Yeah, yeah, I know it’s only November but as the superstores quickly chuck the Halloween costumes in the bin and plough the shelves full of mince pies and tinsel, those power pop legends Cheap Trick have released a Christmas album. Repeat, Cheap Trick have released a Christmas album!
The band of misfits are no strangers to a festive ditty or two as they’ve previously reworked I Want You To Want Me and Come On, Come On for Christmas kicks and giggles. 12-string bass man Tom Petersson said in July this year that Christmas Christmas was recorded two months previous. Just like Slade laying down Merry Xmas Everybody in New York in the summer of ‘73, I bet Cheap Trick could not stop pissing themselves with laughter in the studio.
The fun shows on the nine covers they gleefully tackle on this twelve track album. Do they deserve serious critique? Hell no! It’s pointless ripping apart and overanalysing; the LP is called Christmas Christmas for Christ’s sake! The covers range from the cool of the Ramones’ Merry Christmas (I Don’t Want To Fight Tonight) to the cheese of Harry Nilsson‘s Remember Christmas. As big Roy Wood fans Cheap Trick also pay homage with Wizzard’s I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day.
In amongst the musical merriment of yesteryear lay three Cheap Trick originals including the title track and Our Father of Life, where Robin Zander turns into a carol singer at your front door. Merry Christmas Darlings is full of pomp with a mid breakdown so the kids can open their presents. Things kick back in so Noddy Holder can get drunk and then fall asleep during the Queen’s Speech. If we were in the golden 70s age of British glam rock, this song would’ve been all over Top of the Pops and we’d all be sick of it by now!
The Pledge page is still open if the compact disc isn’t enough for you. On offer are Cheap Trick tree ornaments, stockings, sweaters and more. I’m guessing Rick Nielsen wears all of the above whilst roasting his chestnuts on an open fire.
If you’re bored of your Nan spinning Bing Crosby on the turntable or sick of Wham! and East 17 on the radio at work, get some rock in your stocking with Cheap Trick. It’s guaranteed to force a smile out of the stingiest of Scrooges. I’m giving Shakin’ Stevens a miss this year in favour of jingling my bell to the greatest power poppers of all time. Ginge Knievil