9 (More) Great New Christmas Albums

They won't make you want to kick a reindeer

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While the holidays mean many things to many people, one thing we can all agree on is that there’s too much of the same old holiday music played every year.

Whether in the shopping center or the supermarket or on hold with your bank, Christmas carols are inescapable. As a follow up to “9 Christmas Albums That Won’t Make You Want to Punch an Elf,” here are nine more albums to get you through the holiday season in style, even if you’ve worn a hole in your copy of A John Waters Christmas, can’t imagine spinning Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas and Mark Kozelek Sings Christmas Carols won’t be out until next year (although you can go here now and listen to some of it.)

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[01]  Nick Lowe, Quality Street: A Seasonal Selection For All The Family

The man behind tracks like “Cruel to Be Kind” and “I Knew the Bride (When She Used to Rock and Roll)” released his first-ever holiday album this year. Lowe describes this album as, “a sleigh bell-free zone,” which is an apt description of the often-dark album, which only includes one yuletide standard — a brass-stoked “Silent Night.” The remaining tracks are forgotten gems like Roger Miller’s wistful classic “Old Toy Trains”, original tracks and traditional hymns — all performed in Lowe’s singular style.

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[02]  Bad Religion, Christmas Songs

Put some punk in your Christmas with with this unlikely album from rock legends Bad Religion. The album features a merry blend of hard-driving traditional Christmas hymns that manage to still sound like Bad Religion  — plus a new mix of their single “American Jesus,” which gives the song a new twist.

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[03]  Dr. Dog, Oh My Christmas Tree

Originally intended as a gift to the band’s family and friends, Dr. Dog decided to release their first holiday EP. The four tracks on the mini-album are chockfull of “eggnog enhancers, tinsel-tossing cookie-cutting ribbon-tying types.” In keeping with the Christmas spirit, 100 percent of the proceeds will be donated to Feeding America.

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[04]  Various Artists, A Mad Decent Christmas

Hear Christmas standards as reimagined by Diplo’s crew including Diplo, DJ Snake, Gent & Jawns, Juyen Sebulba, Astronomar and Kennedy Jones. The eight-song compilation features some of the biggest tracks by artists on Diplo’s label, remixed by the artists themselves with a holiday twist, including a self-professed “reindeer stomper” called “RUDE OFF 2013″.

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[05]  Jacob Miller, Natty Christmas

If you think of the promise of a White Christmas as a threat and your idea of a real Christmas holiday is ditching wintry shores for sunnier climes —or if you just really like reggae —you’ll want to grab yourself a copy of Natty Christmas by Jacob Miller and Ray I. The album transports listeners to a Caribbean Christmas with tracks like “All I Want For Ismas” and “Natty No Santa Claus “

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[06]  Kool & The Gang, Kool For The Holidays

Make your Christmas funky with a new holiday album from Kool and The Gang, their first Christmas album after making music together for more than 50 years. The album is filled with standards like “Joy to the World’ and “The Little Drummer Boy” and great originals like “Home For The Holidays.” When Bernard and Smith wrote “Winter Wonderland” back in 1934, they probably never imagined the booty-shaking beats, funky guitar and big diva vocals in the song’s future.

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[07]  Various Artists, Oh Santa

This compilation from Yep-Roc Records has a little something for everyone at your holiday party. Whether you want to have the Apples in Stereo put you in a “Holiday Mood” or hear the retro stylings of Los Straitjackets or go to church with Reverend Horton Heat and the Legendary Shack Shakers, it’s all on this album filled with favorites, old and new.

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[08]  Weezer, Christmas with Weezer

While fans were surprised when Weezer decided to release a festive album, but Rivers Cuomo and the band managed to pull it off. The album is filled with classic carols infused with Weezer’s trademark fuzzy punk-pop. “O Come All Ye Faithful” never sounded so good.

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[09]  Various Artists, Icon: A Very Special Christmas

It’s been 26 years since the first A Very Special Christmas album with its iconic Keith Haring cover art was released. To commemorate the many years of  A Very Special Christmas, which was the brainchild of Jimmy Iovine of Interscope Records and American Idol, the latest iteration of the Special Olympics benefit album features some of the most popular songs of Christmas compilations past, including Aretha Franklin, Elvis Presley, Carrie Underwood, Tom Petty and John Lennon doing Christmas classics.

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MORE: Erasure’s Vince Clarke on Their First Christmas Album
MORE: 10 Christmas Songs For People Who Hate Christmas Songs

1 comments
ceoresult2013
ceoresult2013

I like Chris Rea’s “Driving home for Christmas”. It has a few lines with “Get my feet on holy ground”, though, not sure if that’s supposed to be a religious reference. From the context I’ve always assumed he simply meant “get my butt home”.

Also, I wanted to nominate Miss Montreal,  (which is actually a happy song). And while this song will be virtually unknown outside the Netherlands, so it doesn’t really fit the “well-known” criteria, I wanted to throw it into the mix anyway, just because it’s so positive.