Friday, December 14, 2007

Merry Christmas from New Jersey

The Smithereens just released their first Christmas album.

Judging by the song samples on the above-linked site, the album is as secular as they come, but there are some fun surprises, including covers of the Who's "Christmas" song from "Tommy" and the Beatles rarity "Christmas Time Is Here Again."

Most impressive is that the Smithereens sound every bit as good as (and probably better than) I remember them from when I first saw them many Christmases ago at Greenwich Village's Bottom Line — December 7, 1984, to be exact. (I was a 16-year-old with a Brian Jones haircut, right, but passed for 21.) I can't think of any other still-extant band that's kept up its signature sound for so long and so well.

The album is also available from Smithereens guitarist Jim Babjak's online store.