Jason: Ahhh, David Archuleta. Another one of the year’s “big” Christmas releases. I don’t understand a year that groups Sting, Tori Amos and David Archuleta together.
Jeff: When we were in Rhode Island over Thanksgiving, I saw the commercial for this album about a thousand times. Leah’s mom loves VH1 in the morning.
Jason: I’m sorry to hear that.
Jeff: Not as sorry as I was to hear Norah Jones’ “Chasing Pirates” a dozen times in two hours.
Jason: I don’t watch American Idol, so I admit to not knowing much about David Archuleta.
Jeff: Yeah, I’ve never seen it.
Jason: I know I would have been fine going on with my life had he not released a Christmas album.
Jeff: All I know is that David Archuleta looks like a Tolkien character.
Jason: Yes! You are absolutely right!
Jeff: Is he even old enough to drive?
Jason: Oh my God, I think that might be the third Tolkien reference this Mellowmas.
Jeff: No way!
Jason: I think I’ve referenced Mordor a few times.
Jason: Because both Sting and Tori sounded like they came from there.
Jeff: Well, I can’t help it. I look at him and I think of Elijah Wood. Who, by the way, scares the crap out of me.
Jason: Look at that smile on the cover.
Jason: “I promise not to offend you! Buy my record!”
Jeff: Ha ha ha! “Look at all the happy snowflakes, moms!”
Jason: I’m imagining mothers listening to this, dreaming of their daughters growing up and dating someone just like David Archuleta.
Jeff: Has Archuleta released a real album, or did he get so cornholed with his first record deal that this is his debut?
Jason: Hell if I know!
Jeff: Huh. Would you look at that.
Jason: No, I would not.
Jeff: His debut, the thrillingly titled David Archuleta, came out last year. How did we miss this? Oh, wait, I know how.
Jeff: BECAUSE WE’RE AWESOME.
Jason: That’s right! At least, we WERE awesome. Until today. What the hell. We gave Ali Lohan, Hilary Duff, Miley Cyrus, Ashley Tisdale and something called a Leighton Meester their due. We might as well just go the distance.
Jeff: Why not Christmas from the Vagina, right?
Jason: Ha! Yes! Let’s do it!
David Archuleta — Melodies of Christmas (download)
Jason: This is the only original track on the album. Of course, it’s already ripping off three other fucking songs.
Jeff: I cannot stop looking at the album cover.
Jeff: I think it’s making my beard fall out. Clay Aiken sounds like ZZ Top next to this.
Jason: He totally just sang a line of “Come All Ye Faithful” in the background! David Archuleta is covering all his bases, y’all!
Jeff: I wish he’d cover his mouth!
Jason: Jesus, we’re two minutes in, and I’m just sitting here stunned.
Jeff: I know, right?
Jason: I almost don’t know what to say. Because it’s just so….pandering.
Jeff: This is as close to musical Play-Doh as I hope I ever get.
Jason: I like original Christmas songs, and by original Christmas songs, I mean songs that convey an original thought.
Jeff: It’s all squishy and it smells like a nine-year-old girl’s stationery.
Jason: Aw fuck, I think that was a key change.
Jeff: Son of a bitch, I thought it was ending!
Jason: It’s a Very Recycled Christmas in the Archuleta household.
Jeff: “Silent Night” just made an appearance.
Jason: I think I know why all these other songs are showing up. He’s betting most people won’t listen to any of the other tracks. So he figures he should just get ’em all in here.
Jeff: I’m reading his bio now, and here’s why I will never believe in God:
“Archuleta is writing a memoir tentatively titled Chords of Strength, a “reference to the partial vocal paralysis he suffered in 2004 but has now fully recovered from.””
Jason: Oh no.
Jeff: David Archuleta ALMOST suffered complete vocal paralysis. But instead, he recovered. And recorded this. After winning a 2008 Teen Choice Award for Most Fanatic Fans.
Jason: I bet they all love this album. There’s absolutely nothing interesting on it. I should know. I listened to the entire thing. Every song was lamer than the one that came before it. All bland.
Jeff: Was this the last song?
Jeff: Please tell me it was the last song.
Jason: It was.
Jeff: Oh, thank Go — er, I’m so glad.
Jason: His cover of “Riu Riu Chiu” wasn’t that bad.
Jeff: I don’t want to hear you say that.
Jason: I think the only reason I tolerated it was because I haven’t heard anybody cover it since the Monkees. He does another obscure song called “Pat-A-Pan” that’s pretty awful.
Jeff: David Archuleta, unearthing obscure Christmas songs!
Jason: The rest are all the same old shit. “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (with Charice Pempengco)”
Jason: What the hell is a Pempengco?
Jeff: I think it’s what you wipe after you take a Leighton Meester. It’s very important to have a clean Pempengco.
Jason: THAT IS EXACTLY WHAT I WAS GOING TO SAY!
Jeff: Hey, he does “What Child Is This,” which is probably what his poor father says every day.
Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” is more of a threat here.
Jeff: Imagine if that creepy little Hobbit was living down the hall from you? Imagine looking across the dinner table and seeing that blank, awful smile.
Jason: I feel like I could throw poo at him and he’d still be sitting there. Smiling.
Jeff: You would just know that one day, you’d wake up in the middle of the night and he’d be lurching toward you like the girl from The Ring. And singing “Riu Riu Chiu.”
Jason: I threw Leighton Meester at my Archuleta and it didn’t even affect his Pempengco.
Jeff: Well, I think you have to Pat-A-Pan the Pempengco first.
Jason: You know, I remember listening to this album for the first time. I was at the gym, and suddenly, I hated everything about everything. And I’m not joking, one of the guys there asked me what was wrong, because I had a scowl on my face.
Jeff: The dark power of Archuleta. Did you hand him an earbud? Please tell me you did.
Jason: Are you kidding? He would have kicked my ass!
Jeff: Tell me you handed him an earbud and asked him to spot you. “It’s okay — it’s an obscure Monkees cover.”
Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha! I’d have a broken nose! He would have Meestered the shit out of me.
Jeff: Make sure you cover your Pempengco!
Jason: I feel awful having listened to this. I’m going back to Lemmy. Or Halford.
Jeff: Yeah, I feel kind of sick.
Jason: Actually, I’m just going to think about Lemmy meeting David Archuleta. And how that meeting would have gone.
Jeff: Imagining Lemmy snapping Archuleta in two is making me feel better.
Jason: “C’mere, you little fruit!”
Jeff: Archuleta seems like he’d be about the right height to work as Lemmy’s mike stand.
Jason: And he’d just…smile. “It’s okay, Lemmy.”
Jeff: Covered with a fine mist of whiskey and phlegm.
Jason: “You can beat me up. Buy my record.”
Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m going to try and forget today ever happened.
Jeff: Yeah, good luck with that. I know I’m having nightmares about this cover photo.
Jason: Is this album doing well in the charts?
Jeff: It peaked at #30. And his version of “Have Yourself a Merry Little Pempengco” is something of an AC hit.
Jason: It is? Why? Who needs another bland version of that song?
Jeff: Because menopause robs people of musical taste?
Jason: wild applause
Jeff Giles Explains Adult Contemporary, Film at Eleven.
Jeff: Speaking of menopause and taste, Erlewine gave this three stars.
Jason: Oh man, he did? You are back on my shit list, Erlewine!
Jeff: “He was born to slickly sing sentimental standards, which is all he does here.”
Jason: So why is that worthy of three stars? There is no God.
Jeff: How long before David Archuleta starts cutting Songbook records? Can’t you just hear him singing “Someone to Watch Over Me”? I can, and I want to die.
Jason: Even worse, it’s going to be like David Archuleta Sings the ’90s Songbook. David Archuleta doing “Sex and Candy.” And “Closing Time.” Aren’t I just ruining your day?
Jeff: I might actually buy that.
Jeff: Would he cover “Nookie,” too?
Jason: He’d change it to “I didn’t do it at all for the nookie.” Can’t upset the moms.
Jeff: David Archuleta Sings the Grunge Songbook.
Jason: David Archuleta Covers Metal Machine Music.
Jeff: I would pay $15.99 to hear David Archuleta sing “Even Flow.”
Jason: Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!
Jeff: Now that you’ve heard both, which is worse — this or Metal Machine Music?
Jason: They both make me nauseous in completely different ways. I didn’t even know my nausea had variations until I heard this album. For Christmas, I’m contacting the record company and having them send you a six-foot cardboard cut-out of Archuleta. I think it might be my best gift idea yet.
Jeff: I’ll contact Lou Reed and have him move in with you. HE’LL DO IT, TOO.
Jason: Okay, okay, I’m sorry! I won’t do it!
Jeff: And Laurie Anderson will be there, too!
Jason: Now you’re just being an asshole.
Jeff: I think I might have an inflamed Pempengco.