Artist: "Various Artists"
Album: "Christmas Vacation"
Label: Warner Bros. Records
Review: Here's a classic soundtrack that no fan of Christmas music can do without. The National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation soundtrack features every song you could possibly want from the movie, plus some extras. Unfortunately, for some insane reason, it's been out of print for a long time and the only way to get it is if you happen to find it used in a music shop or on sites like eBay. Even more bizarre is that there were only 20,000 tenth anniversary editions of the album ever printed AND they were only sold at Six Flags Magic Mountain back in 1999. Yeah, I don't understand it either, but those be the facts.
Still, it's definitely an album worth hunting down if you can because there's no denying that some of the best Christmas holiday tunes are on it. Mavis Staples' titular "Christmas Vacation" tune appears on the album a few times, one with the sound effects from the movie and one without. I for one always loved her voice on that track. You'll also find "Mele Kalikimaka" by Bing Crosby and the Andrew Sisters, which is hands down one of my all-time favorite Christmas tunes. In fact, it probably is my favorite one, so that's more than enough reason to pick the album up right there. It even has the amusing instrumental tuba performance of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer from Cousin Eddie's infamous "Shitter was full!" scene. You just can't go wrong with that.
Fans of the Vacation films will also be happy to know that in edition to various sound clip snippets from the film, the classic "Holiday Road" tune was also included on this tenth anniversary edition soundtrack. Fans of the Vacation films will not be happy to know that there is also a version of the song performed by Limp Bizkit on the album. Guess they just wanted to appeal to teenagers at the time, but god... that really wasn't necessary.
Don't let that one track dissuade you though, it's a great soundtrack and well worth hunting down. Just be aware that there are a LOT of bootlegs floating around out there and the only way to know that you're getting the genuine issue is if the back tray card has a red colored "Special Edition X / out of 20,000" printed on it. If you find a copy without this text on the back, you've got yourself a bootleg. Happy hunting!
(Scored on a 0.5 - 5 pickles rating: 0.5 being the worst and 5 being the best)
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