Thursday, November 28, 2013

CD Review: Do You Hear, What I Hear?...New Christmas Music

Now that the Christmas season has officially begun, let's run through some new releases that may have been overlooked when they were released earlier on October. First, from Columbia Records we get the latest album from one of the timeless voices of the last decade, Susan Boyle. She released her second holiday album on October 29th entitled "Home For Christmas."

The twelve-song album begins with Boyle duetting with none other than, Elvis Presley on "O Come All Ye Faithful." Their voices seemed to match perfectly as if Elvis was in the studio singing with Boyle into the same microphone. She also receives help from The Overtones on "Little Drummer Boy" and the legendary Johnny Mathis on "When I Child Is Born." Her voice alone are enough to capture the spirit of Christmas with her versions of "I'll Be Home For Christmas" and "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas." She opens up her vocals on the choir-filled "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing," before closing with the original song "Miracle Hymn" from Boyle's first movie "The Christmas Candle."

To find out more information on this new album from Susan Boyle, please visit susanboylemusic.com.

The other latest holiday release from Columbia Records is from the legendary voice of Johnny Mathis. His latest holiday release is entitled "Sending You A Little Christmas" and features a load of special guests including Natalie Cole, Billy Joel, Jim Brickman and even Susan Boyle on a different song that is featured on her new Christmas album.

We begin with Mathis's smooth vocals being accompanied by Billy Joel on one of his Joel's newest recordings of "The Christmas Song." Natalie Cole lends her sweet voice to "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas," before Johnny Mathis is accented perfectly by Jim Brickman's piano on "Sending You A Little Christmas." Gloria Estefan adds a little pop in "Mary's Boy Child," while Susan Boyle and Mathis fit together wonderfully on "Do You Hear What I Hear." The album closes with Mathis performing the medley of "I'll Be Home For Christmas/White Christmas" with Vince Gill and Amy Grant, and "Count Your Blessings (Instead Of Sheep)," which was made famous by Bing Crosby.

To find out more about Johnny Mathis' newest holiday album, please visit johnnymathis.com.

The hit AMC television series "Mad Men" released their first holiday compilation on October 8th through Concord Records. It features ten Christmas classics like Dean Martin's "Baby It's Cold Outside," Tony Bennett's "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas" and Rosemary Clooney's "White Christmas." Two of the newer songs on this compilation are "A Beautiful Mine (The Mad Men Theme)" from RJD2 and Jessica Pare's "Zou Bisou Bisou," remixed by IAMX.

The release features a great collection of holiday classics from the sixties and was available exclusively through Target stores nationwide. To find out more about 'Mad Men Christmas," please visit http://blogs.amctv.com/mad-men/2013/11/mad-men-christmas-cd-now-available/.

The Concord Music Group is also responsible for turning one the most popular Christmas albums of all time into a holiday decoration with the "Snoopy Doghouse Edition" of "A Charlie Brown Christmas." It features the same remastered album that was released last holiday season, but this year that added a fun special touch to the artwork. The cardboard digipak case folds out to recreate Snoopy's doghouse from the TV special. Also included are cut-outs of Charlie Brown, Linus, Lucy and of course Snoopy. The music was newly remastered last year from the original recordings and they have never sounded better on CD.

So, if you passed over last year's release, here it is again, but updated with a little more holiday cheer to enjoy. To find out more, please visit http://www2.concordmusicgroup.com/albums/A-Charlie-Brown-Christmas-Snoopy-Doghouse-Edition/.

Last, but not least, we get the latest release from the independent music group, The Alex Tjoland Band with their holiday album "Silent Revelry." It features nine original songs including the up-tempo "God In Us, Emmanuel" and the fun surf-guitar instrumental "Surf's Up, Santa Clause." They do an outstanding job on the traditional "Silent Night" and showcase their bluesy rock side with "Blind Man." The heart of the album is in the meaningful sounds of "This Picture Of You" and the blazing guitar rock of "Mercy."

To find out more about this underground music act, please visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Alex-Tjoland-Band/278430608843640.

1 comment:

Israel @ Jam n Bop said...

I feel like Susan Boyle's album got lost in the sea of new unnecessary Christmas albums including Kelly Clarkson's and Leona Lewis's, but I think that Susan's will go on and become timeless.