Tagged: Christmas

Christmas Smackdown: James Urbaniak vs. Coldplay

Rusty Venture (aka James Urbaniak)

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cmartinI know this statement is going to break (and indeed parboil) the heart of one of my dearest friends, but I can stay in the closet no longer: I like Coldplay. They’re not my favorite band in the world (not while Imperial Stars are still out there, anyway), but I like ‘em. I grew up in the earnest 80s. I like big, soaring anthems, pompous intentions and singalong choruses. They’re The Alarm with better hair. If U2 was my heroin, Coldplay is my generic Wal-Mart arena-rock methadone. And I ain’t kickin’ this soapy corporate skag for nobody.

James Urbaniak, as anybody knows, is the dean of American character actors. “Urbo”, as his friends playfully call him, stars in the best show on television, The Venture Bros, and has built a well-respected and very entertaining career playing weirdos, perverts, savants, and pizza delivery gentlemen of surprising depth and courage. He’s had a daring, original career. He is the anti-Coldplay. People copy Urbo. Urbo does not copy people.

These two titans now square off in that most cutthroat of artistic arenas: the Christmas Single. Who will triumph? TWO SONGS ENTER!

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Most People Call Them Green Onions But They’re Really Scallions

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Who don’t love Christmas?  Most of us, but as Wonderlick said, it’s nice to pretend.  Here’s another hypothetical mix CD, and it’s all Christmas Songs, since it’s getting to be that time of year again (unless you’re reading this later, like, in January. In which case, well, I guess it’s still getting to be that time of year again, just much, much more slowly.), and there’s a lot of awful Christmas records out, so perhaps there will be some on here that people can actually enjoy, huh? (Also: I think there should be a moratorium on Xmas Mix CDs with the Pogues‘ “Fairytale Of New York”, just because it’s basically the One Good Song Everyone Knows About Already. Though it is basically my favorite Xmas song ever.)

The title comes from a piece not actually on here:  “Yulenet (Christmas Dragnet)” by Stan Freberg.  Honestly that and his single “Green Chri$tma$” are both must-hear records, so you should seek them out right away.  They’re both wonderful.
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Interview: Fred Schneider

superionsIn 1976, Freddy “Boom Boom” Schneider busted straight outta Athens, GA with a dollar in his pocket and a dream: to bust mad stentorian rhymes about wild planets, private Idahos and monsters in his pants. Over a 30-plus year career, Schneider has carved out enough fantastical, transgressional “Southern grotesques” to make him the New Wave acid bastard love child of Faulkner and Flannery O’Connor. Now he’s touching the holidays inappropriately with his new band The Superions and their album Destination…Christmas! The inexplicably illeistic Cait Brennan spoke with Schneider and discovered that the “Cancerian from New Jersey” still likes collecting records and exploring the cave of the unknown.
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