Home Read Classic Album Review: Christmas Decorations | Model 91

Classic Album Review: Christmas Decorations | Model 91

The Brooklyn duo's self-described 'ambient punk' is an intoxicating sonic amalgam.


This came out in 2003 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


WHO ARE THEY? Their name makes them sound like a group of cheery carolers, but in fact Christmas Decorations are a decidedly unfestive Brooklyn duo who combine traditional rock instuments like guitar, bass and, um, melodica — OK, they aren’t all traditional rock instruments — with digital sequencers and spaced-out production.

WHAT’S THIS? Model 91, their 40-minute debut effort, presents a baker’s dozen slices of what they call “ambient punk.” I call it an intoxicating interaction of haunting melody, twangy angst, burbling low-impact percussion, creeping terror, barren bleep-bloop, lightly abrasive textures and deconstructionist minimalism.

HOW DOES IT SOUND? Like a cross between a synthesizer demonstration disc, a stereo test record and an EKG of Brian Eno.