Christmas 2020 will be a Christmas like no other, thus calling for a Christmas album like no other, and Jingle Burgers, all 12 songs and 18 minutes of it, is that album. Parry Gripp, still probably best known as the leader of Nerf Herder, has built a gently twisted 21st-century musical empire out of social media and silly singles. Jingle Burgers represents one more gleeful expression of Gripp’s irrepressible internet drive toward ridiculousness. As with his many amazing YouTube hits, plus the Emmy Award–winning work he’s done for cartoons on television, these 90-second musical snowballs will appeal to that well-loved demographic commonly known as “children of all ages.” With meticulously crafted toddler symphonies like “Raining Tacos (On Christmas Eve)” and “Pirate Santa Claus,” Gripp comes on like a kindergarten Brian Wilson or a Phil Spector for the preschool set.
One way to enjoy Jingle Burgers that doesn’t necessarily require singing along (although that’s always highly recommended) is to listen for the hip genre experiments that give each track a distinctive flavor. For example, “Pancakes We Have Cooked on High,” which extols the singer’s preference for slightly burned but still soggy in the middle flapjacks, cops its chorus from “Angels We Have Heard on High,” a carol that is itself ripping off the hymn “Gloria in excelsis Deo.” Taco-chewing as percussion on “Raining Tacos” adds crunchy texture to a song that’s already loaded with tasty musical cheese. “Pirate Santa Claus” comes on like an outtake from Paul’s Boutique only to morph into a holiday-themed sea shanty. The album’s title track, “Jingle Burgers,” celebrates the appeal of a Christmas tree hung with hamburgers in the catchy robot-chic idiom of Lipps Inc.’s immortal “Funkytown.” The list, like the beat, goes on. Streaming everywhere and available, inevitably, in its entirety on YouTube, Jingle Burgers can also be obtained in CD format from parrygripp.biz.
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