So you’re still absorbing last week’s surprise of an all-country DLC pack? Well. We’re not through with surprises yet: This week we feature our first holiday pack, with three of the coolest seasonal songs around. And as a further present for whatever holiday you’re celebrating, we also have three more songs by a band we know you love.
The seasonal tunes first: Christmas songs were somewhat out of fashion in 1981, but that didn’t stop Billy Squier from sticking “Christmas is the Time to Say I Love You” on a B-side and getting a hit with it. Hailing from the same sessions that produced his breakthrough album Don’t Say No, this festive tune featured the mix of glam-rock and metal muscle that became Squier’s trademark. Are you ready to dare those high notes?
“Blue Christmas” has been a seasonal favorite since Elvis recorded it in 1957, but this spiffy new Pretenders version is right up to date: Chrissie Hynde puts on her best Elvis voice for the first half, and the tune shifts into full-throttle punk for the second. Collectors, take note: This new Pretenders track has not yet been released on CD or vinyl!
We don’t quite understand why great Hanukkah songs are in shorter supply, but we found a nifty one from the Barenaked Ladies. “Hanukkah Blessings” finds the Canadian popsters in a warm-hearted mood, and will be a good one to get your vocal harmonies in shape.
The Foo Fighters’ Dave Grohl is the unofficial king of Rock Band, appearing here in five different bands (the others: Nirvana, Tenacious D, Nine Inch Nails and Queens of the Stone Age). Lots of you rejoiced when we made The Colour & the Shape a full-album DLC, so here’s more where that came from. “This is a Call” opened up the first Foos album, when the band was still 100% Grohl, and the song was a perfect transition point for him, touching base with past friends and bandmates and clearing the deck to move on. By 2002’s “Times Like These” the Foos were established as a superstar band; this song was briefly used as a George W. Bush campaign song before Grohl told him to knock it off. Hailing from the two-CD epic In Your Honor, “DOA” was a hit in 2005 and proved that the Foos could do tough, arena-shaking rock with the best of ‘em.