Buy Music CDs at CD Universe. Audio Samples and Reviews Available on Music New Releases 

 

     

 

Custom Search on all Musicomania.ca

 

   

 

Note: If you can read french, go to the french section for additional content.

 

to SEARCH this page

 

 

 

         

 

 

 

 

2017:

 

 Emilie-Claire Barlow – Lumières d’hiver

Emilie-Claire Barlow – Lumières d’hiver

For this album, the 12th of her career, it was important for Emilie-Claire Barlow to present several songs in French to the Canadian English market. Lumières d’hiver incorporates a mix of Christmas songs and other hymns of the winter time. You can hear some classics in English like "I'll Be Home for Christmas" and "Please Come Home for Christmas". But it is especially the French pieces that catch attention: "Combien de Noël?", "Noël blanc" and the excellent "Marie Noël". One can even discover a French version of "The Christmas Waltz", as well as two duets: with Ingrid St-Pierre (Wilson Philips’ "Hey Santa" in a French version) and with Mitsou Gélinas (Renée Martel’s "As-tu vu le Père Noël?"). Finally, there are three original songs, all in French, including the title track. The album was produced, arranged and orchestrated by Emilie-Claire and her great accomplice, Steve Webster. The result is a warm winter album that will add a special atmosphere to your holiday parties in front of the fire place. (December 2017)

Empress / SIX

½

 

 Florence K – A New Christmas

Florence K – A New Christmas

Florence K offers a gift to her fans for the Christmas period. She presents a bilingual six-track EP containing only original songs written specifically for this time of the year. There are two duets with Stefie Shock for "Mon bel amour" and "A New Christmas Song". The young sisters of Florence, Éléonore and Ariane Lagacé, also participate in four songs as backup singers. The record boasts prominent arrangements, in addition to incorporating a full section of brass. Here is a new kind of Christmas record that you will enjoy discovering. (December 2017)

Universal

½

 The Lost Fingers – Coconut Christmas

The Lost Fingers – Coconut Christmas

Following last year success of Christmas Caravan, the Quebec City gypsy jazz band returns with a new Holiday album. What made the success of the first record was certainly the originality of the interpretations of classics that are often heard, as well as less known songs. This is still the case with Coconut Christmas, which contains favorites such as "Feliz Navidad", "Sleigh Ride", "Blue Christmas" and "Jingle Bell Rock". The band also offers us a warm version of U2's "New Year's Day". Once again produced by American John Jorgenson (Elton John, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson), the album still has a very festive atmosphere for a Christmas time of pure pleasure. (December 2017)

L-A be / SIX

½

 

 Katherine Penfold – Keep Christmas With You

Katherine Penfold – Keep Christmas With You

Vancouver-based Nova Scotian singer and songwriter Katherine Penfold presents a collection of Christmas classics on Keep Christmas With You. There are 10 standards in great warm and modern versions. These include "Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow", "The Christmas Song", "White Christmas", "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas". One can also discover a classic to come with Donny Hathaway's "This Christmas" and the title track, the holiday classic from Sesame Street. Here is an excellent album to warm up your cold holiday evenings. (December 2017)

Justin Time / SIX

½

 

 Sia – Everyday is Christmas

Sia – Everyday is Christmas

After 15 years of career, the Australian pop singer presents a first Christmas album. Indeed, it is a pop album containing exclusively original songs whose only pretext reminds us of Christmas, as well as the occasional use of Christmas bells. Sia tries to give us a contemporary Christmas album and in that sense, it's successful. Otherwise, few tracks offer any excitement whatsoever and creativity is not often included. We can hear some dynamic songs that make us smile ("Santa's Coming for Us", "Candy Cane Lane"), but when she arrives with tearful ballads in the Adele style ("Snowman", "Snowflake"), Sia becomes frankly annoying. She talks to children with "Puppies Are Forever" and to adults with "Ho Ho Ho". The set, which she wrote with her faithful collaborator Greg Kurstin, unfortunately has a great lack of coherence and lame references for a holiday album. Everyday is Christmas must be considered as another pop album by Sia, and it ranks among the weakest of her career. (December 2017)

Atlantic / Warner

½

   

 A Capitol Christmas, Vol. 2

A Capitol Christmas, Vol. 2

As part of Capitol Records' 75th anniversary celebrations, the record company is offering us the second volume of this Christmas collection, after the success of last year’s first edition. Once again there are great classics by renowned artists such as the Beach Boys, Glen Campbell, Dinah Shore, Johnny Mercer, Wayne Newton, and the duo of Les Paul and Mary Ford. Among the Christmas classics that can be rediscovered are "Jingle Bell Rock", "Blue Christmas", "Jingle Bells", "Winter Wonderland", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", "Silver Bells", "White Christmas" and many others. There are 24 in all, mostly original recordings of the time, but also some remixes. For those who still prefer good old-fashioned holiday classics to contemporary versions, here is an excellent collection, which complements volume one perfectly. (December 2017)

Capitol / Universal

½

   

 

2016:

 

 Andra Day – Merry Christmas From Andra Day

Andra DayMerry Christmas From Andra Day

The soul singer Andra Day has decided to offer us her version of Christmas classics, but in small quantity. She releases an EP of only five tracks. On the other hand, the pieces offered are of high quality. One can first hear "Someday at Christmas" in duet with Stevie Wonder. Then she performs a unique version of "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen", followed by the excellent "Winter Wonderland" and "Carol of the Bells". The conclusion with "The First Noël" is a little more agreed, but the fact remains that the EP is a very interesting modern alternative to all these classic versions too often heard. (December 2016)

Warner

½

   

 Neil Diamond – Acoustic Christmas

Neil Diamond Acoustic Christmas

At the dawn of his 76th birthday, legendary Neil Diamond presents one of the most interesting Christmas albums of 2016. He replays classics of this period of the year in acoustic version, while preserving the very essence of the songs. The best example is the opening track, "O Holy Night", which quickly convinces us of the relevance of the album, in addition to making us eager to hear the rest. It must be said that he is not alone on the guitar but can count on a full band of musicians, which gives great amplitude to these classics. In addition to the traditional songs, you can hear some songs a little rarer, as well as a new original, "Christmas Prayers". The album is completed in a great and energetic medley which is simply not long enough with hardly more than three minutes. Here is an excellent re-reading of Christmas classics by a great character in the history of music. (December 2016)

Capitol / Universal

½

   

 Brett Eldredge – Glow

Brett EldredgeGlow

The American country singer becomes a crooner for this Christmas album where he comes to play in Michael Bublé’s territory. It includes classics like "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!", "Baby, It's Cold Outside", "I'll Be Home for Christmas", "White Christmas", "Winter Wonderland", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and "Silent Night". There is only one original song, the title song. Eldredge is accompanied by a piano and brass, and he offers music fairly typical of this time of year, without great surprises. (December 2016)

Atlantic / Warner

   

 Amy Grant – Tennessee Christmas

Amy GrantTennessee Christmas

Recognized as one of the best Christian music singers, Amy Grant issues her first Christmas album in nearly 20 years. The album begins with a new version of her classic, the title song. There are six new songs and Christmas classics such as "White Christmas", "O Come, All Ye Faithful" and "Joy to the World". Recorded in her home studio, Tennessee Christmas offers gentle arrangements for an intimate atmosphere, perfect for a holiday night in front of a fireplace. Amy Grant presents an original Christmas album, different from what is usually heard at this time of year. It is a record that is likely to have a life outside the holidays and for several years to come. (December 2016)

Universal

½

   

 The Lost Fingers – Christmas Caravan

The Lost FingersChristmas Caravan

For their sixth album in total, The Lost Fingers issue a first Christmas record. Produced by American John Jorgenson (Elton John, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, Pavarotti), Christmas Caravan is a new kind of Christmas album that carries us around the world. There are many recognized classics performed in their own way like "White Christmas", "Frosty the Snowman" and "Go Tell It on the Mountain". But there are also songs from elsewhere such as "Mele Kalikimaka" and "Auld Lang Syne". On this last track, we can hear a famous collaborator in Biréli Lagrène, one of the best gypsy jazz guitarists in the world and heir to the throne after Django Reinhardt. Other contributors include Spanish German Lopez (on timple), Iranian Amir Amiri (on santour), Quebecer Kattam (on percussion), and singer Kim Richardson. With a choice of songs from different countries and different eras, it is definitely a Christmas album as rarely heard. So much so that it is a record that we will enjoy listening to throughout the year. Christmas Caravan seems to go in all directions, but it still has a lot of songs of great quality and especially beautiful arrangements that make it irresistible. An excellent record, and a very nice surprise! In addition, the whole is presented in a beautiful case for the CD version. (December 2016)

Music Video: « White Christmas »

L-A be / SIX

½

 

 Sarah McLachlan – Wonderland

Sarah McLachlanWonderland

Ten years ago, Canadian Sarah McLachlan gave us Wintersong, and she hands it over today with a new Christmas album. On Wonderland, she offers a personal interpretation of 13 traditional and more contemporary Christmas songs. Produced by her faithful collaborator Pierre Marchand, the album presents somewhat reinvented versions of classics that were too often heard. In many cases, the exercise is particularly successful, but sometimes the original is quite distorted, like "Let It Snow" for example. "The Christmas Song", "Angels We Have Heard On High", "White Christmas", "Winter Wonderland", "Silver Bells", "O Holy Night" and "Amazing Grace" can be heard. Among the contributors are Emmylou Harris and Martha Wainwright who add their voices to "Go Tell It On the Mountain", members of Half Moon Run who play on five tracks, as well as the Bulgarian Symphony Orchestra accompanying her for three songs. Despite some less brilliant moments, the magic operates on several occasions during the album for a very pleasant Christmas atmosphere. (December 2016)

Verve / Universal

   

 Kacey Musgraves – A Very Kacey Christmas

Kacey MusgravesA Very Kacey Christmas

The Texas country singer offers us her very personal version of Christmas. A Very Kacey Christmas presents Christmas in a retro version, with a touch of country but mostly influences from the 1950s and 1960s. There are also touches of exoticism, such as Hawaiian ("A Willie Nice Christmas" Featuring Willie Nelson) and Latin influences ("Feliz Navidad"). In fact, Kacey does not dwell too much on the classics even if we find some ("Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", "Let It Snow"). She explores songs from elsewhere or less known, in addition to offering some original, including the excellent "Christmas Makes Me Cry". It is therefore a very good album which is likely to be interesting to listen to every year for a long time. (December 2016)

Universal

½

   

 Straight No Chaser – I’ll Have Another… Christmas Album

Straight No ChaserI’ll Have Another… Christmas Album

The group of 10 singers could not help but offer us a new Christmas album, their third. Straight No Chaser present a style that adapts perfectly to this time of the year. They offer a Capella versions of classics, as well as some more modern tracks. Classics include "Joy to the World", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and "Winter Wonderland". One can also hear more pop pieces like Mariah Carey’s "All I Want for Christmas Is You" and Kenny Rogers’ "The Greatest Gift of All". Finally, the band introduces us to a new composition, "Feels Like Christmas" featuring Jana Kramer. For a different Christmas where the voice is in the spotlight, Straight No Chaser is always a great choice. (December 2016)

Atlantic / Warner

   

 A Capitol Christmas

A Capitol Christmas

Here is a compilation of some of the greatest Christmas classics by legendary artists who have helped immortalize these versions often repeated since without such success. You can hear Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Ella Fitzgerald, Johnny Mercer, Peggy Lee, Bing Crosby and many others. There are 24 unavoidable classics of the genre, that have rocked the Christmas of our childhood, no matter our age. (December 2016)

Capitol / Universal

   

 

2015:

 

 

AstrocolorLit Up: Music For Christmas

Here is a new genre or deconstructed Christmas album! The collective from the Canadian West Coast offers indeed classics for this festive season, but in its own style of indie pop / jazz electro and ambient. The result is that some of these songs that were heard too often prove to be difficult to recognize at first and take a whole new meaning. There are 10 essentials of the genre as "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer", "Sleigh Ride", "Silent Night", "Let it Snow! Let it Snow!" and "The Little Drummer Boy". As a bonus, three of these songs are repeated, but in radio versions. To accompany the band, we can hear singers from their entourage as Antonia Freybe-Smith, Abi Rose, Rykka and Kandle. This is a very good album that is perfect to play as background music at a party with friends, even outside the Christmas period. (December 2015)

Last Gang

½

 

 Kylie Minogue – Kylie Christmas

Kylie MinogueKylie Christmas

For her first holiday album, Kylie is accompanied by a big band to sing many classics in the Vegas cabaret style. Otherwise, the arrangements vary in different occasions with more pop songs and ballads. There are 13 in all including some lesser known tracks and three original songs. Among the must, there is "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year", "Santa Claus is Coming To Town" (in a virtual duet with Frank Sinatra), "Winter Wonderland", "Let It Snow" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas". There are also two duets: with James Corden for Yaz’ "Only You" and more surprising, with Iggy Pop for The Waitresses’ "Christmas Wrapping". With Kylie Christmas, Kylie has the advantage of offering a different album of all that can be heard at this season. On the other hand, frequent changes of styles and arrangements make it a too varied album, which becomes disjointed. The only guideline here is Christmas. (December 2015)

Music Video: « Every Day’s Like Christmas »

Parlophone / Warner

     

 Gino Quilico – Secrets of Christmas

Gino Quilico Secrets of Christmas

Accompanied by the Ensemble Triosphere, baritone Gino Quilico performs Christmas classics in French, English and Italian. More contemporary songs can be heard as "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", "Noël blanc" and "Minuit, Chrétiens", but also several traditional songs and true classics of César Franck ("Panis Angelicus"), Franz Schubert ( "Ave Maria" by Louis Quilico), etc. The CD ends with a medley of three songs: "The Christmas Song", "White Christmas" and "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas". This medley and two other tracks are interpreted in duet with Louis Quilico, his late father. All the songs with Louis Quilico date back to 1992, have been recorded with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and have been remastered for the occasion. We can also hear a duet with his daughter Sofia Quilico for the traditional play "A la Nanita Nana". Here is a great Christmas album, a true classic! (December 2015)

Analekta

 

 

2014:

 

 Blue Rodeo – A Merrie Christmas to You

Blue RodeoA Merrie Christmas to You

The Toronto band lends its country rock style to Christmas music fans. The 36-minute album recorded in a week contains some Christmas classics like the excellent "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and "O Come All Ye Faithful", but also covers of Big Star, Merle Haggard and Paul Simon. The set alternates between ballads and little more rhythmic songs, but in all cases, these are songs that can be listened to throughout the year, not just during the Holiday season. Otherwise, the CD is somewhat uneven, despite some very good times. (November 2014)

Warner

 Measha Brueggergosman – Christmas

Measha Brueggergosman Christmas

The soprano born in Fredericton, New Brunswick leaves aside opera to present a Christmas album with mainly soul and gospel. Her voice remains as powerful, while it may even be intimidating at times so deep it is. She offers several essential classics including "The Christmas Song", "The Little Drummer Boy" and "Minuit, chrétiens". Measha also gives us some lesser known songs. The project received key arrangements with beautiful orchestrations. In exchange, it sometimes seems to have some discrepancy between her voice and the music, as if the two were independent instead of being as one. Measha Brueggergosman still offers us interesting interpretations of these classics. (November 2014)

Warner

 Chic Gamine – Christmas Vol. 1

Chic GamineChristmas Vol. 1

The quintet Chic Gamine was formed in Winnipeg in 2007. After a few albums, they use the holiday season to present a first Christmas EP. They offer an excellent blend of folk and pop, English and French. You can hear three original songs and two covers for a total of nearly 20 minutes. Despite the topics discussed and some bells, the record has not much of Christmas in reality it may well be played year round. In fact, it mostly seems an excuse to try to reach a new audience. (November 2014)

 Peter Furler – Christmas

Peter FurlerChristmas

The songwriter and performer from Australia releases his first Christmas album. He collaborated with pianist David Ian to give us a warm jazz album that will create a great atmosphere in your home not only for Christmas, but for the entire holiday season. Furler has a strong tendency towards Christian music and it can be heard on this album with Christmas classics, often a little less known, which find their basis in religion. The exception to it is "Little Drummer Boy". The CD ends beautifully with the excellent "Silent Night". Christmas lasts less than 30 minutes, but it is highly effective. (November 2014)

Prescott / Naxos

½

 Idina Menzel – Holiday Wishes

Idina MenzelHoliday Wishes

Broadway singer and actress Idina Menzel seems an obvious choice to perform Christmas songs. She therefore has a first album in the genre alternating classics and more contemporary songs in a symphonic pop style. Among the must, there are "The Christmas Song", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", "Silent Night" and "White Christmas" (with Kenny G). There are also the excellent "Do You Hear What I Hear", Mariah Carey’s "All I Want for Christmas is You", as well as a duet with Michael Bublé for "Baby It's Cold Outside". With Holiday Wishes, Idina Menzel offers a very good album in the genre, an album that takes you into a beautiful Christmas atmosphere. (November 2014)

Music Video: « Baby It’s Cold Outside »

Warner

½

 David Myles – It’s Christmas

David MylesIt’s Christmas

The singer and songwriter from the Maritimes releases a Christmas album in his own image, meaning this is rather varied. Effectively, he goes between pop, folk, bluegrass and jazz with a humor that is unique to him. He plays some of his favorite Christmas songs like "Let It Snow", "White Christmas" and "Silent Night", but he also allows himself to offer three original compositions: "Santa Never Brings Me a Banjo", "The Gift" and the title track. Here's a greatly entertaining album that will make your Christmas different and fun. A portion of the profits from the sale of the CD will be donated to Food Banks Canada. (November 2014)

Little Tiny / Fontana / SIX

½

 Caitriona O’Leary – The Wexford Carols

Caitriona O’LearyThe Wexford Carols

Irish soprano singer Caitriona O'Leary presents a dozen of the best Christmas Irish songs. Produced by Joe Henry, The Wexford Carols also features Tom Jones, Rosanne Cash and Rhiannon Giddens. The record offers a mix of Celtic music not only integrating Irish folk, but also American folk, blues and gospel. The link between the various songs and styles remains the crystalline voice of Caitriona which adapts very well to this context. (January 2015)

Heresy / Naxos

 Christmas at Downton Abbey (2 CD)

Christmas at Downton Abbey (2 CD)

In line with the successful TV series, here is nothing less than a double Christmas album in the same atmosphere. It includes classics by the Budapest Symphony Orchestra and the Choir of Kings College Cambridge. Actors Elizabeth McGovern (Lady Cora) and Julian Ovenden (Charles Blake) interpret many of the 45 songs offered, with the help of other big names of choral singing as Dame Kiri Te Kanawa. There is also a Christmas story recited by Jim Carter (Mr. Carson). As a bonus, you can hear an extended version of the series theme music by composer John Lunn, with a part to start each of the 2 CDs. Here is a classical Christmas album that will probably please fans of the genre, but surely the fans of the series. (November 2014)

Warner

 

2013:

 

Mary J. Blige – A Mary Christmas

Mary J. BligeA Mary Christmas

With this title, we are expecting a happy album from the R&B singer. But, the sad look on the cover and some downright depressing songs will not create the expected festive atmosphere. Musically, grandiose orchestrations by David Foster give a special scale to the album. Mary's voice is effective and carries much emotion. Otherwise, it is the choice of some songs that is not always good. We find anyway essential classics for the holiday season as "Little Drummer Boy", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", "The Christmas Song", "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and even "Petit Papa Noël" in French. You can hear duets with Barbra Streisand, Jessie J, The Clark Sisters and Mark Anthony. (November 2013)

Verve / Interscope / Universal

Il Volo – Buon Natale: The Christmas Album

Il VoloBuon Natale: The Christmas Album

Il Volo is a trio of young Italian tenors which began in 2011 and has released two albums since then. They now come to us with a Christmas album on which they remake American classics of the genre, songs not well known in Italy. You can hear among others "Ave Maria", "O Holy Night", "Silent Night", "White Christmas", "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" and "Rockin 'Around the Christmas Tree". They also make a medley including "Jingle Bell Rock", "Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!" and "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year". Their voices are perfect for the interpretation of great Christmas songs and they are accompanied by beautiful orchestrations even if they are quite sober. The album is kind of the soundtrack of a PBS TV special titled Il Volo Buon Natale. (November 2013)

Interscope / Universal

Johnny Reid – A Christmas Gift to You

Johnny ReidA Christmas Gift to You

The Scottish-born Canadian country pop singer presents his own version of some Christmas songs, sung in a great way with his unique voice and accompanied by rich orchestrations. You can hear among others "Angel We Have Heard On High", "O Holy Night", "Little Drummer Boy", "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas", and even a French / English duet with Isabelle Boulay for "Silent Night/Sainte Nuit". What differentiates mainly the album by Johnny Reid from most of the other releases in the genre is the addition of several original compositions with Bob Ezrin (the producer of the album) , as well as the addition of songs played less often as the excellent "Do You Hear What I Hear?", performed here with Peter Frampton. With A Christmas Gift to You, it is a true gift that offers Johnny Reid when he managed to concoct the perfect blend of Christmas classics and rare songs for the season. It therefore presents one of the best Christmas albums of 2013, a record that can practically be played all year long. (November 2013)

Universal

½

The Robertson Family – Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas

The Robertson FamilyDuck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas

The Robertson family is famous for its television show at the A&E network, Duck Dynasty. They present some traditional Christmas songs like "I'll Be Home for Christmas", "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and "Silent Night". Otherwise, the family offers many original songs, usually in the country style, but sometimes more cabaret ("You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch"). The whole remains on a rather humorous tone and the Robertson family can count on the help of collaborators such as Luke Bryan, Josh Turner, George Strait and Alison Krauss. This is certainly not the Christmas album of the year, but it will make the fans of the TV show smile. (November 2013)

Beards / EMI / Universal

½

Straight No Chaser – Under the Influence: Holiday Edition

Straight No ChaserUnder the Influence: Holiday Edition

After its album Under the Influence, the a capella group returns with a special EP for the holiday season. It includes a capella Christmas songs as "White Christmas", but also other songs conducive to the holiday season as "Nutcracker" and "Amazing Grace". The band goes well beyond what is usually meant with a bit more rare tracks for the season. Among the most versatile pieces you can hear, there is the excellent "Wonderful Christmastime" with the participation of Paul McCartney. As collaborators, there are also Colbie Caillat, CeeLo Green and Otis Redding. The 8 tracks totaling 27 minutes will provide you good quality time in this time of joy. (December 2013)

Atlantic / Warner

 

2003:

 

Maybe This Christmas Too

Maybe This Christmas Too?

Here is a 2nd Christmas CD in this series which is completely different from what we usually hear in this time of the year. It's an album with songs from contemporary pop rock artists including Rufus Wainwright, Avril Lavigne, Chantal Kreviazuk, Dave Matthews Band, Barenaked Ladies, The Flaming Lips, Sixpence None The Richer, etc. We can find some Christmas classics (O Holy Night by Lavigne and Kreviazuk, Silent Night by Lisa Hannigan and White Christmas by The Flaming Lips), but most of all, many recent compositions which in most cases could be listened to at any time of the year (some of them are from Rufus Wainwright, Eisley and Oh Susanna). Even if the common theme to all the songs of the album is Christmas, it's an album of a great creativity and its lifetime is far from just the Christmas time. In addition to the good artistic side of this compilation, its uniformity is impressing, which makes it a good album to listen to from the beginning to the end. If you want to hear a different Christmas CD, this one is the good one. (December 2003)

Nettwerk

 

Buy Music CDs at CD Universe. Audio Samples and Reviews Available on Music New Releases

 

 

     

     

 

Custom Search


 

 

 

Copyright © 2001-2018, Musicomania.ca. Tous droits réservés / All rights reserved.

S'abonner à musicomania_ca sur Twitter / Join musicomania_ca on Twitter