Elvis Presley and Bing Crosby’s classic holiday tunes can get old pretty quickly. Why not exchange gifts this year to a hipper soundtrack? Below is a playlist of holiday songs — new ones and covers of the classics by contemporary indie artists.
Enjoy and merry Christmas, Hanukkah and/or Kwanzaa.
Old 97’s, “Wintertime in The City”
With a country twang, these rock ‘n’ rollers evoke the magic of spending a holiday season in the concrete jungle.
Lucius, “Christmas Time is Here”
Lucius sings this classic carol slowly and dreamy lending it a Twin Peaks feel.
Lola Kirke, “Cross You Off my List”
This track comes on like an innocent Christmas song but reveals a sweet and sultry twist as it goes on.
The Regrettes, “Marshmallow World”
These hardcore indie rockers will make you want to mosh around the Christmas tree with their take on the holiday classic.
Walk Off the Earth, “All I Want for Christmas Is You”
There’s nothing like sweet bubbly voices harmonizing for a Mariah Carey holiday classic.
J Fernandez, “Volcanic Winter”
There aren’t too many good holiday songs that don’t mention Christmas. This garage rock track is devoted to cold, not cheer, and rocks hard.
Sufjan Stevens, “It’s Christmas! Let’s Be Glad!”
Who knew the beloved folk/indie musician loved Christmas so much?
Courtney Barnett, “Boxing Day Blues”
Apparently Boxing Day is the day after Christmas (who knew?) and Barnett has something to say about it.
Pale Waves, “Last Christmas”
Here’s another awesome indie band covering a Christmas classic. This time it’s Wham!’s immortal ode to holiday heartbreak.
The Frights, “Christmas Everyday”
Indie rockers The Frights race through a lackluster Christmas season but pull through the disappointments with memories and laughter.
The Spook School, “Someone to Spend Christmas With”
The holidays can be a lonely time, so why not be lonely with The Spook School?
The Raveonettes, “The Christmas Song”
This hazy holiday song paints a beautiful snowy scene.
Yoke Lore, “Last Christmas”
They’re no Wham!, but they still crush this classic song. For those keeping count, yes, this is the second cover of “Last Christmas” on this playlist.
Heartless Bastards, “Blue Christmas”
And these guys are no Elvis, but they too crush this classic.
Julian Casablancas, “I Wish it Were Christmas Today”
The Strokes’ frontman’s Christmas song came out a while ago but this song remains an indie holiday classic.