Wednesday, December 04, 2013

Various Artists: "Christmas Candy: the 2013 Zunior Holiday Album" (album review)

Each year Toronto-based digital music retailer Zunior releases a holiday album featuring artists who are available on their website.  Past themes have included covering The Ventures' Christmas record, and a cute Peanuts Christmas album.

This year, the label has gone in a completely different direction, featuring new original holiday tunes.

Many of the songs display a slightly askew sense of humour, which makes labeling these tunes as 'non-traditional' is a bit of an understatement.  Particularly sharp-witted is The Burning Hell's entry "Eight Days and Eight Nights".


The non-traditional theme is carried through in some of the musical styles employed on the record.  Dave Clark goes for a luau presentation with swaying ukulele number "So Lucky".  The warbly electronic arrangement on Ben Gunning's track is better than anything we've recently heard from The Flaming Lips.

The Dog Is Blue contribution, which inspires the album's title, is a typical dose of their charming indie pop.

As always, proceeds from the sale of the album will go to support the Daily Bread Food Bank.

Best tracks: "Candy Cane", "Eight Days and Eight Nights"

Track listing for Christmas Candy:
  • The Burning Hell - Eight Days and Eight Nights
  • Dave Clark - So Lucky 
  • Nick Zubeck - Jimu No Kyandi Keen 
  • Dog Is Blue - Candy Cane 
  • Ben Gunning - (Break Me Off a Piece of That) Polkagris 
  • The Ground - Candy Cane 
  • Baby Eagle - The First Born of Nature 
  • Nichol Robertson - (Like Taking) Candy Canes (From a Baby)
7.5/10

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