With Just A Hint Of Mayhem

Music reviews, gig reviews, fun trivia and extra added random stuff!

Comfort And Joy – A Shiny Happy Christmas Compilation December 17, 2020

Comfort And Joy – A Shiny Happy Christmas Compilation is a beautiful new compilation of Christmas songs for the 21st century put together by those delightful and delectable elves over at Shiny Happy Records. It features 23 classy bands from across the globe and it really is a compilation that makes you feel good and eases you into a nicely chilled Yuletide spirit. Do I have a favourite track on here? Yes, but it has so far been different every time I have listened to it.

“Winter Time” by Denbaron is like something that might have featured on a Chrimbo version of the NME C-81 collection. The Phantom Handshakes sound like a side project from Clare Grogan at the height of Altered Images fame, and I am a huge fan of Clare, so I mean that in a really good way! Can you imagine an early 80s post punk, slightly pop infused band fronted by Jona Lewie? You can? then I think you will love the 100% feel good vibes of “Snowman” by Tampopo. Are there many great songs about games featured in cartoon series? I have no idea, but “Buy Me Bonestorm (Or Go To Hell)” by Teenage Angst is definitely in that category as I believe it is a song about a violent game that once featured in the Simpsons. If you like your Christmas covers shoegazey and very slightly smiley then the bravely named the Lousy Pop Group with their rather different take on “When Santa Got Stuck Up The Chimney” will definitely be your thing. Incidentally they might be a pop group, but they are not lousy in real life I suspect.

“Working On A Christmas Day” perfectly expresses the gloom I would feel if I had to work on a Christmas day. It also makes me want to hear more from the songs architects, Archaster. If any of the old classic kids TV shows featured an “out there” indie band it would probably be the originally, immaculately and wonderfully named Vegetablets. I can imagine “Christmas Dream” resonating over the closing credits for a Christmas edition of Trumpton. The Death Of Pop’s “Christmas In Suburbia” owes a small debt to Jonathan Richman and Damon Albarn, but it it also sounds very different and original too. There are a few covers on this record and perhaps the finest is a gorgeous lofi take on Wham’s Christmas classic “Last Christmas” by Teen Idles. My second favourite track on this fine collection is “December Girl” by the Suncharms which adds a sublime seasonal stamp to their magnificent chilled indie signatures. Regular readers will definitely be familiar with Suncharms! Currently my favourite song here is “Happy Xmas (Plague Is Over)” by the Fisherman And His Soul. Definitely a song for 2020 and frankly if Yuletide 2020 needed a Christmas compilation it needed this one!

Sadly I don’t have the time or space to mention every song and every artist, but here is the track list and the BandCamp list is below;

  1. The Skating Party – Brothers in Our World
  2. Day & Dream – December
  3. The Suncharms – December Girl
  4. Denbaron – Winter Time
  5. Phantom Handshakes – Winter Is Blue
  6. Red Go Cart – Winter Work
  7. Tampopo – Snowman
  8. Caramel Snow – Put Me On Your Wish List
  9. Teen Angst – Buy Me Bonestorm ( Or Go To Hell)
  10. Apple Orchard – One Christmas Catalogue
  11. The Lousy Pop Group – When Santa Got Stuck Up The Chimney
  12. Nixon – Silent Night
  13. Starry Eyed Cadet – Good Night
  14. Archaster – Working On a Christmas Day
  15. Subterfuge – Christmas Meadow
  16. H! – Christmas (Brighter Cover)
  17. Vegetablets – Christmas Dream
  18. 1Cinéma Lumière featuring Megumi Acorda- Under the Mistletoe
  19. The Death of Pop – Christmas In Suburbia
  20. Sushi Backpack – Christmas Lights
  21. Teen Idle – Last Christmas
  22. The Caraway – A Very Merry Christmas
  23. The Fisherman And His Soul – Happy Xmas (Plague is Over)

Click here to check out this ace collection on Bandcamp.

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