Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Various - NEW WAVE XMAS (1998)

Electronic, Rock

New Wave, Synth-pop


01 The Three Wise Men - Thanks For Christmas (3:36)
02 Squeeze - Christmas Day (3:53)
03 The Pogues - Fairytale Of New York (4:32)
04 Los Lobos - Rudolph The Manic Reindeer (1:58)
05 Pretenders, The - 2000 Miles (3:37)
06 Throwing Muses - Santa Claus (3:48)
07 Miracle Legion - Little Drummer Boy (3:35)
08 Root Boy Slim & The Sex Change Band, With The Rootettes - Xmas At K-Mart (2:42)
09 David Bowie / Bing Crosby - Peace On Earth / Little Drummer Boy (2:39)
10 Captain Sensible - One Christmas Catalogue (3:59)
11 Timbuk 3 - All I Want For Christmas (3:24)
12 Wall Of Voodoo - Shouldn't Have Given Him A Gun For Christmas (4:05)
13 They Might Be Giants - Santa's Beard (1:54)
14 The Buzz Of Delight - Christmas (3:22)
15 Chris Stamey Group - Christmas Time (3:46)
16 Sun 60 - Mary Xmess (4:19)
17 Mono Puff - Careless Santa (2:16)

Link to download:

This seasonal adjunct to Rhino's 15-volume proto-alternative series of '80s favorites is characterized as much by sweetness as wigginess: check out XTC's "Thanks for Christmas" and Squeeze's "Christmas Day," the latter of which name-checks everything from tree lights to British comedy team Morecambe and Wise. Closest to true new-wave sound and spirit is They Might Be Giants' Farfisa-driven "Santa's Beard," but this eclectic mix's stretches generally succeed. Still, a couple of complaints: why a dreary "Little Drummer Boy" by Miracle Legion instead of the turbocharged one from Joan Jett's I Love Rock n' Roll? But it's churlish to complain about a record so well-meaning that it stacks up a blindingly good "Rudolph" by Los Lobos, a vintage single by Matthew Sweet's early Buzz of Delight, and "Fairytale of New York" by the Pogues and Kirsty MacColl--what a tearjerker. --Rickey Wright

"This is a good compilation of somewhat rare Christmas songs. It says "New Wave" in the title, but that's stretching it. I certainly wouldn't call Los Lobos, David Bowie or They Might Be Giants "New Wave". But there probably aren't enough Christmas songs by actual New Wave performers to fill a CD, so they had to stretch the definition a bit. Regardless of all that, this is an enjoyable Christmas CD. Any CD that features the great "Fairytale of New York" (my sister's favorite Christmas song) is worth purchasing. There are also great contributions by XTC, the Pretenders, Captain Sensible, They Might Be Giants and others. But not everything is great, alas. "Xmas at K-Mart" is pretty bad, in my opinion. But the good songs far outway the bad songs, so this is a worthwhile Christmas album."

"This is one of my favorite Christmas CDs! I play it over and over every year. Some of the rock n roll Christmas CDs seem to have the same songs, but this one has quite a few I haven't heard anywhere else. Christmas Day by Squeeze is probably my favorite, but I also love Santa's Beard by They Might be Giants, Santa Claus by Throwing Muses, Careless Santa by Mono Puff, and Mary XMess by Sun 60. And thrown in to round it out are some perennial favs like Peace on Earth/Little Drummer Boy by David Bowie and Bing Crosby, the great Fairytale of New York by the Pogues with the sadly deceased Kirsty MacColl, and 2000 Miles by the Pretenders. If you're looking for an alternative to tradition but only want to buy one or two CDs, this should definitely be one of them!"

"I would rate this X-Mas compilation a 5+ on the strength of track #10 alone. Captain Sensible's 1984 single, "One Christmas Catalogue" is one of the best pop songs I have ever heard. It's synth pop intermingled with overdubs of sound bytes from distant Christmas movies of the past, create a nostalgic overload. I first heard this song on the radio in December of 1995 while attending Brigham Young University. And up until just recently I was finally able to locate this CD and buy it. "One Christmas Catalogue" is a classic 80's hit that deserves much more airplay during the holidays. It isn't every day you stumble onto a song this good! This is a must have single for any 80's alternative pop fan!"


Blogger Captain Sensible said...

Thank you for your kind comments about 'One Christmas Catalog'.... this is my favourite of all the songs I recorded with synth-pop genius Tony Mansfield, in fact I never tire of playing it (is that vain or sad or whatever to play your own tunes, lol).

There have also been 2 wonderful cover versions - one a cute Japanese pop act with fragile female vocals / the other a USA grunge band. Both are magnificent and downloadable for free via my page on the Damned website:

I would like as many people as possible to hear this song - you never know when an ad agency or record label might be listening and get it to the top of the charts - where it rightfully belongs!!

best wishes - Captain Sensible

6:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hello Captain Sensible,

i do thank you for the lot of very good songs you wrote ,i always enjoy listening to your albums with Damned and solo too.
Thanx God im not alone with this,my friends always ask me for your and Damned albums:))

Thanks so much for the "One Christmas Catalog" versions,ive just downloaded them and they are really great, i will play them to my friends tomorrow on my new years party ,maybe -i hope!-as you told a record label will pick them up!

Happy New Year & all the best!


4:30 PM  

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