Friday, December 02, 2011

Christmas music (part 1 of 2)

I hate the same old pap that's brought out as muzak at Christmas time... Slade... Wizard... Mariah Carey... all have been done to death, IMHO.

So it is around this time of year that I go hunting for meaningful or new-to-me Christmas music. So far I've found some good recordings to complement those already in my collection... and wanted to share them with you:


The Lower Lights :: "Come let us adore him"

Christmas carols and songs in their trademark folky sound. Their awesome harmonies, for example, save "White Christmas" from the mundane... and their instrumentation differentiates "little drummer boy" and makes it their own. I love this band and eagerly welcome this album.


So Elated :: "Bewildering Light"

Christmas isn't Christmas for me without this album. Ben Thomas and gang created an album full of mystery, hope and searching that is simply timeless. A welcome addition to any collection, imho.


Vince Guaraldi :: "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (pictured at the top)

Nothing puts a smile faster on my face than this album... it has a real sense of fun and movement to it, and I love it. Haven't seen the show in ages but the jazzy instrumentation and expressive rhythms on this soundtrack sound as fresh as ever.


Low :: "Christmas"

I find this EP dark and downcast but filled with heartfelt meaning... real emotion can be found among the wall-of-sound distortion fuzz and slow acoustic moments. The EP is a fab mix of the playful and the poignant... they even have Christmas bells in the opening song... which is fun.


Sleeping at last :: Christmas Collection

Picked up this album recently from noisetrade and have really enjoyed their folky acoustic soundscapes. Their version of "what child is this" is breathtaking in its scope and grandeur. I feel this album will become part of Christmas for me like the others above.


I'll share more soon... hunting for these will keep you busy for a wee while.

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