By Corrine Love
By Corrine Love
Every year around mid-November artists rush out collections of syrupy versions of “Silent Night” and “Jingle Bells.”
The music can become so predictable, that you really only need one Christmas album for the rest of your life – ever.
If you decide to buy a second one though, pick up Richard Cheese’s “Silent Nightclub.”
Cheese, who is a lounge club extraordinaire, has albums such as “I’d Like a Virgin,” and “Lounge Against the Machine.”
Cheese makes parody albums in the same cloth as Weird Al Yankovich; however , Cheese has more panache and style.
“Silent Nightclub” is just in time for the holidays. A collection of 14 holiday classics, surprising covers and beloved songs make for one Christmas album that will not be tossed once the season is over.
What is so unique about “Silent Nightclub” are the amusing Christmas standards, Vegas style.
Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus,” Band Aid’s “Do They Know It’s Christmas” and John Lennon’s “Imagine” will hardly strike the same chord as chestnuts roasting on an open fire.
However, these newly minted holiday classics may strike the funny bone.
Cheese could border on kitsch; one gets the feeling that his cover of Beyonce’s “Naughty Girl” should be taken seriously.
The original song sampled Donna Summer’s “Love to Love You,” but Cheese erases the original melody and instead replaces with a tribal percussion and some odd “boom shacka-lacka boom” vocal ad libs.
Where many Christmas albums take the holiday and make it oh-so-very serious and boring, Cheese’s holiday seems like fun.
Another plus side to “Silent Nightclub” is that all the songs never clock in over two minutes, which is great, since many Holiday songs are too long and tedious anyway.
Fun in the similar vein of watching a sarcastic Tony Bennett get loose and perform an amusing rendition of Modern English’s “I melt with you.”
“Silent Nightclub” has the feel of a Christmas album, minus the saccharine coating and instead it’s “Christmas in Vegas.”
Apart from the standards, a couple of the songs on “Silent Nightclub” are worth the purchase price alone.
Remember Vanilla Ice’s “Ice Ice Baby?”
Although many people choose to forget that song, Cheese revives the sample heavy song, removes Ice’s annoying vocal tracks and turns it into a two – minute bossa nova chill out session.
If rap and synth-pop covers do not strike your fancy, “Silent Nightclub” also sports a startling heading track, The Dead Kennedy’s “Holiday in Cambodia.”
Cheese’s cover of “Holiday In Cambodia” is so cheery, so holiday spirit un-like, so awfully parodying that the lyrics stand out more than ever, specifically when Cheese’s vocal swing delivers “It’s a holiday in Cambodia, Don’t forget to pack a wife.”
To stray away from being a one-off novelty item “Silent Nightclub” musically can stand on its own.
The musical renditions of “Personal Jesus,” “Naughty Girl,” and “I Melt with You” could work instrumentally but are accented with Cheese’s spiked-punch persona.
The arrangements for the covers are new and refreshing, who knew that “Personal Jesus” could be turned into a two- minute piano fete.
A wealth of hidden gems can be found on “Silent Nightclub,” if it’s not the music, it is Cheese’s vocal delivery of lyrics that were not written for him.
If you’re going to buy a holiday album this year, skip the collections of bland holiday songs and pick up “Silent Nightclub.”
Just explain at your holiday party that “I Melt with You” is this year’s substitute for “Silent Night.”