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Monster Ballads: Xmas

monsterballad.jpgI've said it before and I'll say it again: I hate Christmas music. Still, I agreed to give Monster Ballads: Xmas (2007, Razor & Tie) a fair shot and I have to admit I actually enjoy most of the songs included on the compilation.

The track list looks like this: 





Jingle Bells - Skid Row
Happy Christmas  (War is Over)  -  Winger
Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas - Jani Lane
I'll Be Home for Christmas - Twisted Sister and Lita Ford
White Christmas - Queensryche
Run Rudolph Run - L.A. Guns
Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree - Firehouse
Naughty Naughty Christmas - Danger Danger
Blue Christmas - Tom Keifer of Cinderella
Jingle Bell Rock - Nelson
Silent Night - Faster Pussycat
Santa Claus is Coming to Town - Dokken
Happy Holiday - Enuff Z'Nuff
Winter Wonderland - Stryper
Christmas Love - Billy Idol

Winger, L.A. Guns and Danger Danger provide the three stand-out performances on this release. To be clear, the L.A. Guns featured on this album is fronted by Phil Lewis. His voice still sounds great, but a little older than the "Ballad of Jayne" days.

Danger Danger pay homage to their hit "Naughty Naughty" with a fun Christmas tune that I might actually want to give a spin, in say, July. Not many Christmas songs are glam, but leave it to Danger Danger to improve upon the genre. Check out these lyrics:

“My babies always been the given kind but when she tells me she's my present and she blows my mind/
I can't wait but I'm gonna' unwrap her slow/
Oh yeah we're gonna have a ball/
And we'd like to wish you all/
A naughty naughty Christmas and a dirty dirty new year.”

See, I told you "Naughty Naughty Christmas" is one hell of a glam tune.

Kip Winger's voice is amazing on the John Lennon remake. The version is pretty true to the original with a few glam tweaks here and there.

According to iTunes, Skid Row's "Jingle Bells" is the most downloaded track on this album. I'm not sure when the song was recorded, but I can tell you it features Johnny Solinger on vocals. The version is good, but definitely not the best on the album. Perhaps it's the universal appeal of "Jingle Bells" that is helping Skid Row?

Faster Pussycat wins the award for the most unique Christmas carol. Taime Downe sings "Silent Night" with a glam/industrial bent. I suppose it's the only way "Silent Night" will be ever be played in a dance club.

The other song I really enjoy on Monster Ballads: Xmas is "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" by Firehouse.  The band who brought you "Don't Treat Me Bad" takes a lot of crap from music snobs but continue to make some really great music. On "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree," the band sound like they are having a great time.They even change the lyrics toward the end of the track to fit a Metal theme. There's nothing better than a head banging holiday I suppose.

Here's the video for Dokken performing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town."

Monster Ballads on Myspace

Reader Comments (11)

Why do Nelson keep appearing on these compilations ?
December 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChristian Graus
I have to get this CD..Bring back is a great site..because it is 100% dedicated to the music we love..GREAT JOB ALLYSON!!! \m/\m/
December 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJoe
I am going to review this one at my blog next week. I need to give it another listen first though. My initial thought is that it's a bit of a mixed bag.
December 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMetal Mark
Good review. I have been thinking about picking this up, but I still don't know if I'm going to...
December 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenteraXe mAn
This cd is good, but not near as good as the "we wish you a hairy christmas" compilation that came out a couple years back.
December 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Ozz
I love Tom Keifer's version of "Blue Christmas"! It's awesome!
December 22, 2007 | Unregistered Commentersixx6sixx
love the dokken vid too bad so short, its like dream warriors meets xmas i love it
December 22, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterglam rocker archie
i just picked this up a few days ago its pretty intense. i didnt know it wasnt sebastion on the jingle bells cover no wonder imo it sounded so bad. IMO he sounds like if sebastion shot his voice completely.
December 22, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterdirty angel
I reviewed the album at my site:

Overall, I liked everything on the record but the Faster Pussycat song was a complete waste of time, totally awful! Skid Row's 'Jingle Bells' was OK but the more I listen to it the more I don't like it.

Best performance to Queensryche.

Heavy Metal Addiction
We listened to it today - honorable mention to Winger (yes I know they're my favorite band, but their song isn't my favorite.). I think Nelson did the best job. Martian Manhunter aka Husband Creature did not like Queensryche's song - Direct quote from him was "Ow my ears are bleeding." (I think Tate took it too high vocally.).

Now back to 'normal' music...sigh...

Chessie >^..^<
December 25, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterChessie
Love your review Allyson and agree with it a lot. I believe that Tom Keifer's version on "Blue Christmas" is the highlight of the CD. Very under-rated.
December 26, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterfletch

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