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Have a Merry Metal Christmas

Rob HalfordOn Christmas Eve, with all the stores and restaurants closed (except Chinese restaurants, of course) and all the TV channels broadcasting lame holiday specials, what could be more heartwarming than metal? Gorgoroth and Cephalic Carnage are fine, but over the next two days we recommend you check out some holiday songs recorded especially for the season.

Of course, there’s Rob Halford‘s new Christmas album, ‘Halford III — Winter Songs,’ which features metal versions of timeless classics like ‘Oh Holy Night’ and ‘Come All Ye Faithful,’ as well as ripping originals such as ‘Get Into the Spirit’ and ‘When Christmas Comes for Everyone.’

There’s also ‘We Wish You a Metal Xmas … and a Headbanging New Year,’ which includes a very doomy version of ‘God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen’ recorded by Heaven & Hell members Ronnie James Dio and Tony Iommi along with former Quiet Riot bassist Rudy Sarzo and drummer Simon Wright (ex-Dio, AC/DC).

And on a less serious (or at least less tuneful) note, there’s Testament frontman Chuck Billy growling ‘Silent Night’ alongside Anthrax guitarist Scott Ian, Shadows Fall guitarist Jon Donais, Queensrÿche belter Geoff Tate, drummer John Tempesta (ex-Rob Zombie, Exodus) and others.

For a more faithful version of the song, check out Manowar vocalist Eric Adams crooning alongside delicate guitar plucks, angelic background harmonies and weeping strings before the song builds into a climax of bristling guitars and clanging bells.

If you want to rip off Santa’s head and vomit down his neck, dig into Tortured Conscious‘ demented version of ‘Little Drummer Boy’ from the album ‘A Brutal Christmas: The Season in Chaos.’

Around this time of year, we’re less into blood and more into snow, so we’re particularly fond of Twisted Sister‘s ‘A Twisted Christmas,’ which features a chugging version of the holiday favorite ‘White Christmas,’ as well as a rockin’ version of ‘I’ll Be Home for Christmas’ with special guest Lita Ford, who probably still looks pretty bad-ass dressed as Mrs. Claus.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night.

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