Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas from ApeBlog and Sufjan

If you're looking for a new Christmas soundtrack, I highly recommend Sufjan Stevens' Songs for Christmas. The set of 5 EPs comes nicely packaged in a Christmas box with a booklet that includes short stories by Sufjan and Rick Moody, a poster, and stickers. Since 2001, Sufjan has recorded a Christmas EP each year, and he was adamant that the 5 EPs should be sold as a complete set. There are quite a few original songs that are worth a listen, such as "Christmas in July", "Get Behind Me, Santa", "That Was The Worst Christmas Ever", and "Did I Make You Cry On Christmas Day? (Well, You Deserved It)". The moods swing from contemplative and sad to reverent and spiritual to giddy sugar-highs. Some of his interpretations of traditional carols aren't particularly interesting or fresh, and I think the box set could have benefited from some paring down. But, still, the whole package makes for pleasant background music that can make any extended dysfunctional family gathering or long sleigh trip to Grandma's a lot more pleasant.

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