CULTED SOUNDS: TEAM PLAYLIST, BUT MAKE IT FESTIVE
The scene is set. The gifts are wrapped. The wine is flowing. The one thing left to think about is the soundtrack to accompany your Christmas weekend.
We’ve got you. This year, CULTED Sounds brings you our team’s top seasonal sing-alongs to ensure that, yes, you will be the main character this Christmas. From an anti-holiday tune from Tyler the Creator to a cult classic from Destiny’s Child, this year the AUX cord (or bluetooth connection, let’s be honest) will lie firmly in your hands.
CHANCE THE RAPPER, JEREMIH, VALEE – ARE U LIVE
Written completely off the dome by the 3 rappers, ‘Are U Live’ is more trappy than your traditional christmas song. Released as part of Chance The Rapper and Jeremih’s joint Xmas tape ‘Merry Christmas Lil’ Mama’, the song uses playful christmassy bells that decorate an otherwise quite dark and trappy instrumental. That contrast in sounds is what makes this song so feel good. With largely ad libbed phrases and random interjections from the rappers, the song doesn’t take itself too seriously, and is a lighthearted way to inject christmas into trap music.
DESTINY’S CHILD, 8 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS
Destiny’s Child’s ‘8 Days of Christmas’ is the perfect song for fantasising what your SO has bought you this festive period… before they can disappoint. Listing poems, foot massages, Chloe shades, diamond belly rings, and more, this track sure does set the bar high – obviously Bey’s love language is gift receiving because her man’s gone above and beyond. Maybe sharing the track with your SO will provoke some last minute inspo? Or just make them realise how shallow you are. Either way, what’s the harm; it’s still a banging song!
TYLER, THE CREATOR – YOU’RE A MEAN ONE, MR. GRINCH
While this may not be a part of your usual Christmas playlist, this tune is certainly a banger if you’re a fan of Christmas movies like me.
“You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” is originally a Christmas song written by Dr. Seuss and originally performed by Thurl Ravenscroft in the 1966 animated television special ‘How the Grinch Stole Christmas’. The song was later covered by Tyler, The Creator for the 2018 album, “A Charlie Brown Christmas (Deluxe Edition)”. One of the reasons this song is one of my favourite Christmas tunes is because of its catchy and memorable melody, combined with clever and humorous lyrics that perfectly capture the Grinch’s mischievous and grumpy character. Tyler, The Creator’s version is so good for its modern and upbeat production, giving the song a fresh and modern twist while still retaining the spirit and charm of the original.
THE ROLLING STONES – YOU CAN’T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT
Okay, hear me out – I know that this isn’t technically a Christmas song. But when I hear the sound of those super-British, angelic-sounding, carol-singing children at the start of the track, my cold heart is warmed.
Written and released as part of The Rolling Stones’ legendary album ‘Let it Bleed’, the song ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ was intended as a medicine for a disappointed and downtrodden generation. If you listen closely, the late 60’s track already has a message that fits pretty well into the ‘Christmas spirit’ agenda: you might want something, but you can’t always have it. The modern day translation?
“You can’t always get what you want” (a new pair of Margiela tabis)
“But if you try sometime” (if you do an eBay deep dive)
“You’ll find, you get what you need” (you’ll find a pair in ok condition, eventually)
WHITE CHRISTMAS – THE DRIFTERS
While this song is totally on the nose of our theme – it had to be my first choice. An odd eighteen years ago, my dad bought a CD at – of all places – Starbucks. The disk had a series of Christmas songs on it, all of which going on to soundtrack each and every of our festive seasons since. .
The Drifters made sure to add a sprinkle of something sparkly and fresh – reimagining this classic song within a funkier, more upbeat vision
With the Christmas period coming to an end, ears everywhere are most likely tired of hearing the same ten songs on repeat. So, treat yourself this Christmas and dip your toe into something new, yet still majorly festive. Happy listening! x
SNOWMAN – SIA
There’s something about a depressing Winter themed song that just gets me in the Christmas spirit. Plucked right off of Sia’s Christmas themed album Snowman is an ode to persevering love. Let’s set the scene, you’re with your imaginary SO, by the fire, spiced mulled wine in hand, donning jumpers you copped from CULTED’s Guide to Xmas Jumpers, having just exchanged gifts you’ve gotten each other from our guide while listening to this heartfelt ballad…perfection.
Even for a wannabe Grinch like myself, this song elicits some sort of yearning and warmth within me. The simplicity of the lyrics and stripped back instrumentals set a tiny but comforting flame alight in my soul.