The holiday season is upon us and rather than listen to the same old holiday classics, we wanted to shake things up a little bit. We’ve compiled an eclectic mix of tracks that keep the holiday spirit alive - with a little bit of an alternative twist. Enjoy them on the drive home for the holidays or while sitting around the fire wearing our warmest sweaters and sipping on some of the finest festive mulled wine. Get ready to feel new kinds of December feelings because this isn’t just your average holiday playlist…
“Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” by Death Cab For Cutie
Ben Gibbard and company are well-known for their catchy riffs and poetic lyricism and ‘Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)’ is no exception. One for those cozy nights with a board game or two with friends.
“Christmas Time” by The Darkness
British glam-rock group, The Darkness, know how to have a bit of fun with their music, so brighten up those dark nights with their festive favorite, ‘Christmas Time’. Just try to not go full karaoke-style with the lip-synching on this one. Resistance is futile.
“I Wish It Could Be Christmas Today” by Julian Casablancas
Away from his world-renowned band, Julian Casablancas recorded ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Today’, a track based on a Saturday Night Live skit involving the likes of Jimmy Fallon. It’s a true rock’n’roll holiday song bound to get the heads banging in agreement with the chorus.
“Kindle A Flame in Her Heart” by Los Campesinos!
All the way from Cardiff, Wales, Los Campesinos! are well known for their fast-paced indie pop, but they’ve managed to tone things down (as much as they can) for the holidays with this seasonal hit.
“Just Like Christmas” by Low
Minnesota band, Low, released a Christmas album back in 1999. Settle down into the holidays with their true-to-form minimalist opening track, ‘Just Like Christmas’. It’s sentimental but upbeat.
“Wonderful Christmastime” by The Shins
We’ve got nothing against the great Paul McCartney and his original (in fact we tip our cap to the great man), but popular indie rockers The Shins put their own poppy touch to the all time classic, ‘Wonderful Christmastime’. One that’s sure to get you up on the dancefloor, even if it’s just a tiny corner by the tree.
“Boots” by The Killers
The Killers are back in the studio working on their fifth album, but in the meantime, let’s roll back the years with one of their many holiday singles. We’ve gone for the instant classic, ‘Boots’, from 2010. It’s a touching tribute to the traditions over the years and will ignite your own memories with lyrics like “cinnamon candles burning, snowball fights outside.”
“Winter Trees” by The Staves
The English acoustic trio know exactly how to set the winter mood with their folky style of harmony. Considering that Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon took it upon himself to record their latest album, they’re well-worth a listen. This song was made for contemplative winter drives and chill evenings.
“Christmas in the Room” by Sufjan Stevens
No winter would be complete without the banjo plucking, Illinois native, Sufjan Stevens, whose ‘Christmas In The Room’ comes from his very own Christmas record, ‘Songs for Christmas, Volume 8’. Definitely one to end the night with – it starts off slow but the build up is worth it.
Get ready for these to become your new classics for the cold season.
This playlist is also excellent to listen to while cooking (we happen to love our recipe for chicken stew flavored with craft beer).
Or add it these to your playlist while you make your own ornaments in our guide to simple holiday crafts.