A Merry Christmas from the Indy!!

Danta Claus

Dan Bryk is the lead story in this week’s Independent Weekly Music section!

No, really! And best of all, writer Grayson Currin folds in a charming, even funny interview with Dan and his Christmas Record partner-in-grime/dubstep Erin McGinn.

Here’s a leedle snippet of the article:

“Dan Bryk just released Christmas Record. It’s his first Christmas album. He insists it will be his last.

On the back cover, Bryk is dressed up as Santa Claus, his hyperbolic white beard falling all the way to the armrests of an oversized wooden chair. Bryk had his picture taken tonight, too: First, in front of a large, metal Christmas tree, smiling wide-eyed, like a kid whose holiday wait has finally ended. He had the same expression posing in front of a pink plastic pig that wore a red Santa hat. Christmas is this guy’s thing, right?

Not exactly. It’s perfectly believable when, not 15 minutes later, Bryk glances down at the sidewalk, shrugs and dismisses the whole thing: “I don’t know about Christmas, really. I guess it’s just not my season.”

Bryk isn’t kidding. The 30-something songwriter, known for his piano playing and keen observational wit, doesn’t hate Christmas, but he certainly doesn’t like it, either. Perhaps the front cover of Christmas Record tells the story of his antipathy best: A bright, red ornament is shattered across an otherwise pristine white floor. The shards are too big for the ornament to have been thrown. It looks like it was hanging high with seasonal spirit. Then it came crashing down. The hook that held it to the branch is still there. Maybe someone bumped into it? Maybe someone shook the tree? Or maybe it just got tired of trying.

That’s the sentiment of a Dan Bryk Christmas, detailed in what has to be one of the most self-effacing Christmas albums ever. It’s predicated neither on seasonal and spiritual joy nor money-making maneuvers. It’s just an honest (if exaggerated) appraisal of the holiday’s inspired difficulties—infinite loneliness, bad luck, bankrupting ambitions and overactive materialism. You know, the kind of stuff that people call “cheer…”

And damn, he’s just getting started! Read the whole thing on their website. As if that wasn’t enough, Brian Howe (who also wrote a fantastic review of Love Me For Christmas for Pitchfork) gave Christmas Record a sweet album review AND to top it all off, they printed the entire lyrics to Great Adventure flanked by candy canes. It really is a sight to see! (Did we mention they even included a streaming player with both of those songs?)

Talk about a Christmas present!

Happy Holidays, Everybody!!!

From all of us (all over the place!!) at Urban Myth!

Dan Bryk Christmas Record & New Website

Yes, it’s that most commercial time of the year, and who better to capitalize on it than the Brykster? Bryk launches today not only his didactically-titled Christmas Record [listen here] but a fresh and highly alliterative new website. (All you code generator haters are gonna hate on it, but necessity was the mother of intervention.)

But back to the Christmas Record, it’s 7 to 9 songs depending on the format/download service, it’s mostly overdubbed solo by Bryk with some late-game assists from guitarists Tad Dreis, Jim Brantley and Tim Carless (all awesome singing songwriters in their own right…) and extra special guest vocalist Erin McGinn. The songs are a mix of originals and non-traditional covers. Dan explains the album’s genesis fully on his new blog.

Of course, you can buy Christmas Record direct from Dan’s new web shop or a tasty variety of online retailers. If you’re already on Dan’s mailing list keep an eye out around Thanksgiving for a special discount coupon code on everything from the webshop until the end of December. So gosh, golly, sign up if you haven’t already, and give the gift of Bryk this Christmas.

Check out the reams of critical praise for Christmas Record from places like Pitchfork and the Toronto Star!