Christmas comes early for Falco fans as this 12" mini LP on red vinyl arrives at indie records stores on Nov. 24 as part of the Record Store Day Black Friday event. The set contains eight mostly well-known Christmas songs and Falco, who often likes to put a dark edge to his music, plays it straight here as he sticks to each song's original arrangement. Side A begins with Falco crooning a bluesy rendition of "Santa Claus is Back in Town;" sweet backing vocals make the song as tasty as a candy cane in a Christmas day rum toddy. "White Christmas" lopes along to a gentle country rhythm, Falco gives Elvis Presley's version of "Blue Christmas" a run for its money and "Jingle Bell Rock" swings straight to the dance floor, complete with twangy and precise guitar from Mario Monterosso. Side B opens with the classic holiday sing-along "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" before moving into the less familiar "Christmas Blues." The effort wraps up with "Holly Jolly Christmas" where a bright melody and a drum stick clicking rhythm highlight the song's novelty aspect, and another more obscure cut, a long, funky groove called "Soulful Christmas." Falco indicates in the album's liner notes that he had been wanting to do a Christmas record for quite some time; fans will be appropriately gleeful that he was finally able to deliver this nice gift. Falco's band here is rounded out by journeyman rock bassist Mike Watt, drummer Toby Dammit of Nick Cave's touring band and pianist Francesco D'Agnolo, noted for his work with composer Ennio Morricone. A Tav Falco Christmas on vinyl is limited to 1000 copies; if you miss out on getting the wax the title will be available on CD and as a download on Dec. 1.