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Combustible Edison

Combustible Edison

What to do if you've been slogging away in the rock underground for a decade to slight critical acclaim without making any appreciable artistic or commercial headway? In the mold of David Johansen/Buster Poindexter, the band Christmas decided to retool themselves as lounge lizards. On their debut album, the Providence, RI, group played cocktail jazz, exotica, torch ballads, and B-movie spy/guitar themes. To complete their transformation, the band adopted ice cream-colored tuxedoes in their live performances; one member of the group adopted the pseudonym "the Millionaire," and former Christmas singer Liz Cox called herself "Miss Lily Banquette" as she crooned languid jazz-pop tunes. After debuting in 1994 with I, Swinger, Combustible Edison issued Schizophonic in 1996, followed two years later by The Impossible World. — Richie Unterberger.

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