Smashing Pumpkins are back, and their reunion album, Shiny and Oh So Bright, Vol. 1 / LP: No Past. No Future. No Sun., is actually solid. That’s a good sign for fans who were hoping Billy Corgan re-teaming with James Iha and Jimmy Chamberlin would help return the alternative icons back to form. And this doesn’t look to be a one-off thing, either, as Corgan recently teased that he’s already thinking about new music for Vol. 2. He’s also considering working on a second project, one that might be better off on the “naughty” list: a Smashing Pumpkins Christmas album.
Speaking with USA Today about what he planned to do after the Pumpkins wrap their current 30th anniversary tour, Corgan said we can expect more from the classic lineup. “We’re already talking about tour stuff for next year, so there will be more Pumpkins shows in 2019,” he promised. “But for me, once we get off tour, I’m either going to be doing some writing in LA with some friends or going back to Chicago to start writing new Smashing Pumpkins.”
So that’s the good news. Here’s where it gets weird: “I also have an inkling to try and get us to do a Christmas record one day, so I might try to use the Christmas spirit to put the record together in concept, even if we’re not ready to record it,” he added.
Corgan’s unique, gothic vocals are perfect for the kind of alternative rock Pumpkins are known for — and hey, considering the name of the band, maybe a Halloween album wouldn’t be out of line. But that leathery voice doesn’t exactly scream “Christmas carols.” That said, he has released holiday music before, and he said he’d want to re-record those tracks alongside new originals and classic songs.
“It would be probably lean more acoustic. I would think it’s a bit weird [to make] a wild Christmas records,” Corgan continued. “Although, I also like ‘Jingle Bell Rock’, which is basically 1950s rockabilly. But I don’t know. When I think Christmas music, I tend to think something you want to put on and sit around the tree with the kids and not rock out to. I don’t see us doing a rocking-out Christmas album.”
Why does this idea feel like it would be an aural lump of coal?
Revisit one of Smashing Pumpkins’ past attempts at holiday cheer, “Christmastime”, below.