Wednesday, December 09, 2020

Thom Stone, WU&StS, tB&tB

As you may know, I'm updating a playlist on Spotify with all the new Christmas song I like, it just passed the 250 song mark. Later on, I will compile a Best of the Season-playlist for Some songs won't be on that playlist, 'cause they're not on Spotify. So far. Like that great Pom Poms track(EDIT: It's on the streaming services now!), the Grace Eden song. Or the JPE track. This 'Chrismeusse' album.

There's one album, that should be on any Best of the Season-collection. Tis not on Spotify. Tis by mr Thom Stone.

I think Jim/CU said it best when he reviewed 'Christmas at the End of the World' as 'the most poignant lockdown Christmas record of the season'. Thom, also active as Young War and maker of great Christmas songs before, just needed a guitar and some bells (of course) to make a deep impression with his songs. It's not a happy record, though I would not call it depressed. Slight optimism in a dark room, maybe. Eight songs, most of them quite short, with heavy lyrics. In the title track, Thom imagines that last Christmas ever (I guess), a beautiful feast totally in the spirit of the season:

Also extensively covered by Christmas Underground is the Wake Up & Smell the Sun album. Jim references to The Verve and Spiritualized, I'd say there's a distinct Tom Petty vibe goin' on. This is a rock album, as rock as rock can be. This sounds as it's could've been made in the late 70; all songs (yes ALL of them) are so absurdly fantastic that it's hard to imagine that they you have lived for years, decades even, without hearing these songs. The second you hear the title track, At Last Noel or this track below, they feel familiair. Like they've lighted up your Christmasses, heck, all seasons for, forever really. (Yes I featured WU&StS before, that is how good they are)

We did write earlier about The Bird & the Bee's special seasonal single 'Wishes', but haven't said anything about their very cool Christmas album that came out this October. TB&tB are a fave ever since their kinda brilliant Hall & Oates-cover album, and when they turn to Christmas songs, the blue eyed soul/yacht rock vibe stays. And it feels very, very right. How can you NOT love Inara George's voice, how does this Merry Merry track NOT get you in the slick xmas mode? Yes, there are covers on this album, and yes it's Dave from Foo Fighters in that (quite acceptable, I'd say) LDB-take. But this song, goshdarnit, so good: