Daily Archives: October 13, 2009

Jesus Wept: My Review of Christmas from the Heart

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Major, major props to David for singing songs I’ve heard every holiday season as if I’m hearing them for the first time.  Mad, mad talent I tell you!

But, before I start blathering on like the incoherent mess I am, having bawled like a baby listening to “What Child is This,” I feel I owe Jeff an apology.

That’s right. I’m going to overlook, for the moment, the anger I had felt over Reikigate and acknowledge that I was misguided in my overwhelming skepticism upon learning that he was executive producer of this fabulous Christmas masterpiece of an album.  Whatever flaws this individual might have, there is no denying his skillful ear and commitment in presenting David in the best musical light possible, from including Kurt Bestor on the production to traveling to Prague to record awesome orchestral accompaniments that complement David’s beautifully impressive vocals.  

I have always said what David needs most is the right kind of musical production to highlight his superb vocal gifts, and this album is one heck of a treat.

From the opening hymns – “Joy to the World,” “Angels We Have Heard on High,” and “O Come All Ye Faithful” – to the hair-raising crescendos on “O Holy Night” to the jazzy secular carols.  David’s duet with Charice on “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” is downright sexy, and his follow-up ditty, “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” made me appreciate a carol that I used to loathe – especially considering how he puts his own Soul David licks on it.  The upbeat and creative approach to “Pat-a-Pan” is quite groovy, and I’m loving the Spanish accents (both in words and musical accompaniments) on “Riu Riu Chiu.”

And then there is “What Child is This.”  Oh.  My.  Heck… There are no words to properly describe how profound, how truly awe-inspiring and transcendental this carol has become.  Just… No Words. And, the production on this one…GAH!!! This so needs to be on somebody’s movie soundtrack for any movie that features a Christmas scene.

I wish I had waited to hear “Ave Maria,” but the boys’ choir accompanying David on this hymn makes it a stand out among so many incredibly stunning gems on one album.

The finale, “Melodies of Christmas,” an original song is quite nice and I imagine, if played on radio often enough over the holidays, could become a crowd pleaser, but it pales in comparison to the vocal arrangements on the other songs.  However, as a finale, it sums up the theme of the album quite nicely.  I would even venture to say “Melodies of Christmas” might have made a better album title.  

I must say, as an aside, it feels good to play this music in a new home, and I’m looking forward to Christmas.  I can’t wait for the holidays! Even though celebrating it early works for me too! 

Now, since TeDA did a great job with the album, I hope the promos are just as fantastic.  I, for one, would love to hear “Riu Riu Chiu,” “What Child is This,” “O Holy Night,” and “Pat-a-Pan” on radio, I’d love to see David and Charice perform during the lighting of the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center and on Oprah, and I sooooooo want to see David perform with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir this Christmas season, perhaps on one of PBS’s holiday specials. I would hope that Kurt Bestor can make it happen!

*Promotional Video by Jennifer Barry.

Christmas from the Heart Twitter Trending Party

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When: Tonight, 7 pm EST.

Tag:  #ArchuletaXmasCD

For those that are into Twitter, this is definitely a worthwhile event! 🙂