Yes I know it’s October but this week Bob Dylan released ‘Christmas In The Heart’ his 47th album… a Christmas album.
When I saw this announced months ago I was extremely excited. The thought of Dylan lighting up my Christmas intruiged me, then I heard some of the tracks and read a couple of reviews that simply stated ‘a Dylan album which fails because it’s not enough like a Dylan album; and a Christmas album which fails because, confoundingly, it’s sung by Bob Dylan.’
So it got me thinking… are there any good Christmas albums that aren’t compilations of the usual high street shop soundtracks?
Sufjan Stevens album is by far the more superior of the two and includes 5 cd’s that Sufjan made over the years for his family & friends before releasing all on a 5cd pack in 2006. Over the 5 cd’s some songs are repeated and they include Christmas stereotypes like ‘Silent Night’ & ‘We Three Kings’, however what makes this collection unique and very listenable is that there are Sufjan originals in here. Tracks like ‘Christmas in July’ & ‘Get Behind Me Santa’ are fun and Christmas worthy. However, what steals the show is a glorious track called ‘Sister Winter’ which is heartbreaking, nostalgic then joyous. It is a track that I find myself returning to throughout the year and urge all to track it down. (P.S. The album also comes with a Comic Strip & Stickers…ACE!!!!)
The Aimee Mann album is less interesting with regards to uniqueness, however always gets a play for one track… ‘You’re A Mean One Mr Grinch’ is excellent, makes me smile everytime. There are two originals on this CD tucked in there along with Christmas classics one of which is written by Jon Brion, so anyone that is as obsessed with Magnolia like me then will get a kick out of that also.
So like I said, I’m no Christmas album expert so I put it to you… are there any really good Christmas albums?
Leave a comment and come closer to Christmas we will blog about our responses… or lack of!