Tuesday, December 3, 2019

First Listen: Holiday Edition

With few noteworthy releases over Thanksgiving (those are at the bottom of this post; we'll have more that we missed next week) and some interesting Christmas releases, let's go holiday crazy!

Nice List:

Josh Rouse - The Holiday Sounds of Josh Rouse: A pleasant, low-key holiday record from a singer-songwriter who has been at it for a long time and nearly always puts out quality work. Completely inoffensive and worth taking some time.

Various Artists - A Punk Rock Christmas Volume 2: As with any compilation like this, you're going to take and leave what is worth hearing here. With that said, this has enough good to at least give it one solid spin and add the stuff you like to a playlist.

Molly Burch - The Molly Burch Christmas Album: Beyond this being a truly solid entry into the holiday release schedule, Burch totally understands how silly the whole affair is and the lack of overall seriousness in this album makes it a little fun, too.

* Letters to Cleo - OK Christmas: The only downside to this is that it's only four songs.
* Andrew Bird - HARK!: Andrew Bird is brilliant, and so is this. Another one I wish was a full-length.
* Sasami - lil drmr bb: A very indie take on some classics. Won't be for everyone, but I really like Sasami so it worked for me.

Naughty List:

Various Artists - You Wish: A Merge Records Holiday Album: I wish this was better. I like a good original Christmas song, and there have been some great indie classics over the last couple decades. This, however, is more miss than hit.

Kasey Musgraves - The Kasey Musgraves Christmas Show: I haven't watched this holiday special yet, but this album isn't making me think I need to postpone Baby Yoda for an evening to catch up. I'd prefer another straightforward Musgraves holiday album as opposed to the equivalent of taping the audio off of an Amazon special.

* Rob Halford - Celestial: Why?
* Piebald - Piebald Presents to You, A Musical Christmas Adventure: Like the comma in this title, it's unnecessary.

Thanksgiving Releases:

Of note:

* Suzanne Sundfor - Music for People in Trouble: Live from the Barbican (Less a live performance and more an experience. I tend to be harsh on live albums and this was really good.)


* Still Corners - Live in Studio
* Sarah P. - Maenads
* Scott and Charlene's Wedding - When in Rome, Carpe Diem
* Ellen Allien - La Musica Es Dios
* clipping. - The Deep
* Keane - Retroactive EP2

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