2018, Music

X-Mass Death Jazz (2018) by Panzerballet

I grew up loving Christmas Carols, they were one of my favourite parts of Christmas outside of the gifts. I loved decorating our tree while listening to carols, it really put me in the holiday spirt.

But as I got older, and turned into a massive music snob and began to dislike Christmas music with basically two exceptions, “Fairytale of New York” and “Carol of the Bells.” There are other pieces of music I probably like, though I mostly don’t like the lyrics any more for whatever reason.

I say all this because I appreciate people who have no reverence for Christmas music like Panzerballet don’t. One of my joys of my teen years was listening to Twisted Christmas. The approach is different, of course, but I feel like the lack of reverence is similar.

On a side note, I have been meaning to listen to Panzerballet for some time, just haven’t gotten around to it yet.

These are very aggressively difficult “jazz metal” covers of Christmas carols and songs. There are some sacred cows here and some I don’t know off the top of my head. There might be one original (not entirely sure) and there are two versions of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” which is either unnecessary or great, depending on your feelings about either version.

I think these have to be approached with a sense of humour. Though I generally like music like this, without irony, this is Christmas music. It’s very rare that someone reinterprets Christmas music in a way that lasts, in part because more modern Christmas music is really quite subjective (you like what you heard as a child) and because some of the older songs really aren’t that interesting. I did not go into this expecting to hear something life-altering. I expected to hear something fun.

And I’d say this is fun, if you like this kind of stuff. I do understand how some people might find it repetitive but, again, we’re talking about Christmas music. Also, it’s always funny to me how people criticize music like this for using certain tropes, but don’t apply that lens to the stuff they like that is also very much relying on certain tropes (as all music does). Anyway…it’s fun, and I enjoyed myself.

If you don’t take this too seriously, you might enjoy it too.


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