Bright Eyes - A Christmas Album
Combine Christmas tunes with Indie blues and the result is Saddle-Creek records present to their fans: A Christmas Album, released in 2002. The album takes traditional Christmas songs and offers renditions performed and arranged by Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst and Maria Taylor, along with the help of their fellow Saddle-Creek friends. The artists refrain from releasing another album of hackneyed commercialized Christmas songs, instead playing the more traditional, though solemn, tracks like “Away in a Manger,” “Oh Little Town of Bethlehem,” and “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.”
Despite this, many of the album’s songs ring with joy, notably “Silver Bells” and “Blue Christmas.” The former is sung with a choir as trumpets blare and tambourines resound, while the latter holds Oberst’s most genuine and sober vocals singing over the reverbs of his electric guitar. However, A Christmas Album is brought to another level with the songs from Maria Taylor. Her soft, lulling vocals on tracks like “White Christmas” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” become the focal point of the album, as the sparse instrumentation lets her voice carry the songs. When the instrumentation does kick in, though, cellos and violins add to the intimacy of her voice, while the piano notes quietly echo in the background.
Ask for A Christmas Album this December; it will be a present enjoyable even after the winter fades.
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