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Christmas - Heritage (1970)


Wonderful second album by Canada's best '60s / '70s psych rock band. Featuring ex members of Reign Ghost, this is a superb mixture of West coast acid guitar, and melodic hard edged rock with trippy effects and jams! Great album! Features extra tracks too!

Christmas was formed in 1969 in Oshawa Ontario, Canada, out of the ashes of the cult underground psychedelic band Reign Ghost. In July 1970, Christmas released an independent self titled debut that brought some media attention to the band and a contract with the Daffodil Records label. In December 1970 , less than six months after the release of the debut, Christmas released their debut Daffodil Records album entitled "Heritage". 

Christmas was comprised of vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Bob Bryden, bass Tyler Raizenne, drummer Rich Richter and Robert Bulger on guitars all of whom were still in their teens. The album gathered good reviews and was well received by critics but it was not commercially viable because the long songs and hard rock sound . It became an instant favorite in the underground music scene just about everywhere but in Canada

Consequently Christmas broke up in late 1971 only to resurface the following year, line up intact , under the name "The Spirit Of Christmas". 

In the late 80's and 90's the original Heritage album became a highly sought after collector's item especially in the USA and Europe because of the band's unorthodox style and progressive influences. While the original "Heritage" album contained 10 songs in the heavy rock progressive style of music, this reissue features an extra four bonus tracks. This reissue by Unidisc has been digitally mastered and the original artwork has been kept.


Christmas is not, you'll probably concede, a likely choice of names for o rock group. But Christmas is not really a likely group. The average age of the four members of Christmas is a mere 17, yet lest this should deter you. we should point out very quickly that they make music many players fully ten years their senior have not yet dreamed of making. Lead singer and composer, Bob Bryden, thought up the name a year before he put Christmas together on December 25,1969. At the time, it seemed to fit. "Although our music is heavy, it is also optimistic. In part, it's peaceful, and it is something to gel into the spirit of". We felt the same way when we first heard Christmas music, in a rotting, disused air force barracks building on the outskirts of Oshawa, Ontario. It was a cloudy afternoon, ond the weeds around the building were high and healthy from the months of summer sun.

We were jammed into one small room at the end of the building, and the music was louder than hell but it was very relaxing. You weren't being browbeaten or bashed around the ears. Indeed, when we walked out into that cloudless afternoon and looked across the criss-crossing air strips, there was a strange feeling of ¡ov and electricity. We felt as though we'd heard something very very special. We explored further, and as the leaves turned red across tne Southern Ontario Hollands, we spent long and fascinating nights in the studio recording this album. That initial feeling we'd hod at the Oshawa air force base never left us. The flatlands are white now with the first snows, and the fires are burning in the red bricks and we're listening to the album. We still cannot believe the depth and definition of these four young musicians. We do believe though humbly, that this is the most original music to ever come out of tne north country. We sit before our fires, gazing into the flames, and wonder how it is that such young musicians have so much insight and understanding. And so much balls.

We reflect on the unlikeliness of Christmas, and its four members, the 16 year old drummer, Richard Richter, the bass player, Tyler Raizenne who is also 16, the 18 year old lead guitarist, Robert Bulger and the 19 year old guitarist-writer-inspirational leader, Bob Bryden. Such a union is as fragile as an early snowfall on still-yellow leaves, as sensitive as the look of belief in a young couples eyes, and yet as strong as the un-mortared stones in a Roman aqueduct. We Know it will grow, just as the snow melts and the ground dries up. We feel these strange vibrations and we know they will not elude you. We have confidence and ears and hearts and a longing to know more.

Christmas, after all, is something to get into the spirit of...

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