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Sam Morrison Band | The Christmas Album

The southern rockers from Southern California take a trip to the North Pole.

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The Allman Brothers Band never made a Christmas album. Ditto ZZ Top, John Mellencamp, Bob Seger and the original lineup of Lynyrd Skynyrd. Thankfully (or not, depending on your assessment of the situation), The Sam Morrison Band is here to fill the holiday void left by all those Scrooge-loving southern bands and humbugging heartland rockers. The gruff singer-guitarist and his Southern California southern-rock sextet merrily take their blue-collar sound to the North Pole on this 10-track outing, recasting oldies like To Heck With Ole Santa Claus and What Child Is This with harmonized solos, punchy power and shuffling grooves reminiscent of their more-famous forebears. Speaking of reminiscent: Their version of God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen sets the timeless carol against the plaintive sax line and dark-night strains of Seger’s ’70s road-weary chestnut Turn the Page. I kid you not. Love it or hate it, you sure won’t forget it anytime soon. Though it may make you wish Bob would give in and cut a carol of two hisself.