Ah, the holiday season. It’s the perfect time to bake some cookies, wrap presents, and listen to Christmas music. Some Christmas songs are happy, celebrating the joy of the season, but others speak to the less-than-happy parts of the holidays despite a catchy melody. Wham!’s “Last Christmas” fits in the latter category, and there’s perhaps no better artist to take on the song than Best Ex, the new project of Candy Hearts’ Mariel Loveland. Best Ex’s version of “Last Christmas” keeps the spirit of the original song while adding a bit of bite to its saccharine feeling; it’s the perfect blend of a holiday classic with her signature indie-pop / pop-punk sound.

Speaking on her choice of the cover, Loveland says, “I chose “Last Christmas” because it’s one of those songs that makes you instantly happy, the second you hear it, unless you’re a grinch or something who hates Christmas music…. But this even works on that level because it’s the anti-Christmas song. It’s heartbreaking and the love interest isn’t even likable. The person is described as little more than exceptionally cruel and cold. I’m also a sucker for ’80s camp and Hallmark Christmas movies, which is the stuff this song is made of. I wanted to keep those vibes in my version of the song while dirtying up that pristine pop sound a bit.”

Listen to Best Ex’s version of “Last Christmas” here. If you enjoy what you hear, check out their debut album Ice Cream Anti-Social, out now via Alcopop Records. Best Ex is now signed to No Sleep Records and plans to release new music in 2018. Make sure you’re following Substream on Twitter so you don’t miss any updates.