Josh Modell and Andrea Battleground from The Onion's AV Club join us this week with some holiday gift ideas. Josh recommends Tarantino XX, a 10-disc, Blu-ray collection of several of Tarantino's most loved films. Andrea suggests picking up one of the Rediscover jigsaw puzzles of your gift recipient's favorite album covers.
John Roderick and Jonathan Coulton each carved his own warm, authentic, relatable space in the indie rock scene, and their sounds and aesthetics are complementary enough to make a collaboration welcome and exciting. That the collaboration comes in the form of a Christmas album is unexpected, but the end result, One Christmas at a Time, is a fun and charming exploration of familiar holiday themes -- from coping with drunk uncles to the one ultimate childhood gift. Roderick and Coulton join us this week to discuss their first meeting, the challenge inherent in capturing the feelings and emotions of the holiday season while maintaining secular points of view, and why celebrating Christmas in Los Angeles is contemptible.
Navigating the holidays can be a treacherous task; between divining proper party etiquette, appropriately selecting gifts for your loved ones, and just coping with all of the little things that spring up around this time of the year, you're probably aching for some guidance right about now. Fortunately, an ace team of (terrible) advice-giving brothers joins us this week to set us straight.
If you're hungry for more wisdom, seek out Justin McElroy, Travis McElroy, and Griffin McElroy's podcast My Brother, My Brother and Me on MaximumFun.org or in the iTunes store.
The choral symphonic band The Polyphonic Spree's new album, Holidaydream: Sounds of the Holidays started out as an experiment -- what happens when you take The Polyphonic Spree's ethereal, angelic sound and apply it to holiday favorites? The Polyphonic Spree's lead singer Tim DeLaughter joins Bullseye contributor Daniel Ralston to explore this question, the role of spectacle in the act, and DeLaughter's experience collaborating with his young son on the record.
Popular Christmas music can be pretty hit or miss, and a relatively small catalog of options combined with seasonal overexposure to the genre can make the hits seem few and far between. One Christmas pop song that never disappoints Jesse: Donny Hathaway's "This Christmas".
Andrew brings this week's case against his wife Alex. The birth of their first child last year made real a long-running dispute which had been hypothetical up until that point: should parents foster a belief in Santa Claus? Andrew says no -- he believes perpetuating the Santa myth damages parents' credibility, and he doesn't appreciate a fictional character getting the glory for bringing the best gifts. Alex says yes -- she claims Andrew is unable to appreciate the joy Santa brings to children because he grew up without the belief himself. Who is right? Judge John Hodgman decides.
Thanks again to The Cave in Long Island City, New York for generously allowing us to use their recording facilities this week and to engineer Marcus Parks. The Cave hosts several comedy podcasts, and you can find them at CaveComedyRadio.com.
Just because Christmas has come and gone doesn't mean the holidays are over. This year, Dave Shumka of Stop Podcasting Yourself is hosting CBC Radio 3's All-Star Tribute to Sweaters. It features great moments in sweater history, some lessons on what a sweater is and isn't, and sweater talk with Dan Werb of Woodhands and Steve Bays of Hot Hot Heat.
Jason and Brandi disagree: Jason believes that Christmas decorations should not be put up before Christmas Eve, keeping the spirit of Advent. Brandi argues that they should go up in the first week of December, so that the decorations may be enjoyed longer. Only one man can settle the dispute.
Plus: Audrey Ewell and Aaron Aites moved to Norway to pursue their interest in that country's black metal scene. They discovered a story of extreme aesthetics, murder and church burning. The film they created, Until The Light Takes Us, follows two of the scene's scions. Gylve Nagell, known as "Fenriz," of the band Darkthrone, is a quiet, contemplative metalhead, deeply invested in the medium's aesthetics and rueful of what the scene has become. Varge Vikernes, known as "Count Grischnak," of the band Burzum is a distinct contrast. He's a charismatic and eloquent advocate of an extreme Norweigan nativist political and religious agenda. He's also a convicted murderer and church arsonist.(Ewell and Aites Transcript)
Featuring (in order): Paul F. Tompkins, R.O. Manse, Tig Notaro, Rob Huebel, Patton Oswalt, Mike Phirman, Jimmy Pardo, Brian Posehn & Scott Aukerman, Garfunkel & Oates, Aimee Mann, Chris Hardwick, Paul Scheer & June Diane Raphael, Doug Benson, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Nick Thune, "Weird Al" Yankovic, Cracked Out, Dragon Boy Suede, Natasha Leggero, Thomas Lennon & Ed Helms