Sunday, 13 December 2015

BRIAN SETZER ORCHESTRA - CHRISTMAS ALBUM REVIEW

Brian Setzer Orchestra - Rockin' Rudolph (Surfdog Records) 
The Brian Setzer Orchestra - Rockin' Rudolph

Release Date: Out Now

It takes a real dedication to the festive spirit to release as many Christmas tunes as Brian Setzer and his orchestra have pumped out over the years. This latest collection is a master class of big band, Jazz and Swing music applied to some classic (and not so classic) Christmas tunes, so slip your best brothel creepers and let's dance. 'Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree' is up first with a sax fuelled version that has a screaming guitar solo and if you're not jiving by the time this is through then you're a Grinch for sure. I have to admit that 'Yabba Dabba Yuletide' is a new one on me but pretty much everybody knows the Flintstones theme tune so just hum that, stick some festive phrases in and you're golden.

The smooth 'Most Wonderful Time Of The Year' is perfect for that mid tempo dance at the work party while 'Rockabilly Rudolph' is like the theme from some subversive 70s cop show with the classic Rudolph lyrics given a slightly edgier feel. The slapping bass and scit-scat drums on 'Here Comes Santa Claus' give new energy to an old favourite before 'Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas' out croons Buble and out swoons Seth McFarlane. This is the perfect music to crack on in the kitchen on Christmas day when things really get cooking and you'll be rattling those pots and pans before you know it. Keeping the party going with 'Swingin' Joy' and then 'Carol Of The Bells' there is a definite sense of traditionalism here but given a light and swinging, slapping and swooning make over.

'Little Jack Frost' ups the sex appeal a little with more brass and some soulful female vocals and then we're treated to an absolutely huge version of 'Hark! The Herald Angels Sing' which should be on the opening credits to some big budget Christmas special on American TV. An end-of-a-perfect-evening slow dance version of 'O Little Town Of Bethlehem' and an extended version of 'Yabba Dabba Yuletide' finish things off and if, by now, you're not half cut on festive cheer and dancing with the first relative you can drag in to the kitchen then something is very, very wrong with you.

More information: https://www.facebook.com/briansetzerofficial/?fref=ts

Live Dates:

14th December - Fox Tucson Theatre, Tucson
15th December - Celebrity Theatre, Phoenix
18th December - Microsoft Theatre, Los Angeles
19th December - Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, Indio
20th December - Pechanga Entertainment Centre, Temecula
22nd December - Fox Theatre, Bakersfield
23rd December - Wells Fargo Centre for the Arts, Santa Rosa
24th December - The Warfield, San Francisco
26th December - Martin Woldson Theatre at the Fox, Spokane
27th December - Benaroya Concert Hall, Seattle

29th December - Grey Eagle Resort and Casino, Calgary

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