Album: Merry Axemas

Artist: Various

Tis’ the season to be inundated with a stocking full of crappy Christmas music. In the interest of sanity preservation, I’d like to spend the next few weeks here on SF Signal recommending some less-cliched Christmas music that may be appealing to the Sci-Fi Fan.


Over on Twitter this week, myself and several members of the Science Fiction community (most notably authors Greg Van Eekhout and Patrick Hester) entered into a dialog about Christmas music. Several excellent suggestions were put forth, including recordings by Mannheim Steamroller and The Brian Setzer Orchestra. The album that I am recommending today is a compilation put out in 1997.

Merry Axemas is a collection of holiday themed instrumental rock tunes by some of the best guitarists to ever wield the aforementioned metaphorical axe.

Joe Satriani, the Silver Surfer obsessed guitar wizard, trips out on a powerfully cosmic version of “Silent Night” that transforms from a holiday meditation into a spacey jam.

The always mystical Steve Vai contributes a soaring, emotional reading of Vince Guaraldi’s “Christmas Time is Here” from the Charlie Brown Christmas Special.

Eric Johnson (“Cliffs of Dover”) and Steve Morse (Kansas, Deep Purple) supply sophisticated, melodic renditions of “The First Nowell” and “Joy to the World”.

Finally, Rush’s Alex Lifeson checks in with tasteful take on “The Little Drummer Boy” that is ironically light on drums.

If you’re a fan of rockin’, instrumental guitar music than picking up Merry Axemas is a no-brainer.

Your turn: What is your favorite Christmas album?

Who is your favorite guitarist?

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