It must be that time of the year again folks, fevered messages from the Snowflakes Christmas Singles Club alerting us to their fourth annual yuletide gathering, this time of asking four shimmering seasonal sevens the first of which to be hauled on the festive inspection blocks is a prickly pogo popping discordant dandy from the much loved the Manhattan Love Suicides. Well I say much loved, there was certainly a time when our listening space was festooned with their fuzz twanged grooves and then they split, some became the equally adored Blanche Hudson Weekend who alas, also fell off our radar. Now reformed and putting out platters through odd box, again a label so missed around these parts since they jettisoned us from their mailing list – ho hum – herewith a testy twin set that pairs together ‘look who’s coming to town (please let it snow)’ and a cover of a lost ’79 oddity by Elmo and Patsy entitled ‘grandma got run over by a reindeer’. The former as the press release so rightly makes note, sounding like a half way meeting place where lurk the Primitives at one end and Sonic Youth at the other, a wiry blighter haunted and stalked by a tensely jarring and nerve jangling edginess spooked by Christmases past and grimmed in a tinsel terror that’s skin pricklingly atmospheric that gives it a kind of shadowy macabre that draws a distant kinship to a youthful Banshees albeit scribbling and cobbling twisted bubblegrooves with Zombina and the Skeletones to backdrop VHS silent nightly nasty ‘black christmas’. As to the flip, a snow fallen sepia haloed howler mourning the little publicised death by reindeer occurences, comically odd and really taking the Christmas un-spirit just a little too much off radar methinks, still musically it sneers and spits in the eye of those happy dappy Spector seasonals opting instead for a spot of Shangri-La’s style merry maudlin.