Now that I’ve introduced you to my favorite Santa, it’s time for a look at my favorite Christmas songs! The Killers have raised over $850,000 for the (RED) campaign by releasing Christmas singles. They very well could have decided to cover holiday standards and/or classic hymns however, that is not the case as Brandon Flowers and co. have created original holiday tunes since 2006.
Now it’s 2015, and I have 10 songs I love to play during December. 10 seems to be the magic number as sites like NerdGlow and WhatCulture have also released “Best Killers christmas Songs” lists, so in the spirit of the season, here’s my ranking of The Killers’ holiday tunes, from least favorite to favorite.
10. “Boots” (2010)
Apparently I’m the anomaly, as similar lists have ranked “Boots” much higher. I do like the sentiment that the song tells, but the music has always droned for me. The beginning contains an excerpt from It’s a Wonderful Life, so maybe that’s why everyone else loves it?
9. “Joseph, Better You Than Me” (feat. Elton John, Neil Tennant) (2008)
This song tells of the Christmas story from Joseph’s POV and underlines Joseph as someone who had a lot to deal with. Brandon, Elton, and Neil agree: better that Joseph than them. It’s pretty much a “sucks to be you, but you’re definitely stronger than me”-type song. The addition of Elton and Neil are interesting, albeit that Elton definitely adds a bit of warbly drama. It’s a pleasant tune nonetheless and has grown on me over the years.
8. “Cowboy’s Christmas Ball” (2011)
The lyrics are in fact an 1890 poem by William Lawrence Chittenden. Even though it’s not original lyrics, the song itself is really fun and super catchy. It’s more fun with the music video, however, because there’s cowboys AND aliens!
7. “I Feel It In My Bones” (feat. Ryan Pardey) (2012)
So out of the Santa trilogy, I think this song is the weakest: it’s very melancholy and dramatic for a holiday song. I do love singing the “nowhere to HIIIIIIIIDE” part at the end of the 2nd verse, though.
6. “A Great Big Sled” (feat. Toni Halliday) (2006)
This song was the very first Christmas song The Killers made, and it is excellent at capturing at the jovial holiday spirit without being either too cloying or too cynical. With lyrics like “I wanna roll arouuuund like a kid in the snow,” it always puts a smile to my face.
5. ¡Happy Birthday Guadalupe! (feat. Wild Light and Mariachi El Bronx ) (2009)
I really liked the inclusion of Mariachi El Bronx. the lyrics are a little cheesy, but the music is fun. The sentiment behind this song is that even though the world is terrible right now, let’s just enjoy Christmas. Which frankly, is the nice thing about the holidays. We can all escape for a little bit.
4. “Christmas in L.A.” (feat. Dawes) (2013)
I wish The Killers and Dawes would collaborate more because I love their sounds together. This tune is a melancholy song about a struggling actor spending the holidays in a place that isn’t very traditionally seasonal for wintertime. “Christmas in L.A.” is a well-crafted ballad that hits on something: sometimes the holidays suck and it’s not all happy jingle bells and warm chestnuts by the fire–an interesting counterpoint to ¡Happy Birthday Guadalupe!, for sure.
3. Dirt Sledding (feat. Ryan Pardey and Richard Dreyfuss) (2015)
Considering that Dirt Sledding was released this year, it says a lot that it’s my number 3. I love Santa’s redemption, and the chorus is catchy as all get-out. The Killers are lettin’ loose and havin’ fun as am I.
2. “Joel the Lump of Coal” (feat. Jimmy Kimmel) (2014)
This song came really close to being my number 1, because out of all their songs, the sentiment is the most heart-warming. Joel, said lump of coal, gets delivered to a boy on Christmas morn, excited to be a present only to learn that he’s “just some booby prize.” Without ruining the nice ending to the song, Joel turns out to be exactly what the naughty boy needed. This song is also notable in that for once, Santa is played by Jimmy Kimmel, and not Ryan Pardey.
1. “Don’t Shoot Me Santa” (feat. Ryan Pardey) (2007)
Hands down. This song is so fantastically kitschy with such a great music video that it was hard for me to put it anywhere but number 1 (sorry, Joel). this song was the song that showed The Killers had some interesting tricks up their sleeves for creating a holiday tune.
I am hoping to squeeze out a book review before Christmas, but we’ll see! I jet off to Vegas on Monday to spend Christmas with my Mimi.