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Maybe This Christmas Tree
Unwritten Law "Here's to the Mourning"
Kreator "Enemy of God"
Isidore (Brash)
In Battle "Welcome to the Battlefield"
Far "Water & Solutions"
Kukl "The Eye," "Holidays in Europe"
The Arcade Fire "Funeral"
Macha "Forget Tomorrow"
Authority Zero "Andiamo"
"21" by Adele is crowned the Best Selling Album of 2012 by iTunes
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Maybe This Christmas Tree

Maybe This ChristmasThe Maybe This Christmas series – named by Ron Sexsmith and now in its third year – have always brought excellent artists together to raise money for Toys For Tots. By covering beloved Holiday favorites or composing all new originals, past participants such as Coldplay, Sarah McLachlan, The Flaming Lips, Jimmy Eat World, and Rufus Wainwright have made the series that rare “compilation buy” each year. This year is no different, with excellent entries from some strong artists. Opening with The Polyphonic Spree doing John Lennon’s “Merry Xmas (War is Over),” the shivers down your spine from this one song is worth your bucks alone. Amazing how ageless the melody is. Great children’s background choir, too.

Death Cab For Cutie’s cover of The Ronettes’ “Christmas (Baby Please Come Home”) sounds as if it could’ve been an original from The Photo Album, Pedro The Lion gives standard “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day” a gentle and soothing makeover, and Lisa Loeb still sounds as sexy as a librarian-with-a-wild-streak on “Jingle Bells” (I’d love to see her remake Secretary but… ahem, that’s getting off topic).

Even The Raveonettes, whose albums define “boring repetition,” turn in an original as warm and comforting as Christmas hot chocolate. Seeing the names Jars Of Clay and Copeland on the track listing might send some fleeing, but trust me when I say that no one here turns in a weak performance. Copeland and Belasana (new project from The Juliana Theory frontman Brett Detar and ex-Sense Field guitarist Chris Evenson) might drip with syrup, but not enough that you need a towel afterward.

This is one compilation that’s above and beyond the category, not to mention a chest-warmer. Perfect for cold winter nights.

 

   

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