It’s true that Christmas music is an age-old tradition, but it’s not all about swing jazz and easy listening. For decades, indie bands, punk groups and hip-hop outfits have given Bing Crosby a damn good kicking by wrestling with the holiday season clichés and offering us a cathartic counterpoint to all the merriment. Like hurtling down a snowy hillside on Santa’s sleigh, listening to the best alternative Christmas songs is one hell of a wild ride…
Listen to the best Christmas songs here, and check out our best alternative Christmas songs, below.
30: Corey Taylor: X-M@$ (2010)
Freeing himself from his iconic creepy masks, Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor threw his metalhead credentials to the wind and went solo with the gruff and breezy rocker X-M@$. Decrying the commercialisation of the holiday season, the song presents us with a foul-mouthed and humorous jibe at the “corporate jolly noise” that drives its cantankerous and Scrooge-like narrator to drink (“If I ain’t drunk then it ain’t Christmas/You know where to stick those jingle bells”). “I wrote this in honour of crotchety, drunken bastards who don’t know the difference between a Yuletide and a tool shed,” Taylor later said. Perfectly gift-wrapped for the curmudgeons among us, X-M@$ is a bah-humbug gem.