Gypsy Charms “It‘s Mother Fuckin‘ Christmas” (2013)

nollaig

Brown Bear Records
Buy: Free!

Brown Bear Records released three largely DIY/punk/experimental Christmas comps between 2013-2015, and as with any DIY Christmas release, the quality can have pretty dramatic swings from song to song. That said, there is a LOT to go through when you look at all 3 releases, 66 songs in total, and I thought I’d put a big ‘ol spotlight on the best of the best, this deliciously-titled track by  Chicago’s Gypsy Charms, “It’s Mother Fuckin’ Christmas.” A punk rock track, delivered with attitude and ramshackle, profane glee, this song is brilliant and less than a minute. Yes, I see the 1:40 next to the track title… but believe me, this thing really begins at 0:50. They kick some ass, then get out of the way, which is a sure fire way to win a fight.

Bottom Line: This is expertly crafted punk rock Christmas.

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la-goons – Krampus EP (2017)

la-goons - Krampus EP

Self Released
Buy: Bandcamp (NYOP)

Illinois’ la-goons have dropped a tight, two-track single that is absolutely worth your time. The garage/punk energy of “Krampus” and “(Mid)westy” have a understated quality that I haven’t quite heard all season. Each song has a midwestern bitterness that is given some levity by the fast beat and lo-fi production. Or more simply, it’s a punk rock aesthetic – some angry shit that puts a smile on your face. Truly enjoyed both tracks, and I think you might too.

Bottom Line: These Illinois goons strike a win for those who hate the cold, which is everyone at some point, no matter how much you like snow.

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Delicious Clam Records presents Delicious Christmas (2014)

Delicious Clam Christmas

Delicious Clam Records
Buy: Bandcamp

Delicious Clam Records‘ first release is Delicious Christmas, a 6-track (largely) Christmas compilation benefitting the Sheffield homeless teenager charity Roundabout.

Best Friends totally knocked it out of the park last year with their original, “When Christmas Comes.” Hopefully starting a tradition that will continue for many more years, they offer yet another Christmas song, a cover of Macca’s “Wonderful Christmastime.” Yes, I know. Truly awful song. So, what does one do with a turd, but dress it up in new clothes and make you believe that its a Baby Ruth. Best Friends have succeeded in convincing me that I just stepped in chocolate – I dig it. They have an attitude that exudes from their music that I enjoy enough for me to probably like a version of Little Drummer Boy, should they attempt that awful song. 

Pjaro’s cover of East 17’s “Stay Another Day” isn’t really a Christmas cover… it’s a Christmas #1 cover. So… I’m not really going to talk about it.

Radical Boy‘s cover of Shakin’ Stevens’ “Merry Christmas Everyone” mixes it up enough with a punk rock edge. To start, I do dig this song – and they do make it their own. I would have done without the hardcore cookie monster growl at the end… for me, it makes the song funny, and I suppose I wasn’t looking for funny.

Pet Rock‘s cover of “Walking in the Air” from The Snowman is one of the more rocking versions I’ve heard. I wasn’t expecting to hear any crunchy guitars on this track, and there they were. Certainly the only version of “Walking in the Air” that you might want to put on a more rocking-out Christmas mix.

“Have a Very Misfits Christmas” is a deceptive title for a cover of “All I Want for Christmas is You.” Its a solid, punk rock version of the oft-covered classic. The only thing holding it down is the fact that so many people cover this song.

Avida Dollars‘ “I Am The Christmas Ghost” is the only original on this release, and it is quite an interesting tune. What other Christmas song do you know that has “hide all your nazi gold” in the lyrics. It starts slow, then turns into an old school Oi! punk/hardcore song. I wish I could make out more of the lyrics, because what I can make out has me intruiged.

Bottom Line: For a punk rock Christmas release, pretty damn strong. It’s only £2 and benefits homeless kids – I’d say that’s a bargain. 4.2/5

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