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Glee The Music: The Christmas Album

Glee: The Christmas Album

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

GIVEN the unstoppable success of Glee it’s hardly a surprise that the effervescent cast has delivered a timely Christmas album. Unsurprising, too, is just how much fun it is.

Delivered with customary panache, The Christmas Album manages to combine the traditional American schmaltz with the show’s usual breezy, feel-good rhythms.

The mix, meanwhile, incorporates fun Christmas pop records with well-known Christmas standards and even an ode to Dr Seuss.

The album, meanwhile, extends to 12 songs… an apt amount given the festive theme.

Of the highlights, album opener We Need A Little Christmas – featuring the combined talents of Jenna Ushkowitz, Amber Riley and Chris Colfer, kicks things off in suitably jolly fashion, while Chris Colfer and Darren Criss duet strongly on Baby, It’s Cold Outsie.

The cover of Wham’s Last Christmas is given maximum Glee sheen and is an easy pick as album favourite… while there’s an effortless appeal to the likes of The Most Wonderful Day of The Year and Deck The Rooftop which makes singing along virtually essential.

Matthew Morrison comes over all moody – but magnificent – for O Christmas Tree, and duets with KD Lang on the odd but kind of fun You’re A Mean One, Mr Grinch, which underlines America’s continued fascination with Dr Seuss.

Lea Michele, Amber Riley, Naya Rivera and Jenna Ushkkowitz combine, meanwhile, to add a little moodiness to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen.

Just occasionally, there’s the odd overcooked Christmas offering, such as Amber Riley’s Angels We Have Heard on High – which veers a little too closely to the type of overdone schmaltz found all over Mariah Carey’s latest offering – while O Holy Night, featuring Leah Michele, is also a little too earnest for its own good and a somewhat underwhelming finale.

But in most respects, this is a blast… just like every other musical release so far associated with this incredibly hot show. And it’s got to make a better alternative to endless repeats of Slade or Cliff Richard, or even the Wham boys themselves!

Download picks: Last Christmas, Deck The Rooftop, We Need A Little Christmas, Baby, It’s Cold Outside, You’re A Man One, Mr Grinch, The Most Wonderful Day of The Year

Track listing:

  1. We Need A Little Christmas
  2. Deck The Rooftop
  3. Merry Christmas Darling
  4. Baby, It’s Cold Outside
  5. The Most Wonderful Day of The Year
  6. Last Christmas
  7. God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
  8. O Christmas Tree
  9. Jingle Bells
  10. You’re A Mean One, Mr Grinch
  11. Angels We Have Heard on High
  12. O Holy Night