Top 10 Non-Traditional Christmas Songs
"Baby Jesus, born to rock..."
Amidst the time of year when we're bombarded with cliché holiday tunes and trite Christmas-carol covers, Rocks Off will now take time to appreciate a few original nontraditional takes on festive songs. Whether they're dismal adaptations of holiday malaise, tales of comic relief, or simply uncharacteristic of the artist, we value anything that successfully breaks up the monotony of "Jingle Bells."
10. Frightened Rabbit, "It's Christmas So We'll Stop": Front man Scott Hutchison delivers rare optimism on this 2008 track, displaying a promising hope for the holiday season. "Forget the names I called you on Christmas Eve/ In fact forget the entire year... I'll protect you, I promise I will/ And the rest of our lives will be just like Christmas."
9. Sufjan Stevens, "That Was the Worst Christmas Ever": A subdued recount of a less-than-perfect Christmas, Stevens sings "Our father yells, throwing the gifts in the wood stove... Silent night / Holy night... Nothing feels right." Leave it to Sufjan to temper holiday cheer with lyrics so depressing.
8. Kanye West, "Christmas in Harlem": Released just earlier this week, this holiday track features "Cam, Vado, Jimmy, Pusha, Big Sean, Cyhi, Teyana Taylor and Musiq" (according to Kanye's Twitter). With a whopping ten verses, Kanye and co. cover myriad yuletide topics, including trips to the mall and some adult-themed analogies of egg nog and hot chocolate.
7. Ryan Adams, "Hey Parker, it's Christmas": Inspired by his then-girlfriend, actress Parker Posey, Adams delivers quite the juxtaposition on this 2003 B-side. "Ring-a-ding-ding, sleigh bells ring," he sings, against an otherwise gloomy piano-driven melody.
6. Flaming Lips, "Christmas at the Zoo": This Clouds Taste Metallic track is categorical Flaming Lips: Equal parts weird and likable. "There wasn't any snow on Christmas Eve / I knew what I should do / I thought I'd free the animals all locked up at the zoo," Wayne Coyne sings, as he's joined by a festive sleigh bell accompaniment.