Welcome back to Five Spot. Every week, we'll examine a recent bit of music news and list five reasons why it's either brilliant or dumb-assed. Send tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Because God loves us: Weezer, one of our all-time favorite bands, has recorded six Christmas covers, the greatest musical holiday activity of all, to be used in an iPhone Guitar Hero-like video game, a game we totally own at. They've done this before ("Christmas Celebration," "Christmas Song") but doing more is clearly a good thing -nay, a Christmas miracle, and it's all kinds of Brilliant. With respect to John Denver and Bruce Springsteen, here are a few of our favorite would-be Christmas carolers.
Destiny's Child, "8 Days of Christmas"
Destiny's Child made two songs that did not make us want to close a door on our fingers: "No, No, No" ft Wyclef, a gummy R&B neck-roller that we may or may not have choreographed a less than masculine dance routine to, and "8 Days of Christmas." For our money, the three ladies were never more genuine in their gimme-gimme-gimme attitude than here.
Smashing Pumpkins, "Christmastime"
We implore you to name three artists more suited to make you feel like they're hinting at child molestation in a Christmas carol without ever saying anything that could even remotely be construed as such than old Billy C. It's like he took the blatant innuendo of Clarence Carter's "Back Door Santa" and did the exact opposite. It's genius, really.
Fountains of Wayne, "I Want An Alien For Christmas"
We thought it a good idea when Chris Collingwood asked for an alien for Christmas. We found out our father, a hardened metro bus driver and former military man, was not of the same mind when we echoed Collingwood's sentiments. To wit: "Don't be a dumb shit."
( Honorable mentions from F.o.W: "The Man In The Santa Suit," "Chanukah Under The Stars")
Eve 6, "Noel! Noel!"
Ah, Eve 6. We would've died for you at the height of your "Inside Out" power. When people argue that Eve 6 was a one-hit wonder (which happens more than you'd expect, somehow) we gleefully point to "Noel! Noel!". Its existence is almost as unforeseen as Incubus's "Get Your Dreidel On."
White Stripes, "Candy Cane Children"
They make the list only because they're perfectly color coordinated for Christmas and that kind of thing should always be taken into consideration.
Run DMC "Christmas In Hollis"
This song is to us what James Brown's "Santa Claus Go Straight To The Ghetto" was to our parents. And it seems really obvious now, but at the time we swear to God that we thought mama was in the kitchen cooking chicken and "collie" greens. Yeah, "collie," like the dog. We were terribly ignorant children.
Barenaked Ladies ft. Sarah McLachlan, "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"
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Chickity-China the Chinese chicken, we had a drum stick and this song was so, so horrible. We want to meet the guy that said, "Hey, you know what would just really capture the essence of Christmas? A Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan duet!" And if that's not bad enough, BNL actually had an entire holiday album. (Titled Barenaked for the Holidays, of course.)
Dashboard Confessional, "The Only Gift I Need"
We were going to make a joke about how we still have no idea why these guys are/were famous, but, we won't front, we downloaded "Saints and Sailors" a few months ago and liked it. (It was totally by accident, though. We thought we were downloading Houston rockers Sharks and Sailors.) And can someone please explain how this is not on Youtube?
-- Shea Serrano