Like a Sisyphean caveat, Dan Bryk’s Christmas Record is quietly rolling uphill, picking up some great reviews along the way…

Grayson Currin of Independent Weekly:

“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…”

Carmen Lyon of Suite’s Top 10 Indie Christmas Albums

3. Dan Bryk: “Christmas Record

“All I can really say is that this is probably the most original of Christmas-themed albums out there. It’s so strangely unique that I sometimes wonder how holiday-related it really is, and then I realize that’s what Dan Bryk does and that’s why I love it!”

John Sakamoto of the Toronto Star’s Anti-Hit List and Podcast:

2. Dan Bryk

“In which the displaced Torontonian (he now calls North Carolina home) encounters Jesus changing a flat tire in the parking lot of a Radio Shack and becomes reacquainted with the true meaning of the season. What ensues may be intermittently sardonic — after preaching about peace and the wings of a dove, “Jesus” self-deprecatingly observes, “I know they’re clichés, but they work” — yet the overall tone of earnestness deftly plays against the song’s comic premise.”

Brian Howe of Pitchfork:

“[Four Stars] Sleigh bells and chimes are a hallmark of popular Yuletide songs, evoking so much winter wonder at once– reindeer on the roof, hansom carriages in the snow, tinkling icicles falling from the eaves. Leave it to wittily depressive Dan Bryk to warp their good cheer toward the doomy, intoning them like funeral bells amid the ominous drums and minor-key pianos of this gloom-pop Christmas crash ‘n’ burn… A real grinch, all right, but anyone who’s got a shitty Christmas or two under their belt will know what he means. Oh, did I mention that the song is kind of a suicide note? Merry Christmas.”

Jeff Liberty of KV Style Magazine (Kennebecasis Valley, New Brunswick):

“Dan is one of the most eloquent lyricists who also possesses a potent sense of humour. He is also a master craftsman of brilliant pop sensibilities. Armed with a piano, Dan was the Indie “It Boy” a few years back. He has since moved south and continues to craft some of the best pop music never heard. The Christmas Record is a great addition to his already rich catalogue and is a must for the true music aficionado. Songs that are sometimes auto-biographical and other unique holiday songs soon to be classics sit side by side on the disc. This CD is for those looking for a Christmas release with a new outlook and maybe one that hits closer to home. My favorite track is Cozy Evenings (Morgan David Remix) and it is maybe one of the best Christmas songs i have ever heard! Fans of Joe Jackson, Ben Folds and Randy Newman will love this cd and i highly recommend ALL of Dan’s CDs.”

Kerry Doole of Corriere Canadese Tandem (Toronto):

“If you’re still searching for a Christmas album with a difference, seek out Christmas Record from DAN BRYK. The former Torontonian is now based in Raleigh, North Carolina, and he’s come up with a disc that is both contemporary and seasonal in sensibility. His melodic piano-driven pop balladry suits the seasonal vibe real well, and he mixes tunes from other songwriters with originals and classics…”

Gabino Travassos of Mote (Calgary):

“You know of course that the guy who wrote “…and Now Our Love is Dead” didn’t just release a chirpy little Christmas album full of family-friendly good cheer. Nor is this a sarcastic stab in the heart of the holiday season that you might expect from a smug indie rocker. Instead this is an entertaining, sensitive yet comedic, singer-singwriter album similar to his 2000 release Lovers Leap, but instead the songs are about Christmas, a tete-a-tete with Jesus Christ, and a long drive across the United States… it will keep you alive with indie rock Christmas tales year round.”


“Someone halfheartedly complained recently in the comments section that the Christmas song I linked to didn’t sound enough like Christmas. I guess they meant an idealized Christmas where everyone’s happy and families get along and we don’t have to go back to work the next day. But the majority of folks don’t live that Christmas so here’s Dan Byrk’s (although “Cozy Evenings” is a cover) take on Christmas. These are songs that use Christmas as a backdrop to make some broader point, usually a very melancholy one about loneliness and missed opportunities. Because of that they are timeless and not just something to be consumed and used up over the holidays.”

And our favourite, from masashi on myspace:

“I just bought your X-mas album. Thank goodness, an X-mas album that rocks. You rule.”

Thanks man!

Listen to Christmas Record in its entirety here.

Warren Truitt, the NY Public Library’s Children’s Librarian (who previously weighed in with a glowing review of Starboy on his Kids Music That Rocks blog) has posted his 2006 Top Twenty Albums for Kids, and…

Lee Feldman’s animated rock music soundtrack STARBOY is #5!

If you love your child, you should buy it!!

More on Starboy at or become Starboy’s myspace friend. Take that, Cathy and Marcie!!

“Lee Feldman’s I’ve Forgotten Everything is unlike anything else in contemporary pop… If you have a passion for good songwriting, you need this album.”
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves!

“I’ve Forgotten Everything” REVIEW
September 2006, by Art Dudley  

Then there’s Lee Feldman, a classically trained pop musician who brings a strong if decidedly off-center sense of melody to the art of traditional American songwriting, and whose lyrics betray a poetic sensibility in tune with the best of the 20th century Americans (especially Theodore Roethke, whose “My Papa’s Waltz” could easily hide on one of Feldman’s albums).  All of which is to say that Lee Feldman is unclassifiable. Continue reading

Good grief!! UM geto supastar Lee Feldman recently had to send a proxy to Toronto’s NXNE after busting up his knee so bad it required emergency surgery.

The good news is, Lee and his errant knee are feeling well enough to head out on the road for a few mid-summer dates:

Sat., July 29th 08:00 PM
Ashland Coffee & Tea
100 N. Railroad Avenue, Ashland, VA 23005
Door: $10.00
Opening for Chris Moore

Sunday, July 30th 08:00 PM
The Cave
452 1/2 W. Franklin Street, Chapel Hill, NC
Door: PWYL
with the above-mentioned Chris Moore and Dan Bryk

This show will be Webcast LIVE so even if you’re not in NC, there’s no excuse for missing this great line-up! Continue reading

Just a reminder, Lee is playing a CD release party with Byron Isaacs (Bass) and Bill Dobrow (Drums) at the Rockwood Music Hall, on 196 Allen (between Houston & Stanton) at 7:00 on March 23rd.

Here’s a nice little preview from this week’s New Yorker:

Lee Feldman, a piano-playing songwriter from Brooklyn, is a fixture on the downtown scene. In the late nineties, he received acclaim for his début album, “Living It All Wrong,” and scored a contract with Mercury Records. But the label got caught in an industry merger and it never released his follow-up, “The Man in a Jupiter Hat,” which Feldman eventually put out himself. Known for tight pop tales of urban life, little vignettes tempered by an incisive sense of humor, Feldman has collected a group of solid local musicians around him, including Teddy Thompson, Steven Bernstein, and Greta Gertler, all of whom contributed to his new record, “I’ve Forgotten Everything.” On March 23, Feldman, backed by his longtime bass-and-drum trio, celebrates the album’s release.