I love Christmas music. I especially love Christmas music that is rocked out. Rock Christmas music is the perfect mixture of holiday spirit with insistent beats, encouraging family and friends to belt out holiday tunes and boogie down. Here are my top 10 rock Christmas songs and why you should download them immediately for festive listening this holiday season.
1. “12 Days of Christmas” – Relient K
The punk-influenced Christian band, Relient K, makes over this Christmas classic on their album Let It Snow Baby…Let It Reindeer. While reciting the traditional gifts in the “12 Days of Christmas,” the singer also diverges to note that receiving a “partridge in a pear tree” as a gift would be a terrible gift to get, which everyone who has heard the original song will agree with.
2. “Run, Run Rudolph” – Lynyrd Skynyrd
This version of Chuck Berry’s “Run Rudolph Run” sung by the American rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd can be found on their album Christmas Time Again. The faster pace rhythm puts a fresh spin on the 1958 recorded original that will liven up any Christmas bash.
3. “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus” – Cult of the Underdog
The alternative band, Cult of the Underdog, rocks an altered version of this Christmas song on their Christmas album A Not So Silent Night. The child in their version takes matters into his own hands when he catches his mom making out with Santa.
4. “Deck the Halls” – Relient K
Also found on their album Let It Snow Baby…Let It Reindeer, Relient K’s punk version of “Deck the Halls” is just as contagious as their version of “12 Days of Christmas.”
5. “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” – Weezer
Weezer, another alternative rock band, performs the classic Christmas song “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” with attitude on their album Christmas with Weezer.
6. “Kidnap the Sandy Claws” – Korn
This anti-Christmas song sung by Korn appears on TheJack 2 Pack (The Nightmare before Christmas) soundtrack. Its absurd lyrics will have every “Grinch” who hears it smiling in anticipation of the holiday season.
7. “Little Drummer Boy” – Audio Adrenaline
This version of “Little Drummer Boy” has a much faster drum beat than the original and includes a guitar solo. A Christian rock band, Audio Adrenaline performs their rock Christmas version on the compilation album The Shades of Christmas: Rock.
8. “Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24” – Trans-Siberian Orchestra
The version of the Christmas classic “Carol of the Bells” as performed by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, a rock orchestra, is on their album Christmas Eve and Other Stories. The instrumental rock version is performed using strings, guitars, keyboards, and drums and has a beauty and power to it that the sung versions do not have.
9. “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas” – Blink 182
On the compilation album A Santa Cause: It’s a Punk Rock Christmas, the song “I Won’t Be Home for Christmas” is filled with a punk band’s sense of humor. Another rock Christmas song to get those who are anti-Christmas into the holiday spirit, Blink 182 snaps on a group of carolers on Christmas Eve.
10. “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” – The Red West
Another track on the compilation album A Santa Cause: It’s a Punk Rock Christmas, “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” as performed by the alternative band The Red West has a darker feel, as compared to versions sung by children and choir groups, when heard. The alternate version is complimented by the rock sound and the meaning behind the Christmas classic is clearer to understand.