Various Artists: Yuletides & Stage Dives

yuletides-and-stage-dives-reviewBefore the internet was a mainstay in my life, I relied on friends and CD (you know the DVDs that only play music?) samplers that came with magazines for new music discovery. Some of those little CDs led me to get into Paramore, Hellogoodbye and Self Against City (love you, wherever you are). But today those CDs are as common as an original show idea from Seth MacFarlane. So we sit and wait for a special occasion to bring us a new compilation, and wouldn’t you know it, here’s one for you that is for a great cause. The Catalyst Publicity Group & Keep A Breast have put together more than enough songs to pick and choose from on Yuletides & Stage Dives, including some familiar faces like Let It Happen, Pentimento, Life After Liftoff and Call Me Anything.

A huge chunk of Yuletides & Stage Dives is centered around bands that fall into the pop punk and pop rock category, so that’s where we’ll begin this walk through this musical wonderland. Atlantic Avenue’s “The Fool I Am” hits you like a radio hit with its catchy chorus and easy to learn verses. Fans of The Maine, listen up. A Loss For Words does a good job at representing the pop punk realm with “Pirouette.” Those two are good, but it’s Let It Happen’s “Bridges” that will likely be a fan favorite. It has nothing to do with the holidays, but that really doesn’t matter much. The only thing that does? It’s as addictive as gingerbread cookies.

Another big genre on Yuletides & Stage Dives is the singer songwriter, indie one. They’re not as strong as the pop rock tracks, but there were two that were able to stand on their own two feet. Rival Summers “Up Until Now” and Kayliegh Goldsworthy’s indie pop treat, “Silly Games” are the pair that will make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Tossed in between the expected, was of course the unexpected. The Hip Hop of Oxymorons’ “Learn Somethin,” the My Chemical Romance like ways of Kieran Strange’s “Merry Undead Christmas,” and for being the only song to really get me interested in an instant for being completely unlike the rest of the album, Premier’s “Abominations.”

Well this couldn’t very well be an album about Yuletides & Stage Dives without some holiday music. The best one for spreading that cheer comes with Call Me Anything’s “Holiday.” I remember interviewing Will from CMA and was surprised that this was their track. It took on a different beat than I expected from them, and it really did the trick. As far as holiday jeer…Listen to Balance & Composure’s “More To Me” and The Dangerous Summer’s “Northern Lights.” Both were somber songs that should accompany those who aren’t into all that holiday mumbo jumbo.

One can’t be so sure that Yuletides & Stage Dives would’ve been a free CD in my AP, but since it’s 2012 and we don’t do that anymore, you can get this album December 5th through the 28th. Plus, don’t forget that all donations go to the Keep A Breast Foundation, so don’t be a Grinch.


1.  Set It Off – No Control – (Equal Vision Records)
2.  Life After Liftoff – The Getaway
3.  Call Me Anything – Holiday
4.  This Century – Sound of Fire
5.  The Background – Okay
6.  Drawing North- Kites
7.  The Narrative – Winters Coming (acoustic version)
8.  Mike Naran – You
9.  Oxymorrons – Learn Somethin
10.   A Loss For Words – Pirouette (Velocity/Rise Records)
11.   Fighting The Villain – The Great Charlatan
12.   Call To Attraction – Good Day
13.   Ratham Stone – You’re My Girl Tonight
14.   Atlantic Avenue – The Fool I Am (Eulogy)
15.   Ocean Is Theory- Stocking Stuffer – (Razor & Tie)
16.   Bad Rabbits – Can’t Back Down
17.   Driver Friendly – Messidona – (Hopeless)
18.   For The Foxes – Christmas In The Midwest (Hopeless)
19.   Greek Fire – Make Me Believe
20.   Rocky Loves Emily – Dream (Tooth And Nail / EMI)
21.   Schematic (Dave Elkins) – Hide and Seek (Schematic Records)
22.   Holly Would… – XJulietX – (One Day Survivor)
23.   Pentimento – Circles
24.   The Body Rampant – Seabrinx
25.   Balance and Composure – More To Me – (No Sleep)
26.   The Venetia Fair – Master Blaster
27.   Otenki – Kinetic
28.   Premier – Abominations
29.   Uh Huh Baby Yeah! – Dead Friends – (Little Heart)
30.   Let It Happen – Bridges
31.   What Looks Like Crazy – Easy
32.   Kayleigh Goldsworthy – Silly Games (Fierce Little Records)
33.   BEARCAT – Home (Faux Xmas)
34.   The Dangerous Summer – Northern Lights (Acoustic) (Hopeless)
35.   Ed Tullet – Teeth – (Equal Vision Records)
36.   Rival Summers – Up Until Now
37.   Paper States – Aim To Please
38.   Signals Midwest – Stale Air
39.   Asker – Raise The Dead (Schematic Records)
40.   The Cleopatra Complex – Killing Time
41.   Treehouse – Tell No One (Schematic Records)
42.   Kieran Strange – Merry Undead Christmas

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