If you were to ask me how I felt about Christmas, I'd say I'm a fan of it sure, but only in a very subtle, modest way. Y'know, the way it used to be back when it still meant something more than stress and ostentatious lighting.
My fondest memories of Christmas are more like snapshots of feeling happy as a kid, surrounded by warmth and comfort with my favourite people, than they are of any one specific thing (read: present). Some people treat Christmas like a string of emblems, a tick-list (ha) of criteria that need to be met in order for the period to qualify as festive. For me it's not like that. The enjoyment I get out of Christmas is largely fueled by nostalgia, so I don't really get how something can be objectively deemed 'Christmassy' - once you get past the obvious superficial 'this is a stocking, look there's Rudolph' sort of categorisation, anyway.
That being said, I will concede that certain songs and films vibe better with my idiosyncratic list of things that make me feel that festive warmth inside - Last Christmas, for example, is the only track I consider to actually evoke a Christmas vibe, in terms of instrumentation and groove (sticking some sleigh bells into an otherwise generic track does not constitute festivity in my book); but again, I probably just feel this way because it reminds me very strongly of both an old Christmas edition of Art Attack where Neil was making some masterpiece in the snow, and the Icicle Inn from Final Fantasy 7 - possibly the most Christmassy place in all of fiction.
Given that subtlety is the name of the game here (unlike those crusty weasels who post count-downs to Christmas in the middle of fucking July), my headline track for the holiday period is one that tastes somewhat festive, but like cinnamon or red onion chutney, really suits the palette of any season. The opening arpeggios and glistening percussion certainly evoke a very strong feeling on standing on an ice-cold platform waiting for the Polar or Hogwarts Express, but from here it's really your decision as the listener to decide whether you feel like it's a track that fits your own personal idea of where Christmas magic truly emanates from.
Either way it's a fuckin banger though innit!
Himalaya by Ellipsis
The Music to Save The World playlist is sponsored this month by Himalaya from Ellipsis.
The journey begins - fresh Chillstep from Ellipsis to help you focus. Stream it now:
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About the curator - Matt Jenko
Matt Jenko is a university postgraduate and music producer with an unhealthy obsession with Rick & Morty and all things Game of Thrones. When he’s not in the studio (a rare occurrence these days), he’s fueling his passion for music either on the net or out in the real world. He likes being out in the nature (in the least strenuous capacity though, let’s be real here) and chilling with his cat, and he’s also pretty proud of his mammoth collection of books that he’s never read.