VARIOUS ARTISTS – We Wish You A Metal Xmas And A Headbanging New Year

VARIOUS ARTISTS - We Wish You A Metal Xmas And A Headbanging New Year
  • 8/10
    VARIOUS ARTISTS - We Wish You A Metal Xmas And A Headbanging New Year - 8/10


Eagle Rock Entertainment
Release date: October 14, 2009

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It’s that time of year again – the stressful and non-forgiving holiday season. It comes around this time every year so why does it catch so many people off guard. Who knows but for whatever reason there’s no room for despair, there is hope in the air along with snowflakes. Most people get freaked out over what to buy for fellow co-workers, family members, friends, etc. The answer is quite simple really… music, and you can almost never go wrong, unless you pick a genre that the person dislikes or more unequivocally flat out hates. So there might be a little thought involved in the selection process after all but not that much considering the other option – trying to find almost anything else that would make a great gift, one that the other person would love… good luck!

This year marks the return of Armoury Records’ We Wish You A Metal Xmas and A Headbanging New Year, distributed by Eagle Rock Entertainment. Along with this great compilation of twelve Metal Xmas tunes, a 4-track, digital-only, special EP for the holiday season will also be released and distributed through Eagle Rock. The twelve track compilation is scheduled for an October 14, 2009 release while the latter is due out on November 24, 2009. Since both releases come from the same distributor, both CDs will be represented in this article to save time for everyone and who can’t use more time after all during this joyous time of year, so there you have it.

In this Who’s Who of music industry notables you have most of the timeless X-mas classics being covered. Here’s a quick list of what you will find on the 12-track compilation: “We Wish You A Merry Xmas,” “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town,” “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen,” “Little Drummer Boy,” “Silent Night,” “Silver Bells,” “Deck the Halls,” “Rocking Around the Xmas Tree,” and the infamous and forever favorite “Grandma Got Ran Over By A Reindeer.” The list isn’t complete with three tunes not being mentioned for whatever reason. Now if that isn’t enough to peak one’s curiosity as to how these wonderful classics might sound with a Metal twist attached to them, then here’s a list of the musicians who will be instrumental in bringing these tunes to life for all to hear: Both Bob & Bruce Kulick, Alice Cooper, John 5, Billy Sheehan, Vinny Appice, Lemmy, Ronnie James Dio, Tony Iommi, Rudy Sarzo, Dug Pinnick, George Lynch, Tim “Ripper” Owens, Steve Morse, Marco Mendoza, Scott Ian, Geoff Tate, James LoMenzo, Tony Franklin, Stephen Pearcy, Tracii Guns, Greg Bissonette, Joe Lynn Turner, Tommy Shaw, Steve Lukather, Jeff Scott Soto, Ray Luzier, Dave Grohl, and Billy F. Gibbons. For the most part, the musicians mentioned here are a good representation of who contributed in the making of this holiday CD. Just to be fair, it must be noted however that the list is not complete – it just makes more sense to mention the more recognizable musicians for obvious reasons. It should also be pointed out that there are individuals who appear more than once, in case that is important to know for whatever reason once again.

Now for the 4-track EP. Not only is it composed of three Xmas classics that were somehow omitted from the 12-track CD (perhaps Eagle Rock knew in advance that these would make the second cut considering they were being released approximately 5 weeks within each other), it adds a New Year’s classic (something the 12-track compilation completely overlooked even though there’s mention in the title ). No matter what language you choose, “Auld Lang Syne” is an infamous classic that will forever forge its place in time. This is the only track between both CDs that doesn’t incorporate the combination of musicians from different bands mentality in performing an individual song which in this case is performed solely by Girlschool. The X-mas tunes turn out to be “Frosty the Snowman,” “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” and “O Christmas Tree.” Some of the featured musicians found on this 4-track CD are: Steve “Lips” Kudlow, Doro Pesch, Michael Schenker, Tony Franklin, Frankie Banali and others.

Hopefully there aren’t any individuals who are looking for a song-by-song review in this article. To be abrupt and to the point, you won’t find it here… sorry. Most people find that boring, too lengthy for this type of article, time consuming (remember it’s that time of year again where time seems to be more precious than during any other period throughout the year), and there’s not enough space left thank God (just kidding…slightly).

So what should you do, buy these CDs or don’t buy these CDs? Perhaps a quick and to-the-point summary could put things into perspective and offer a helping hand.

These are great stocking stuffers for those last minute goodies one tends to look for when the chips are down and time (there it is again) is running out. You can also look at things this way – who doesn’t like music, especially X-mas tunes during the holidays? Just make sure in this case that the person receiving these wonderful items are fans of Metal or at least like their music slightly hard. There are some real good tunes on here and some will be shockers because they are that good. Let’s not ruin the surprise – you’ll have to listen for yourself and be ready to be entertained…at least for 67 minutes if you combine the two discs.


  • George Fustos

    George was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He has engineering degrees in Chemical and Electrical Engineering. He favors Metal, Rock, Hard Rock, Classic Rock, Blues, and even some Jazz and Motown (depending on the tune). He used to dabble with the bass quite some time ago. His most influential bassists are Jaco, Billy Sheehan, Stu Hamm, Geddy Lee, and John Entwistle (RIP Ox). Band-wise he's really into Rush, Tool, early Metallica, Pink Floyd (including Waters and Gilmour as solo artists), The Who, Iced Earth, Iron Maiden, Halford, Joe Satriani, certain Judas Priest, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Albert Collins (Blues guitarist), Motörhead, and a German band called Skew Siskin that Lemmy says in an interview as being "the best band out there today."

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