Sunday, December 25, 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

My favorite (Christmas music) things of 2011

With the arrival of Christmastime comes a flood of new Yuletide music. Most of it is crap, but there are some gems to be found. The following are the songs and albums that monopolized my iPod this season.

She & Him - A Very She & Him Christmas Remember what you thought when you first heard that Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward were putting out a Christmas album? It sounds exactly like that. For me, that's a good thing. While they get points for doing a little role reversal on the holiday date rape anthem "Baby, It's Cold Outside", I think they sped up the tempo just a little too much. My other gripe is that I would've loved to have heard Zooey's angelic pipes tackle a carol or two, but they stay strictly secular on this set. Other than those two (minor) beefs, it's a fun, twee time at the ski lodge.

Emmy the Great & Tim Wheeler - This Is Christmas Going into the season, I was absolutely sure that She & Him' Christmas album would be my favorite. Funny how things don't turn out how you expect. This dark horse has been my most listened album for the past month. There's a little bit of everything on here: a bit of pop, a little surf rock, a pinch of doo wap, and a whole lot of "indie" spirit (jeez, I hate that term). It even has a song about the Yuletide zombie apocalypse! This album contains my favorite new Christmas classic - "Home for the Holidays" - the video for which just fills me with a stocking full of warm fuzzies.

Summer Fiction - Christmas Eve for Two I had never heard this band before, but I was instantly smitten with their free single. Just listening to it brings out the gooey romantic in me. Rather than embarrass myself further, here's how the band sums up the song: "There's a wink-wink going on here but also something sincere and beautiful in the come-on. Especially when the snow starts falling on the song's bridge. She shows up around 2AM, maybe a little drunk from the party she came from." And all is right with the world.

The Plimptons - "Christmas All Over This Town" I am powerless to resist a rock song sung in a thick Scottish brogue and this one about keeping Christmas drinking with friends in your heart all year round is no exception. Grab it (and two other Christmas songs from them) for free while you can.

How To Throw a Christmas Party - "Beautiful Star of the East" In a word: beautiful. This tale of the wise men's journey to the Christ child (and His redemption of us all) is a real winner. Bummed that Sufjan Stevens hasn't put out any new Christmas music in a few years? This is the next best thing.

Julie Roberts - Who Needs Mistletoe The title track is a sultry number with just the right combination of naughty and nice. (I was hesitant to include it on this year's mix, but she personally convinced me.) The rest of the EP is a nice combination of standards and carols, though far less sexy. Not that that's a bad thing, but my Christmas wish for next year is that she will release a full-fledged country Christmas quiet storm album.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Stop crying and fight your father.

Happy Festivus! Every year I want to throw a Festivus party, yet I never do. Maybe next year. By then, all of my rage and disappointment in you people will have really built up.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Happy Hanukkah to all of my Chosen readers

I had my very first chocolate babka the other day (delicious!) and I just watched "The Night Hanukkah Harry Saved Christmas". My gentile outreach duties are done for the year, no?

Happy Hanukkah!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Very Micah Christmas 2011

Well, my merry little friends, Christmas is nigh and that means it's time for me to shove some Yuletide music deep into your earholes. This is the thirteenth edition of my mix, so most of the old chestnuts that you hear year in and year out have already been included at one point or another. If these songs are new to you, hopefully you'll dig them. And if you don't, then just wait until next year, you ingrate.

1. "Home for the Holidays" - Emmy the Great & Tim Wheeler
2. "Santa Stole My Lady" - Fitz & the Tantrums
3. "Party Hard" - Zach Gill
4. "The Christmas Song Song" - Rocky and Balls
5. "Winter Night" - Little & Ashley
6. "Angels We Have Heard on High" - Sufjan Stevens
7. "Get Down for the Holidays" - Jenny O.
8. "Beautiful Star of the East" - How to Throw a Christmas Party
9. "I'll Be Home for Christmas" - Dean Martin & Scarlett Johansson
10. "What the Hell (It's the Holidays)" - Joey + Rory
11. "Who Needs Mistletoe" - Julie Roberts
12. "Silver Bells" - Raul Malo
13. "What Will Santa Claus Say?" - Christabel and the Jons
14. "Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow" - Regis Philbin
15. "Zat You, Santa Claus?" - Buster Poindexter
16. "Christmas Smorgasbord" - The Swedish Chef
17. "The Christmas Goose" - The Oxford Waits with the Mellstock Band
18. "Ring of Hannukah" - Paul F. Tompkins
19. "All I Want For Christmas Is You" - Mike Viola and the Candy Butchers
20. "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" - Butch Walker
21. "Toy Jackpot" - Blackalicious
22. "Christmas All Over This Town" - The Plimptons
23. "George Bailey" - Carolyn Sills
24. "Baby, It's Cold Outside" - The Avalanches
25. "Sleigh Ride" - She & Him
26. "White Christmas" - Otis Redding
27. "Adeste Fideles" - Frank Sinatra
28. "Always in the Season" - Pomplamoose
29. surprise!

Grab a .rar file of all of these songs here. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Friday, December 9, 2011

This just reinforces my Mrs. Claus fetish for another year.


Last night's Christmas-themed episode of Community was great, full of fun songs, the usual rapidfire jokes, and a wonderful takedown of Glee. Since I've long been a big fan of Alison Brie, the highlight was Annie in a Santa suit and the "diminishing returns" of her decreasingly sexy/increasingly air-headed song and dance, of course. Yar, the above animated GIF will keep me company on those lonely nights at sea.

Here's hoping this was just a mid-season finale and not a series finale.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

When there's no more room in Hell, the dead will decorate our trees

I love zombie movies/books/TV shows/games/scrolls/wax cylinders/sky writing, etc. I love Christmas (natch). Therefore, my love of these zombie ornaments is a no-brainer*. If some kind soul out there wants to get me a stocking stuffer, I'm partial to the gingerbread man and the thumb. (Or is that a toe?)

*Pun fully, regrettably intended.