Indie

Alt-J Is Ready For A Christmas Party With Their Holiday Playlist

Despite being the fictional homeland of Ebenezer Scrooge, Christmas is actually quite a big deal in the UK. “Every year, my wife and I throw a big party at our house that involves group singing — a mix of traditional carols and cheesy festive pop songs,” Alt-J vocalist Joe Newman explains via email. But where many people are excited about giving or receiving gifts during the holiday season, Newman is actually more interested in the food and drink element of the holiday. “We generally try to cook something different every year — in 2021 it’s going to be a three bird roast comprising a pheasant inside a capon inside a goose. What more do you need?”

To celebrate the forthcoming release of Alt-J’s fourth studio album The Dream on February 11, Newman selected some of his favorite holiday music for the latest Uproxx Holiday Playlist to help ring in the time of the year and build upon the religious aspect of the season: “We will probably go to midnight mass on Christmas Eve. We tend to go to the pub beforehand and roll in just as the first carol starts. I can’t wait.”

Check out the full playlist, along with Newman’s explanations for his picks, down below.

The Waitresses – “Christmas Wrapping”

I suppose this is the ultimate hipster Christmas song, but I love it all the same. Even stripped of its festive content it’s a great tune.

The Darkness – Christmas Time (Don’t Let The Bells End)

A big, ballsy Yuletide rock song in the tradition of Slade et al. I think this is the first, last, and only great Christmas pop song of the 21st century (so far…).

Bo Selecta – “Proper Crimbo”

l like to put this song on at Christmas parties to annoy people — and amuse myself. It was only funny for about 5 minutes when it came out in 2003, which makes it all the more amusing now.

John Lennon and Yoko Ono – “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)”

This is always one of the loudest songs at our annual Christmas party — my friend Alec in particular really belts it out. You can split the room between people singing the two parts at the same time — it’s very advanced.

Mike Oldfield – “In Dulci Jubilo”

My wife introduced me to this song. It’s a wonderful combination of the sublime and the ridiculous – rather like Christmas itself. We like to put this one while we decorate the tree and dance around in a very silly manner.

Nat King Cole – “The Happiest Christmas Tree”

Utterly silly and adorable. Another one my wife got me into — I’d never heard this till I was in my mid 20s. Where had it been all my life? I sing it all year round now to make up for lost time.

The Sixteen – “Jesus Christ The Apple Tree (Elizabeth Poston)”

I learned to sing this when I was a chorister aged about 10. I’m not sure words can adequately describe its beauty. Light some candles and have a Christmas cry!

The Pogues – A Fairytale Of New York”

No Christmas is complete without this song. Just like most people’s Christmases it contains love, rage, music, excessive drinking, and, ultimately, reconciliation. I never get bored of it.

The Dream is out February 11 on Canvasback. Pre-order/pre-save here.

Alt-J is a Warner Music artist. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.

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