When Mark Kozelek isn’t preoccupied by picking fights with his audience or bands like the War On Drugs, he’s releasing covers from A Charlie Brown Christmas. Or at least that’s the case as of recently.
Slated within his Nov. 4th-releasing Christmas album appropriately titled Sings Christmas Carols, Mark Kozelek will perform a variety of covers; perhaps even an original of his own that mimics the dreary sadness and open-book honesty of his February-released album, Benji. Of the first Christmas tracks to be revealed, Vince Guaraldi’s classic “Christmas Time is Here” sounds as doughy and fleeting under Kozelek’s wing as it did before. For a holiday two months away, The Peanuts cover is especially scintillating – like watching the first snowfall of the winter season from a frosty-edged window.
Pitchfork (the site where the song first premiered) identifies the spoken word section originally by Charlie Brown and Linus to be present – this time with Kozelek as Charlie Brown and a his friend Nathan as Linus. As Kozelek says:
“Nathan, I think there must be something wrong with me. Christmas is coming but I’m not happy, and I don’t feel the way I’m suppose to feel. I just don’t understand Christmas, I guess. You know, I like giving presents, sending Christmas cards and decorating trees and all that…but I’m still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.”
In typical Linus fashion, his friend Nathan quips back with:
“Mark, you’re the only person I know who can take a wonderful season like Christmas and turn it into a problem. Maybe she’s right. Of all the Mark Kozeleks in the world, you’re the Mark Kozelek-iest.”
For a full listen to “Christmas Time is Here”, stream it below: