Album: X Christmas
Label: Tooth and Nail/BEC
Released: Oct 28 2008
Reviewer: Tyler Hess
Call me sentimental, call me a pushover, call me whatever you want, just don’t call me late for Christmas time. Let’s be real for just a minute. Lay down your indie cred and scene points for just a minute, please bare with me. Christmas songs are just different. If you are taking them too seriously, you’re probably missing the point. Christmas is many things to many people, and no this is not a dissertation on the holiday, but it is generally a time for friends and family and letting bitterness go and the music played is generally a genre unto itself in that it is usually some kind of mixture of lightheartedness and/or a time of reflection on what God did in sending His Son Jesus Christ to earth to save us from our sins. All of this should be considered when listening to a compilation of Christmas songs, which is why I was comforted that I enjoyed not only songs from some of my favorite bands, but also songs by some of my not so favorite bands. Say its cheesy, but I’m glad that Christmas can bring us to the point of remembering that although we have our differences, if we are in Christ then we have all things in common, especially Christ Himself.
Being a compilation, there isn’t much continuity to the album, so it does have a bit of a weird feel to it, trying to mix in hardcore, nu-metal, pop punk, rap, pop rock, whatever else into some kind of flow, so I’m going to try something different here and just throw out a one-liner for each song.
Thousand Foot Krutch – Jingle Bell Rock: I laughed out loud.
Hawk Nelson – Gloria: A little bit whiny, even for them.
The Almost – Little Drummer Boy: Oh, I see what you did there. Very fitting. First time I ever liked this song.
Switchfoot – Evergreen: Frustrates me that they are only this good sometimes, will make some miss Nirvana.
David Crowder Band – Feliz Navidad: cheesy song brings me back to high school Spanish class
Anberlin – Christmas, Baby Please Come Home: I think he’ll be okay. Nice song.
Kutless – Mary Did You Know: Perfect song choice, fits so well with his voice.
FM Static – Christmas Shoes: Best song on the album, almost had me crying.
Jars of Clay – Love Came Down At Christmas: well, few albums are perfect, sorry Jarheads, this isn’t doing it for me.
Project 86 – This Time Of Year: Video Game jokes aside, this is actually pretty cool, at least for one song, I don’t think I could listen to it for 45 minutes though.
Seventh Day Slumber – Do You Hear What I Hear: Pleasant, but forgettable.
Sanctus Real – Silent Night: Adequate, but not quite bold enough version of one of my favorite Christmas songs.
August Burns Red – Carol of the Bells: Sick instrumental track
KF-52 – It’s Christmas Time: Is that Alvin and the Chipmunks singing at the beginning?
Capital Lights – His Favorite Christmas Story: If you liked their album this year, which you should, you should like this.
Jaymes Reunion – Rockin Around The Christmas Tree: Yes, that IS my toe tapping. This is the song they always play at Christmas parties on TV.
Corey Crowder – Angels We Have Heard On High: Interesting take on a song I sung very differently in seventh grade choir.
In the end, there are a few overly goofy songs and a couple that don’t really captivate interest, this would be a fun CD for just about anyone’s collection for that special time of year. There are really only a couple songs on here that are absolute must haves for me, but the others hold their own enough that as far as Christmas albums are concerned this is a pretty fun one to start with.