12 Indie Rock Christmas Songs That You'll Want To Listen To Year-Round
The season of break room cookie tins, aggressive mall parking lot drivers, and awkward office Secret Santa exchanges (a.k.a. The Annual Scented Candles For Everyone Party) is upon us. Like it or not, Christmastime is here. In full force. And it will be here until the 26th of the month. You know what that means, right? In a few weeks, it will no longer be acceptable to listen to Christmas music all day every day (well, until nextChristmas season, that is). *Wails like a Peanuts character.* Why am I caterwauling like Charlie Brown? Because there is so much Xmas music to listen to, but so little time, duh. Sure, there are some seasonal songs I'm always more than happy to say goodbye to (lookin' at you, "The Christmas Shoes") come the end of the month, but there are some tunes I am never ready to part with. And some of the tunes I hold near and dear to my heart are indie rock Xmas tunes.
Over the last couple of decades, a boatload of indie bands have gotten into the Christmas spirit and recorded holiday songs. And most of these holiday songs are pretty elfin' awesome. Here are some yuletide tracks—some covers, some originals— that I would be amped to listen to year-round.
“Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)” By Death Cab For Cutie
Originally sung by Darlene Love in 1963, the DCFC version can be found on 2004 compilation Maybe This Christmas Tree.
“I Heard The Bells On Christmas Day” By Pedro The Lion
Pedro the Lion's version of this 19th century poem-turned-Christmas song is my favorite version.
“Xmas Cake” By Rilo Kiley
Step aside, "The Christmas Shoes"; this Rilo Kiley original is one of the saddest Xmas tunes ever.
“Everything’s Gonna Be Cool This Christmas” By Eels
We should all be so lucky. This song appears not on an Xmas album, but on the B-side of the band's 1998 single "Cancer for the Cure."
“Winter Wonderland” By Radiohead
Radiohead's cover of the popular Xmas track gets weird with it in the best way.
“Blue Christmas” By Bright Eyes
AUGH be still my emo heart. Bright Eyes included their version of the Doye O'Dell song on 2013's A Christmas Album.
“Jingle Bell Rock” by Arcade Fire
This cover of "Jingle Bell Rock" sounds like it was recorded at a boozy eggnog-fueled bash, right? There's a reason for that: the Grammy-winning band recorded a Christmas EP at a party in 2001.
“I'll Be Home For Christmas” By Sufjan Stevens
“All I Want For Christmas” By The Yeah Yeah Yeahs
The Yeah Yeah Yeahs surprised fans with this holiday jam a few months before they dropped 2009 album It's Blitz!
“Wonderful Christmastime” By The Shins
The Shins' cover of Paul McCartney’s song appears on 2012 compilation Holidays Rule.
“Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas” By Cat Power
Cat Power's haunting rendition of the Meet Me In St. Louis masterpiece appeared in a 2013 Apple ad campaign.
“Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree” By She & Him
This version of Brenda Lee's classic appears on Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward's Xmas album, A Very She & Him Christmas.
And on that note, go have fun indie rockin' around the Christmas tree and have a emo New Year.