"Christmas at the Airport"
From Nick Lowe's Quality Street
Liner notes: The pub-rock vet portrays a stranded traveler on this wry toe-tapper from possibly the least festive Christmas album ever.
Behind the music: In the '70s, Lowe produced upstart artists like Elvis Costello and the Damned. His own music has evolved from snarky pop to a heartfelt rootsy style, reflecting the influence of former father-in-law Johnny Cash, who recorded Lowe's "The Beast in Me."
Check it out if you like: Thoughtful vets like Robyn Hitchcock and Rodney Crowell.
This review originally appeared in our November/December 2013 issue of Mother Jones.