It’s December. The Christmas music is already on the radio and will be for the rest of the season. There are a few tracks you might not typically hear this time of year that still express the feelings of the holiday season. We’ve compiled a few of them in this playlist entitled simply “Alternative Holiday.” Contained in it you will find tracks from some notable indie artists. Some of them are covers, others are originals, but all of them have that wintery Christmastime feel to them.
1. Snow and Lights – Explosions in the Sky
We start with an instrumental track. Explosions is the Sky are known for their beautiful and motivational soundtrack work, but this gem off their 2000 album “How Strange, Innocence” is a perfect way to set the mood for the snowy days to come.
2. A Change at Christmas [Say it Aint So] – The Flaming Lips
Your dose of weird for this playlist. For a Flaming Lips song this one is surprisingly controlled. It’s a pretty number with a spacey vibe that can calm a room. Just drift off and enjoy this one.
3. The First Song – Band of Horses
We’ll stick with the calm vibe here. This one has a nice, deliberate pace and those echoed vocals that everyone expects from Band of Horses. This is the song that fits right in with sitting around the fireplace while snow falls outside.
4. Xmas Curtain – My Morning Jacket
You have to love the psychedelia of this track, but it’s not overdone. It has just the right amount. And those harmonies? More please.
5. Winter’s Heir – Sea Wolf
The song feels as wintery as the name implies. You imagine someone looking out a window at the sheets of snow covering the ground when you listen to this one. His singing just puts you at ease.
6. White Winter Hymnal – Fleet Foxes
This song is all about those beautiful choruses. They just catch you from the beginning and then suddenly you’re lost in the song. This is guaranteed to leave you in a good mood.
7. It’s Christmas so We’ll Stop (Choir Version) -The Pretend it’s December Choir
What embodies the season more than a choir? This is a nice choral arrangement of the track originally by Frightened Rabbit. It’s the kind of uplifting choral piece you’d expect to hear this time of year.
8. What are You Doing New Years Eve? – The Head and the Heart
Of course we needed a piano number. This duet performed by the Head and the Heart is a great track for sitting around and enjoying the company of friends and family. The singing is beautiful and so is the instrumentation.
9. I Believe in Santa Claus – Dr. Dog
A song about Santa? This wouldn’t be a holiday playlist without one. Dr. Dog adds the necessary indie flair to make this one interesting. Listen to it and feel the spirit of Christmas flow through you.
10. Wonderful Christmastime – The Shins
This seemed like a logical ending point. Take it from the Shins. Have a wonderful Christmastime.