A Kool Kat Kristmas Vol. 3

“A Kool Kat Kristmas Vol. 3” is available for purchase from Kool Kat Musik.

Christmas albums are a tough proposition. There are so many to choose from, so many “classics” that people return to, year after year, like a favorite Winter sweater to bring comfort against the cold. How do you do something new that will connect with listeners and finds its own unique place in the pantheon of what’s already available?

Simply stated, “A Kool Kat Kristmas Vol. 3” is one of the most thoughtfully assembled and heartfelt collections I’ve heard to date. It runs the gamut of holiday emotions, celebrating the Winter Wonderland while not shying away from the darker aspects of the season. It’s honest and real and a wonderful addition to any Christmas albums you may already own.

Everet Almond’s “Have A Very Very Very Merry Christmas” is a sprightly yuletide romp that opens the album joyous note. It’s got it all…pristine backing vocals, propulsive rhythm, a gem.

The Decibels’ “Christmas Wish” is another burner. with a wonderful, positive pop / garage gallop that celebrates the reason for the season. A cool Byrds-ish guitar solo is the icing on the cake.

The Junior League’s “Holiday Bouquet” is a laid-back, reflective, acoustic-driven track that explores the bittersweet, wistful nature of the holidays.

The Season’s Greeters’ “Santa’s Leaving Town” is a fun rockabilly rave-up…”Well I’ve got a girl that’s really hot, got much more than her mother’s got…Just one thing that gives me pause…her old man is Santa Claus”…

Nick Frater’s “Christmas Is Cancelled” is lush, stately pop. “Christmas is cancelled if you don’t go back to sleep…” Wonderful Harrison-esque lead guitar graces the track, with bells adding a perfect accent.

Althanor’s “I Remember You On Christmas” was also released as a Big Stir Digital Single, and is a sweet, innocent remembrance of a high school sweetheart and “our first Christmas.”

Richard Turgeon’s “Skippin’ Christmas” takes a sly look at the downside of the holidays for some…”And all this family time, is makin’ me lose my mind…this year I’m skipping Christmas time…”

The Stan Laurels’ “Noche Buena” has a wonderful melody, a Brian Wilson / Paul McCartney feel, perfectly nuanced vocals…a light, airy feel and a beautifully composed and arranged track.

Stephen’s Ruin’s “A Child’s Christmas” is another power pop sprint that celebrated the wonder and anticipation of Christmas.

Emperor Penguins’ “Lonesome Cowboy” is a sublime cowpoke ramble through Christmas “under prairie stars.” Coming in as the tenth track, it adds such a brilliant tone and texture to the tracks that precede it, a guaranteed smile on your face.

Tammy & The Rockets’ “December Snow” steers the sleigh back into power pop territory…”December snow, all alone, gravity is draggin’ me down, it’s draggin’ me down…”

Ed Ryan’s “Noel (You’ve Gotta Sing)” begins with a little Beatles “Please Please Me” styled blast and is another tuneful, joy-filled standout.

Steven Somerset’s Shadow Kabinet closes the album with “Compliments of the Season,” an elegiac ode to the “strange times we live in.”

You’ll find Kool Kat label head Ray Gianchetti’s notes for the album below. I’d unhesitatingly call this album one of the “must have” releases of 2019.