Top positive review
Recommended for All People Who Like Christmas Music
on November 16, 2002
The subtitle of NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL CHRISTMAS! says it all: the collection gives about an equal representation of Christmas songs from the past and present. Now, the most sensitive people could argue about the problems with a setup like this today, especially since the holiday tracks recorded now tend to pale in quality when compared to accomplished classics from the past. But surprisingly, the modern-day holiday tunes here are actually, for the most part, very good. And when paired with an excellent selection of classic material, the overall listen of the collection can be considered to be very good, if not excellent.
Disc one contains most of the classic material, thus it can be considered to be the better half of the collection. But the listen may be even more superb than some buyers may expect- simply because it feels great just to hear classic after classic pour out, especially when it comes to Elvis Presley's "Blue Christmas"; Burl Ives's "A Holly Jolly Christmas"; Bobby Helms's "Jingle Bell Rock"; Frank Sinatra's "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas"; Nat King Cole's "The Christmas Song"; Bing Crosby's Grammy-winning recording (not the familiar version) of "White Christmas"; and even Elmo & Patsy's "Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer."
Disc two starts on the same par by finishing the classic set with the contemporary tunes of John Lennon's "Happy Xmas (War Is Over)"; Bruce Springsteen's "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town"; Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas"; and Paul McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime." Then the present-era set of songs begin: a few times, the tunes feel admittedly unqualified, especially when they almost do not feel like Christmas tunes (Michael Bolton's "Our Love Is Like a Holiday"; Gloria Estefan's "Love on Layaway"; The Big Yard Family's "All We Need Is Love"), but otherwise, they fit with the overall mood and quality of the collection, especially through Britney Spears's "My Only Wish (This Year)"; Boyz II Men's "Silent Night"; Manheim Steamroller's "Away in a Manger"; and Celine Dion's "Don't Save It All For Christmas Day."
All things considered, NOW THAT'S WHAT I CALL CHRISTMAS! is an excellent collection that has more than enough classic tunes and strong selections to be worth its price. Anybody who enjoys Christmas music of any time will probably find this to be an excellent gift in his/her stocking or an excellent listen during the entire holiday season.