Various We Wish You a Metal Xmas and a Headbanging New Year

Someone must have lost a bet. That’s the only excuse for hard rock/metal’s most notorious talents, such as Alice Cooper, Lemmy, Dio, Dave Grohl, Tony Iommi, Billy Gibbons and more, singing utter tripe such as "Santa Claws Is Coming To Town,” "Run Rudolph Run” and traditional numbers including "We Wish You A Merry Xmas” and "Deck The Halls.” While there’s obviously a great deal of tongue-in-cheek humour intended with these dozen pieces of holiday spirit, the shameless goofiness, lyrical twisting and half-hearted metalizing of such a flowery holiday just doesn’t work. Kudos do go to the team of Testament’s Chuck Billy, Anthrax’s Scott Ian and John Tempesta (Exodus, White Zombie, the Cult) for turning "Silent Night” into a death-meets-thrash metal dirge though. In a Metalocalypse kind of way, it’s rather hilarious. Otherwise, as with most seasonal albums, the only way to have a metal Xmas would be to avoid this steamer like the plague. (Eagle Rock)