buy me the biography of Neil Armstrong
Don’t order me a piece of the moon
Don’t buy me a silvery spoon
And don’t knit me a sock
Don’t cut of all your hair and give me a lock
Don’t make me a strawberry milkshake
Don’t buy me a diamond, real or fake
I’ll never want a tv show
No sunflowers or any old Van Gogh
Don’t buy me any car, write it off
Don’t buy me anything that I can scoff

All I want is you
What Mariah said is true
All I want is you
Like ABBA sang you’re my Waterloo
Got me higher than Katmandu

Damn they are so f*ing clever. Christmas Aguilera are just so much fun to listen to, and I’m grateful for every year that I get a note in my inbox with more songs. Of course, all proceeds from these songs, just like all their other songs, go to benefit Shelter, a UK charity working to end homelessness. This year is a little bit extra-special, as Christmas Aguilera have created an additional Crowdfunder with some pretty great rewards. You can donate via the Crowdfunder and just buy the new songs, but throw in a little more and you can get a Christmas carol sung by Christmas Aguilera. Dig a bit deeper and they will record a Christmas song of your choice for you! Have deep pockets and live within 50 miles of London (not me!)? They will play your house! This is TOO COOL.

Man… what song should I request…

Bottom Line: Christmas Aguilera has been churning out these incredible Christmas tunes for so long that it almost makes you forget that WRITING A GOOD CHRISTMAS SONG IS HARD. This band has the spirit, and it just feels effortless.


Christmas Aguilera “Why Can’t I Go To Sleep” (2020)

Self Released
Bandcamp | Bandcamp (Full Album)

There are a few bands who this blog is pretty much wholly devoted to, and Christmas Aguilera is one. I have yet to miss a post on a release, and as long as they continue to record them, I’ll continue to write about them. They can hit you with something that makes you smile, something that make you cry, or fucking both! This year they’ve got a few things up their sleeves, but we’ll concentrate on the new song first. “Why Can’t I Go To Sleep” is actually a song that they wrote around the time of their first EP, the self-titled Christmas Aguilera. Played live but never recorded, the band rediscovered it amongst some bedroom recordings, and decided to give it a go. COVID being what it is, the extra time afforded some more collaboration – a guest drummer, a bass player and a choir of friends joined the effort. The recordings were passed around and each person added their part, until we have this beautiful, choral mantra to open the song, “Go to sleep / Why Can’t I / Go to sleep / Sheep counting / Go to sleep / Why Can’t I / Go to sleep.” Then, the tension of the mantra breaks and the song bursts open. You can feel the joy and love in this song, as the voices raise and the shouts go up. You get the feeling that the collaborative production of the track was a pressure release valve. To participate in this song was to press play on a world that has been perpetually paused… a light at the end of the tunnel. The excitement of Christmas, and of the future, comes through beautifully, and is just what I needed.

Christmas Aguilera have something else up their sleeve this year – they are finally going to be on all those fancy streaming services. I know most of you are on Spotify, and so am I, but I gotta say – I’m seriously considering Tidal because it pays artists more. I’m pretty invested in Spotify, but maybe we’re a two-streaming service family for a bit? I could get the family on board… give Tidal a run… and help all those people whose music I love buy dinner, pay for a kid’s college, etc. You know I don’t post many streaming links here – it takes 1500 streams to equal one song (Billboard) – but the convenience is unavoidable. I encourage you to buy the song. I want you to buy records (I bought 3 today), buy t-shirts and buy livestream tickets. Think about how great it feels to be told you did a good job! That is what buying someone’s record feels like to them – it is validation for their hard work and worth as an artist! SHOW YOU LOVE THEM, don’t just tell them. Oh yeah, I started this paragraph by saying that the entire Christmas Aguilera catalog is going to be on streaming. This is wonderful, and please help spread their music – AFTER you purchase it on Bandcamp and help support Shelter, a UK charity that aids the homeless, because that is who Christmas Aguilera continues to support with all their proceeds. This is a year like no other to think of the less fortunate… so let’s not just think, let’s do.

Bottom Line: Christmas Aguilera pull a treasure out of the closet and wow us once more.


Christmas Aguilera “Icicle Trickle” (2019)

Self Released
Buy: Bandcamp

I would normally either get their email, flip out, and post the new Christmas Aguilera song within the span of 20 minutes. This year, it came a bit late, when my time is in high demand to go get this out of the attic, to go to the store, to finish up that laundry before everyone gets here. So, while my post comes late, perhaps you’ve found “Icicle Trickle” before I’ve told you about it, and thus you have an extra day to enjoy it during the proper seasonal setting. This seventh release by one of the great Christmas bands working is also their most funky. While the very beginning has the boys channeling Queen, they quickly transition to cheeky Grapes & Friends’ boogie-down territory. The lyrics are a trip:

Be my tinsel
And wrap yourself around my tree
Make me grin so
Let’s keep it going for a week
I love you too much
Your foot’s on my clutch
Though Christmas is beyond my skillset
Stuck in this sweater
It’s scratchy as heck
Jump in that’s better
Gonna stay forever in this pickle
Until the Icicle Trickles

The overt sexual innuendo is nothing new to Christmas Aguilera, as that is part of what made me love them with their first self-titled EP, with the fantastic “I Wanna Give You a Present” setting a great, playful tone. However, then they manage to sneak this beautiful line in amongst the silliness, “Yeah Christmas holidays / Make them every day / And stretch this elastic band of love.” What a line! The production on this latest is a rich as ever, making you wonder how they heck they pull it together at the last minute like this – they only had a CA song meeting a few weeks ago! Be sure to check out their regular gig, Guilt Coins, who also recorded a remarkable cover of Joni Mitchell’s “River” this year.

Bottom Line: Bands like Christmas Aguilera are why I write this blog. A true pleasure every year that they bless us with a song.


Christmas Aguilera “Christmas on Mars” (2018)

Self Released
Buy: Bandcamp

I have been waiting for this moment. It is officially Christmas, as my favorite Christmas band is back. Christmas Aguilera return with their funkiest jam yet. Featuring members of the fantastic Hero & Leander, this band has CHRISTMAS MUSIC PERFECTED. They have been writing these amazing, oddly touching songs in the years since their somewhat naughty and brilliant self-titled debut, and “Christmas on Mars” definitely breaks the mold. You can dance to this thing! Fluttering synths, flickering guitar lines, and a bobbing bass – I can’t stop moving in my seat! The music is what grabs you, but these lyrics are so damn fun and just as clever as always:

“Leaving home for Christmas
Packed my old guitar
The cat’s in her space suit
We’ve stocked up on dry fruit
The ice caps have melted
And everybody’s gone
There was no place like home
But buckle up our time has come”

In a year of gorgeous, touching, slow songs, I’m on board with funky Christmas Aguilera, and am looking to forward to our future in space. Especially if they have packed enough of those Trader Joe’s dried mango slices…

Bottom Line: I can’t say enough good things about Christmas Aguilera. I contact them every year in the hopes that the tradition continues… and thankfully it has.  As with all their releases, this song benefits Shelter, who believes everyone should have a home. Sounds like a good deal. You should probably buy ALL their songs right now, if you haven’t already.



Christmas Aguilera “Footsteps” (2017)

Christmas Aguilera "Footsteps"

Self Released
Buy: Bandcamp

Back in from a year in the cold, Christmas Aguilera have returned. For those who have been readers for years, and I trust this is most of you (as my stats don’t really change from year-to-year), you know how I feel about this band. I fucking love them. I saw that they released this track, made my sick wife some tea, and told her I would be back. I said, “Christmas Aguilera have released a track, and they are my jam.” She seemed to understand, so I think I’m ok. There, a glimpse into my nutty, Christmas blogging life. Jealous? Of course. Back on track, Christmas Aguilera’s latest in a string of hits is “Footsteps,” which finds the narrator laying in bed, listening as his father walks around the house dressed as Santa, on Christmas Eve. This is the second song released this year that has torn down my defenses; having a kid at Christmas is (for some reason) much more emotional this year than in the previous three. The spoken word part was particularly beautiful:

“The king, laughing
Strokes his nylon beard once or twice
Removes the gravy-stained tea towels
Stuffed inside a father Christmas outfit
He bought in some tacky supermarket
And while the snow whispers at the windows
He smiles down at the little prince
His little prince
And the same words
Fall from their lips at the same time

I wanna stay…”

I swear, I’m becoming a mess. The best part of this new-found ability to tear up at songs, is that you’re not going to get emotionally invested in a BAD song. This song is, as usual, brilliant. The music, the lyrics and the production are all just as wonderful, catchy and interesting as their previous songs. Therefore, it should be an easy move to shell out $2, buy this song and support Shelter, as everybody deserves to have a home. Shit, now I’m thinking about homelessness. This is going to be a rough night.

Bottom Line: Seeing Christmas Aguilera pop up in your Bandcamp feed feels like winning $20 on a scratch-off – and this song might just be a $50. Go “Like” Hero & Leander on Facebook while you’re at it too, because every mysterious Christmas band has a friend or two you might like.


Christmas Aguilera “The Snowmen” (2015)

Christmas Aguilera - The Snowman

Self Released
Buy: Bandcamp

Everything in the world will be perfect for at least three minutes and fifteen seconds today. Why? Because Christmas Aguilera is back! “The Snowmen” was released and I don’t think Bandcamp has even notified me yet; I just happened upon it this morning! Christmas Aguilera have written some of the best, for lack of a better term, saucy Christmas songs I know, and they have also written some of the sweetest. “The Snowmen” most certainly falls in the sweet camp, and in a year of such darkness, I’m perfectly fine with that. The song tells the story of a snowman who realizes he has feelings. He is treated as a real boy, and loves every moment. It has a wonderful ending that can be embraced by all people, snowpeople or otherwise.

Tear up the rules
Christmas doesn’t got to be
A kick in the snowballs

The track, as always, benefits their local east London homeless charity. Love these guys.

Bottom Line: Listen to every single Christmas Aguilera track – because they are as close to batting 1000 as any band I can possibly think of. “The Snowmen” continues their unprecedented run of absolutely killer Christmas songs.


Christmas Aguilera “Santa’s Car” (2014)

Christmas Aguilera "Santa's Car"

Self Released
Buy: Bandcamp

It is no secret that I absolutely love Christmas Aguilera. So… I keep in touch and annoyingly e-mail them each year, wondering if they are doing a new Christmas song. Therefore, I knew a song was coming, and think it’s well worth the wait. CA always takes a different tack when it comes to writing Christmas songs, and I greatly appreciate that. A tale is spun of Santa experiencing massive budget cuts, with Christmas spirit in steep decline. Yet he persists, and there’s a sweetness to the melody that lifts it from its dreary premise towards that glimmer of hope. As always, this song benefits their local homeless charity in East London – so you have no reason not to buy this song. Well done, Christmas Aguilera.

In a somewhat related matter, you should also check out Hero and Leander. Just cuz. Not that they might be part of this mysterious Christmas Aguilera band… Did Steve tell you that? That Steve…

Bottom Line: I never know what to expect, and this more subdued tune is yet another piece in a beautiful puzzle. 4.8/5


Christmas Aguilera “This Sky” (2013)

Christmas Aguilera - THe Sky

Buy: Bandcamp

Christmas Aguilera can pretty much do no wrong in my book… and with very little additional information as to who this mysterious group is, here they go and put out another wonderful Christmas tune. “This Sky” is the A-side to their brand-spanking-new charity digital single (as in, there is a B-side), and it is glorious. With their trademark sense of humor, and wonderful ability to find an intriguing hook, this tale of an economic misfortune cockblock (pardon my language) is not to be missed. Oh, and all the net profits go to Crisis, the national charity for the homeless in the UK. So don’t be a jerk and buy everything they’ve ever put out, OK?

Bottom Line: I LOVE THIS SONG. Well done guys. Please keep the tradition alive next year. 5/5


Christmas Aguilera – S/T EP (2012)

Christmas Aguilera cover

Buy: Bandcamp

So… to post or not to post. Is it truly selfish to want to keep this to myself, so that I might impress my Christmas music loving friends upon receipt of their mix CD? If it were not for the good cause this EP is supporting… I might have kept it in my back pocket.

The mysterious “supergroup” that claims to be the “greatest band since Wizzard,” has put out a truly excellent 4-song Christmas EP that will be one of the highlights of my personal mix. Four original songs that really push my buttons, be it a love of the melancholy, the political, or the secular… this EP has it all.

The leadoff track, “I Wanna Give You a Present,” is… for lack of a better word… dirty. And awesome. Its dirtiness not only comes from the playful lyrics, but specifically from the singer’s voice, which just sounds like he’s got something in mind for you, and you’re going to like it.

The second song is my personal favorite – “I Want a Car” revisits that classic idea of just wanting your significant other for Christmas… and damn I love that chorus. The vocals are a little rough-around-the-edges at points, but perfectly so. This is no way a knock on the performance; he has a way of making the vocals seem more sincere than a pretty voice ever could.

“Lennon, Oh” is the kind of political Christmas song that I knew I could get behind – “Lennon, Oh, where are you when we need you – Cause War’s Not Over.” Fantastic chorus – man this band can swing a chorus.

The final track, “Red Nose, Red Dress,” has a great groove – and would benefit from offering up the lyrics… because I don’t believe I understand it… “One longstanding misunderstanding, I am Rudolph, I am no man?” Who cares if I understand. It’s fantastic.

Really, this thing is so good that you will wish that it was 8 tracks long – because I do believe they have 4 more! The group will be performing 8 originals at the “Jolly Santa Social Club” benefit show on Saturday December 10 at The Victoria in London. All proceeds of both the EP and the show benefit Crisis, the national charity for the homeless.

Bottom Line: Buy it. It’s only ₤3 – its very enjoyable all the way through, and often quite brilliant. 5/5