When I posted about The Brantley Family Band and their annual Christmas albums a couple of weeks ago, I figured that it was only a matter of time before a new album from them would show up. Their new album was actually released yesterday, as they kindly pointed out in their comment on that post. The 2010 album has four songs, bringing their discography up to a whopping 32 songs, and is available from their Bandcamp page (where the track listing has been updated to include the).
The album leads off with a great cover of Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Xmas Time" and a characteristically zany version of "I'll Be Home for Christmas". A beautiful version of Vince Guaraldi's "Skating" (from A Charlie Brown Christmas) is up next; the dazzling, virtuoso guitar playing in this song easily places it in the upper echelon of the band's catalogue. The album concludes with a mindblowing version of "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch". Like last year's "Jingle Bell Rock", this one features a rapid fire series of genre changes, most of which I don't even have names for. I love the country verse in the middle of the song, which has a Johnny Cash feel, but it is the metal verses that bookend the song that have remained stuck in my head since the first time I heard the song. I was initially disappointed that the metal style wasn't used for the entire song, but the more I listen to it, the more awed I am by the way they deftly hop from genre to genre - I can't think of too many bands who could pull something like that off so convincingly. Happy listening!