It's that time of year again, when radio stations, stores, and restaurants play holiday music 24/7 until it's impossible to maintain that jovial holiday spirit. No disrespect to Perry Como and Bing Crosby, but sometimes one can only handle so much orchestral accompaniment to the same carols. Thankfully, rock musicians have noticed that there is only about 30 holiday covers that get most of the airplay, so they took it upon themselves to inject the yuletide carols with a little bit of headbanging. Here are five rock/metal holiday songs, that are sure to sway you to the badder side of the 'naughty or nice' list.
1. "Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)" by U2- a cover of the Darlene Love classic, the song was released in 1987, when U2 was still riding the tidal wave that was The Joshua Tree. The band started playing with it during a sound check in July, and the crowd loved their concert version so much that Love even sang background vocals on the single.
2. "Merry Christmas (I Don't Want To Fight Tonight)" by The Ramones- Originally released as a B-side in 1987, the song was the closing number on 1989's Brain Drain. For those people that thought the Ramones could never be sentimental and sing about the holiday spirit, this number changed their opinions rather quickly.
3. "Deck The Halls" by Twisted Sister- No one would ever have guessed that the guys that released "We're Not Gonna Take It" and "I Wanna Rock" would eventually have an annual Christmas Extravaganza tour. However, that's just what Dee Snider and his boys do, thanks in large part to their hit version of "Deck the Halls," off the 2007 album A Twisted Christmas.
4. "No Presents For Christmas" by King Diamond- For those off us that really want to headbang during the holidays, this thrash song is right up your alley. Released on Christmas 1985, it was the first new music by King Diamond after the demise of Mercyful Fate. The guitar solos are some of the most metal work you'll hear in December, and the 8-and-a-half minute tune keeps you rocking the whole way.
5. "Run Rudolph Run" by Lemmy Kilmister- It's amazing to hear how Lemmy uses Chuck Berry's original 1950s style in this new cover. Not to mention the fact that Dave Grohl and Billy Gibbons are also involved in the song? You don't have to tell me twice.
**For those of you clamoring for Guns N Roses' version of "White Christmas," take a good listen at that song again: That's not Axl's voice, Slash's guitar, or anything else that resembles the Gunners.