Brave Combo

It's Christmas, Man!

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Never failing to be quirky and eccentric, Brave Combo has a very unorthodox Christmas album in It's Christmas, Man! Many of the songs are familiar, but what the foursome does with them definitely isn't. When was the last time you heard a ska version of Mel Tormé's "The Christmas Song," an Afro-Cuban take on "The Little Drummer Boy" or a samba version of "O, Christmas Tree?" And the impressive thing is that Brave Combo's off-center ideas (whether applied to original or familiar material) usually work. Very global in its outlook, the Combo combines American rock and R&B with everything from German polka to Mexican ranchero and Colombian cumbia, and, most of the time, manages to pull it off. If you want to hear a Christmas album that takes more than its share of chances, this CD would be a fine choice.

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